Mar 3 2007

StarJunky Fermi: Hi Jack

Jack: hi StarJunky

StarJunky Fermi: brb... more coffee

Jack: me too

Jack: OK, back

StarJunky Fermi: yep, with steaming cuppa joe

Jack: mine's brewing now

Jack: how was your week?

StarJunky Fermi: not bad - worked from home Thurs and Fri due to cubicle farm rebuild at work

StarJunky Fermi: could get used to full time telework

Jack: me too

Jack: that's one of my goals

Jack: I have been studying Cinema 4D again, an animation program I have

Jack: it takes a few months to get back up to speed on a program like that

StarJunky Fermi: cool - I've not done much with 3d tools outside of SL

StarJunky Fermi: toyed with Google's 3d breifly

StarJunky Fermi: I bet

StarJunky Fermi: did you have a chance to look at the Sci Am MyLifeBits article?

Jack: Is that for Google Earth?

Jack: yes

Jack: I might try doing a bit more archiving too

StarJunky Fermi: Google Sketchup

Jack: there's a web browser that saves all the pages it visits

StarJunky Fermi: Yeah - I'd like all my paper docs scanned and searchable too

StarJunky Fermi: but then the problem is organizing all that stuff

StarJunky Fermi: could be where ZigZag comes in, no?

StarJunky Fermi: I've been researching and experimenting with the zigzag data structure concept

StarJunky Fermi: very powerful

Jack: yes

Jack: have you looked at Sentences?

StarJunky Fermi: heard about it, but not checked it out? what's it do?

Jack: I'll try out Google Sketchup

Jack: it's a database that uses some of the zigzag concepts

StarJunky Fermi: ahh google just found your hyperlworlds link to it

Jack: for instance, if only one record out of a million needs a particular field, you don't have to add it to the other 999,999

StarJunky Fermi: oh yeah - I had come across the Lazy Soft site before

StarJunky Fermi: yes - an efficient multi dimensional, sparse data strucure

Jack: yes, I have just used it a little, but it looks really useful

StarJunky Fermi: Lazy Soft reminds me of a "universal" database datamodel some

StarJunky Fermi: radicals at my company built a content mgmt system on

StarJunky Fermi: I think zigzag is better tho

StarJunky Fermi: they applied for a data model patent - doubt they will get it

Jack: I just recently found the truthmapping website, it's a little like Compendium, but more structured

StarJunky Fermi: do the Lazy Soft credit Nelson and /or Xanadu?

Jack: not bad for a web application

Jack: yes, they do

StarJunky Fermi: checking out truthmapping now...

Jack: I will have to brush up on my logic to get some arguments ready for it

Jack: it looks better for simpler logic problems than Compendium, which seems more suited to "wicked" problems

StarJunky Fermi: interesting that they allow likelihood probablities - could lead to Bayesian analysis?

Jack: next time I go to the philosophy cafe here, I will mention it

Jack: are likelihood probabilities just guesses, or are there criteria than can be added up to generate them?

StarJunky Fermi: do you attend philosophy cafe meetings often, Jack?

Jack: just started recently, they have them every week across from Texas Tech

StarJunky Fermi: I think they are just guesses for any non-composite premise, but composite premises liklihood can be computed from Bayes theorem

StarJunky Fermi: speaking of Tech, I actually grew up in Lubbock

Jack: wow

StarJunky Fermi: small world, eh?

Jack: I've been here for about 20 years

Jack: yes

StarJunky Fermi: I thought you meant SL philo cafe

StarJunky Fermi: my folks and a couple of siblings still the Home of Buddy Holly :)

StarJunky Fermi: still live in*

Jack: I hope they get chat bounding boxes in SL soon

Jack: that's neat

StarJunky Fermi: not familiar - what is it?

Jack: it's something that could come in handy in a coffee shop in SL, where chat boundaries could be confined to a small area, one table for instance

StarJunky Fermi: kinda like a private chat channel, but distance limited?

Jack: yes

StarJunky Fermi: cool

Melon Beck: so what is xanadu.... interested coz I just beat myself up switching from html to xhtml/style sheets.

Jack: it would also be great for apartment buildings and arcologies

StarJunky Fermi: have the Linden's mentioned it being on the SL roadmap

StarJunky Fermi: Melon, Jack is the Xanadu expert - I'll let him field your question

Jack: it's been discussed on the forums for a long time

Jack: it's an advanced hypertext concept

Jack: where the formatting, links, etc. is not embedded into the text, but only combined as needed

Jack: so you can have multiple link and format sets

Melon Beck: so its non structured?

Jack: also, all published versions of a document stay online, partly to prevent broken links

Jack: it can be as structured as needed

Melon Beck: hmm I'm interested in learning new concepts from a graphics design point of view.. getting frustrated with limitations of css/browser.

Jack: links are bi-directional, so if A links to B, then B is automatically linked to A

Melon Beck: hmm so links just follow thru hmmm

Jack: yes, the whole web way of doing things is primitive to anyone who has experience with other hypertext systems

Melon Beck: /

Melon Beck: well just sitting here.. sort of proves that as well

Jack: it's successful primarily because it was first on the Internet

Melon Beck: my only concern/wish is that any tools or languages need to be more transparent.. more like just picking up a pen and paper.. perhaps.. and being able to not have to learn code or a god awful interface to express yourself will xanudu adress that?

