Programming the computer is the process of arranging symbols and data into instructions a computer can follow. The languages we use are finite, initial conditions are known, and all data can be represented by simple numeric values. In such an ordered system, it would seem that a computer program’s behaviour would always be predictable. In most cases, this is true. In others, it is most certainly not.
In fact, executing certain kinds of computer programs can have wildly unexpected results.
In this presentation, Tarbell will explore the bizarre, the surreal, and the fantastic mysteries intrinsic to computer programming.
Strange loops, self-reference, network paradox, chaotic attractors, recursive construction, hidden messages in the imaginary realm, spontaneous self-organization, emergence, and complexity will all be covered with visual interest. At times, the presentation will translate away from computer science into parallel mysteries of the natural world.
Demonstrations of these ideas will be shown in both Processing and Flash AS3. Projects and code will be given away as open source.
Tarbell’s own handcrafted computational artifacts will be distributed to a lucky few, so try and get a good seat.