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Floating down a Tributary: A web interface for live and responsive visual coding

Floating down a Tributary: A web interface for live and responsive visual coding | The introspective universe | Scoop.it

All aboard? Prepare yourself for a voyage through parameter space as we embark on project Tributary! Tributary is a web interface for live and responsive visual coding. It includes a code editor and provides some popular javascript libraries for visual programming. The core concept of tributary comes from the inspirational Bret Victor video and the implementation is derived from Gabriel Florit’s water project.

 

Tributary is aimed at being a learning tool and a playground for visual programming. It has already been useful to me as a rapid prototyping tool for data visualization, and I also enjoy using it to come up with unexpected visual effects and optical illusions. I hope that it can also serve as a great learning tool for those who are new to interactive visual programming in javascript as well.

 

Tributary uses d3.js and SVG to provide graphics rendering capabilities. All tributary really does is provide an svg element. When the code in the editor is changed, the svg element is emptied and the code is evaluated. The assumption here is that the code will draw something in the svg element. The editor has been modified so that whenever you click on a number or a color string an interactive slider or color picker will pop up. Moving the slider will modify the number and redraw (by re-executing the code for each number change) automatically, allowing you to quickly see how a certain value affects your visualization.

 

Besides d3.js, tributary code snippets have access to Underscore.js and Backbone.js as well as jQuery. The code editor is powered by CodeMirror, with the color picker powered byColor Picker and the sliders powered by jQuery UI.

 

This project excites me everyday, mostly because it makes coding a much more interactive experience which also makes it much easier to code with other people. Because you get instant visual feedback it’s also possible to code live in front of other people in a way that wasn’t exciting before. As a teaching tool your words come alive as you type out the code and as a rapid prototyping tool you can iterate quickly with a domain expert as they suggest changes or ask interesting questions.

 


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
Reegan Bourgeois's insight:

I almost want to hop back into programming just so I could make use of this amazing tool. Perhaps somewhere down the line.

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Rescooped by Reegan Bourgeois from Drugs, Society, Human Rights & Justice
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VIDEO 22mins: Neuroscientist Carl Hart argues drug policy should be informed by science rather than recycled anecdotes, racist fears, exaggerated scientific evidence and shock horror

VIDEO 22mins: Neuroscientist Carl Hart argues drug policy should be informed by science rather than recycled anecdotes, racist fears, exaggerated scientific evidence and shock horror | The introspective universe | Scoop.it
"We haven't had an adult conversation about drugs in America," says acclaimed neuroscientist Carl Hart, who's trying to do just that with his new book,

Via Julian Buchanan
Reegan Bourgeois's insight:

So you're telling me that no one is throwing around actual information when it comes to the "War on Drugs"? That isn't the least bit surprising.

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Julian Buchanan's curator insight, July 23, 2013 2:34 AM

Carl Hart speaks sense and recognises that the damage of criminalisation is worse than the drug and calls for an adult conversation on drugs. 

Rescooped by Reegan Bourgeois from Amazing Science
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Floating down a Tributary: A web interface for live and responsive visual coding

Floating down a Tributary: A web interface for live and responsive visual coding | The introspective universe | Scoop.it

All aboard? Prepare yourself for a voyage through parameter space as we embark on project Tributary! Tributary is a web interface for live and responsive visual coding. It includes a code editor and provides some popular javascript libraries for visual programming. The core concept of tributary comes from the inspirational Bret Victor video and the implementation is derived from Gabriel Florit’s water project.

 

Tributary is aimed at being a learning tool and a playground for visual programming. It has already been useful to me as a rapid prototyping tool for data visualization, and I also enjoy using it to come up with unexpected visual effects and optical illusions. I hope that it can also serve as a great learning tool for those who are new to interactive visual programming in javascript as well.

 

Tributary uses d3.js and SVG to provide graphics rendering capabilities. All tributary really does is provide an svg element. When the code in the editor is changed, the svg element is emptied and the code is evaluated. The assumption here is that the code will draw something in the svg element. The editor has been modified so that whenever you click on a number or a color string an interactive slider or color picker will pop up. Moving the slider will modify the number and redraw (by re-executing the code for each number change) automatically, allowing you to quickly see how a certain value affects your visualization.

 

Besides d3.js, tributary code snippets have access to Underscore.js and Backbone.js as well as jQuery. The code editor is powered by CodeMirror, with the color picker powered byColor Picker and the sliders powered by jQuery UI.

 

This project excites me everyday, mostly because it makes coding a much more interactive experience which also makes it much easier to code with other people. Because you get instant visual feedback it’s also possible to code live in front of other people in a way that wasn’t exciting before. As a teaching tool your words come alive as you type out the code and as a rapid prototyping tool you can iterate quickly with a domain expert as they suggest changes or ask interesting questions.

 


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
Reegan Bourgeois's insight:

I almost want to hop back into programming just so I could make use of this amazing tool. Perhaps somewhere down the line.