Jack: I have used CSS some, but it has problems, especially when used for positioning

Melon Beck: or does rather

Melon Beck has scars on forehead from using css

Melon Beck: /from beating head on keyboard

StarJunky Fermi: heh

Melon Beck: but css does address interoperability to some extent

StarJunky Fermi too

Jack: Xanadu will allow for many interfaces, created for various needs

Jack: so it could be as simple as using a text editor, or as complex as Maple, TEX, or Mathematica; and that's just for text

Jack: any media would be included eventually

Jack: or it's concepts implemented in a 3D environment, like SL

Melon Beck: well I think we're perhaps one more generation of hardware/mem storage away from the next explosion.. sec life type interfaces will evolve... and grow and become the standard..

Jack: yes

Melon Beck: afk for a sec googling xanudu

Jack: yes, as more types of documents become accessible in 3D environments, they will become more popular

StarJunky Fermi: Melon, Jack has a great site for hypermedia research at

StarJunky Fermi: brb.. biobreak

Jack: another concept of Xanadu is called transclusion

Melon Beck: back

Melon Beck: what is transclusion?

Jack: it is similar to copying, but when anything is quoted in another document, it will link back to the original context

Melon Beck: so automatically linking without having to code one?

Jack: and before publishing in Xanadu, authors will give advance permission to anyone to quote to any length in any context

Melon Beck: omg this is going to give the copywrite lawyers breakdowns.. lmao

Jack: yes, when you copy and paste in Xanadu, a link to the source is created

Jack: content can be either free or sold incrementally

Melon Beck: hmmm so you could set up micropayments much like linden dollars.. cool

Jack: If I create a magazine containing dozens of articles, those that cost will be bought by each reader at the time they read them

Jack: yes, micropayments will be for very small amounts, so something could be sold for a fraction of a cent, if you want

Melon Beck: again much like linden ex...

Jack: yes, the Linden payment system is quite sophisticated

Melon Beck: hmmm is there much interest in using xanudu in the community at large then?

Jack: if the Xanadu transclusion system was implemented here, objects could be taken apart and any part reused in other 3D creations and sold, with parts of the sale going to each contributor

Jack: Xanadu was originally designed in the 1960's, with several attempts to implement it

Jack: there are several new projects ongoing, but progress is slow

Jack: I think as newer and better tools and languages are created, more of the Xanadu ideas will show up

Jack: there are many programs that have some of the Xanadu ideas in them

Melon Beck: interesting..

Jack: I link to them as I find them on the hyperworlds website

Melon Beck: well I now have a ton of stuff to read.. got to head out now.. thanks for making my head hurt some more

Melon Beck: nice to meet you.

Jack: any time

Melon Beck: /ao on

Jack: good to meet you too

Jack: have you read "The Wisdom of Crowds"?

StarJunky Fermi: I'm watching the gzz demo videos Jack

StarJunky Fermi: nope

StarJunky Fermi: is it good?

Jack: yes, a lot of good things in it

StarJunky Fermi: I'll put on my book list

Jack: it mentions Bayes theorem

StarJunky Fermi: yeah - I keep stumbling across Bayes these days

Jack: I'm sort of mathematically deprived, but trying to remedy that on my own

StarJunky Fermi: Spam filters, autonomous robotic vehicles, etc

StarJunky Fermi: Bayes theorem is diffiucult to understand

Jack: SL would be a good testing ground for robots

StarJunky Fermi: conditional probabibilties are tough

Jack: spam filtering has got to be a hard problem

StarJunky Fermi: yeah - SL could be useful for robot prototyping

Jack: I wish I could just trust my spam filter completely, but there are still enough holes in it that I have to scan all the subject lines before deleting

Jack: once I learn some more math, I'm sure there will be lots of uses for it in animation and 3D environments

StarJunky Fermi: undoubtedly - I expermented with a 3D function graphing program back in college

Jack: I just wish that when I was in school, that we had good math software

StarJunky Fermi: the math can get pretty hairy

StarJunky Fermi: slide rule days, eh?

Jack: I have Maple, but still need to learn more before I can really use it much

Jack: I like taking the math history approach to studying math

Jack: I just need more hours in the day

StarJunky Fermi: yep - so do I

Jack: I'm studying Cinema 4D and programming now

StarJunky Fermi: yeah - how's the Python coming along?

Jack: making slow progress

StarJunky Fermi: do you find the VLC or whatever the video tutorial service you use helpful?

Jack: there are a lot of gaps yet to fill in

Jack: VTC

StarJunky Fermi: yeah, VTC

Jack: they don't have Python yet

Jack: so I'm using Safari bookshelf

Jack: they just recently added 75 video courses, so I started the one on Cinema 4D a couple of days ago

StarJunky Fermi: that just reminded me of a useful Firefox plugin - heard of Stumble?

Jack: yes, I have it added but haven't used it recently

Jack: I also added the Hyperwords plugin

StarJunky Fermi: a good example of "wisdom of crowds" maybe?

Jack: and use it sometimes

StarJunky Fermi: not familiar with hyperwords?

Jack: I will have another look at it

Jack: it does many kinds of look-ups on selections in the browser

Jack: like Google, Wikipedia, dictionary, etc.

StarJunky Fermi: nice!

StarJunky Fermi: well - I've enjoyed it, but gotta go

StarJunky Fermi: its a beautiful day in Houston, time to go out and play

Jack: it would be handy to have definitions pop up in small windows

Jack: OK, have a good day

StarJunky Fermi: you too

Jack: thanks for coming

StarJunky Fermi: you bet, always enjoy it

Jack: I may go fishing before work

StarJunky Fermi: can't believe I had not friended you sooner - musta thought I already had!

StarJunky Fermi: ok - good luck

Jack: no problem