Ragged Clown

It's just a shadow you're seeing that he's chasing…

My Drawing Table Squeaks


Took the kids to the Exploratorium today. It’s currently my favourite museum. Better even than OMSI (although they don’t serve beer at The Exploratorium. How come that hasn’t caught on outside Portland?)  I wish San Jose had a decent museum. The Tech sucks worse than possibly any museum in the world except Morwelham Quay.

I couldn’t find my favourite exhibit – Ladle Rat Rotten Hut. There are so many great exhibits that I have never actually seen them all.

Wan moaning, Rat Rotten Hut’s murder colder inset, “Ladle Rat Rotten Hut, heresy ladle basking winsome burden barter an shirker cockles. Tick disk ladle basking tutor cordage offer groin-murder hoe lifts honor udder site offer florist. Shaker lake! Dun stopper laundry wrote! An yonder nor sorghum-stenches, dun stopper torque wet strainers!”

Jazz fell in love with the drawing board and watched it for about 90 minutes. It’s basically a table hung from four ropes like a pendulum and a pen that draws patterns on a piece of paper as the table swings and twists.  There is a weight that makes it swing eccentrically to make the patterns more interesting.

I promised to make her a real one but I wanted to see if I could do it in Alan Kay’s excellent Squeak first. It was pretty easy and quite effective.

Here’s the program. I messed around with the constants to get different effects.

squeak program

and here’s a picture I made with it:


Today: simulation. Tomorrow: the real thing.

Wish us luck!


I just downloaded the latest version of Squeak (now called etoys). It’s MUCH better than it used to be. All the bugs are gone and it doesn’t look like it was made in 1983 any more. Go get it from http://www.squeakland.org/ then you can play with my project – Squeak: Drawing Table


Maybe you could add damping for me.