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Rescooped by Reegan Bourgeois from The NewSpace Daily
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Virgin Galactic's Private Spaceship Offers Enticing Science Opportunities

Virgin Galactic's Private Spaceship Offers Enticing Science Opportunities | The introspective universe | Scoop.it

With all the attention being given to Virgin Galactic's impressive list of future celebritynauts (Ashton! Branson! Beiber!), its spaceship's impressive capabilities for microgravity research have been largely overlooked.


The private space plane, called SpaceShipTwo, is set to begin carrying passengers to the edge of space on suborbital rides in 2014. Already, 600 people have signed up for flights, including actors Ashton Kutcher and Angelina Jolie, singers Justin Beiber and Katy Perry, and Virgin Galactic's celebrity founder himself, Sir Richard Branson.

SpaceShipTwo has 500 cubic feet (14 cubic meters) of interior space available for experiments, the most of any of the crewed suborbital vehicles now under development. The passenger cabin can fit the equivalent of 20 space shuttle mid-deck locker equivalents as well as a flight test engineer who will run experiments.

 


Via Stratocumulus
Reegan Bourgeois's insight:

I'd jump on this had I the money. Maybe one day...

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Renee Kowalchik's curator insight, July 20, 2013 9:30 PM

When I win the lottery...

Stratocumulus's comment, July 21, 2013 1:09 PM
Sooner than that.
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RNA-interference pesticides will need special safety testing

RNA-interference pesticides will need special safety testing | The introspective universe | Scoop.it
RNA interference technology holds promise for the development of pesticides and genetically-modified crops, but possible harmful effects on beneficial species are a concern.
Reegan Bourgeois's insight:

So what you're saying is that we didn't have special safety testing in the previous pesticides? Good to know that we're just taking the shot gun approach when we feel like it.

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Rescooped by Reegan Bourgeois from News You Can Use - NO PINKSLIME
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Student Science Experiment Finds Plants Won’t Grow Near Wi-fi Router

Student Science Experiment Finds Plants Won’t Grow Near Wi-fi Router | The introspective universe | Scoop.it
Waldorf News - by Mathias Bohn Five ninth-grade young women from Denmark recently created a science experiment that is causing a stir in the scientific community. It started with an observation and...

Via #BBBundyBlog #NOMORELIES Tom Woods #Activist Award #Scoopiteer >20,000 Sources >250K Connections http://goo.gl/ruHO3Q
Reegan Bourgeois's insight:

Only a single study with fairly limited parameters but still interesting. I'd be curious to see how similar experiments would turn out and how many would need to be done for larger implications.

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Royal baby rumbled: the science behind a royal birth - The Guardian

Royal baby rumbled: the science behind a royal birth - The Guardian | The introspective universe | Scoop.it
The Guardian
Royal baby rumbled: the science behind a royal birth
The Guardian
The Duchess of Cambridge very recently gave birth to a baby boy. This has caused much of the UK media and beyond to go into overdrive as the story develops.
Reegan Bourgeois's insight:

Stop the presses! A WOMAN had a BABY somewhere in the world. Definitely makes for big time news. Sometimes I wonder how we made it this far...

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Rescooped by Reegan Bourgeois from Amazing Science
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Everything is programmable: The future of cybernetically enhanced senses

Everything is programmable: The future of cybernetically enhanced senses | The introspective universe | Scoop.it

We’re in the midst of a bionic revolution, yet most of us don’t know it. One of the definitions of sanity is the ability to tell real from unreal.

 

Robotics, Cyborgs, Augmented Reality, Synthetic Biology, Artificial Intelligence, and human enhancement technologies are only some of the fields, which are changing the ‘situation’ to which we need construct a new model of reality.

 

The world to which we were accustomed and through which we ‘made sense’ and constructed awareness to is no longer.

 

We may not realize the immediate implications of these technologies, but make no mistake, as soon as sense extensions become a widespread phenomena (and we believe that is soon) our Situational awareness will change accordingly and the theory of mind we each construct and carry will be altered irrevocably.


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
Reegan Bourgeois's insight:

I find this hitting far too close to home based on some personal observations. I wonder how many other people have noticed similar events.

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Rescooped by Reegan Bourgeois from Amazing Science
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Bacteria have evolved specific cell-cell communication systems allowing them to build up cooperative networks

Bacteria have evolved specific cell-cell communication systems allowing them to build up cooperative networks | The introspective universe | Scoop.it

LMU microbiologist PD Dr. Ralf Heermann and Professor Helge Bode of the Goethe-University in Frankfurt have just reported the discovery of a previously unknown bacterial "language". Their findings are detailed in the latest issue of the journal Nature Chemical Biology. "Our results demonstrate that bacterial communication is much more complex than has been assumed to date," Heermann says.

 

The bacterial communication system that is currently best understood uses N-acylhomoserine lactones (AHLs) as signals. These compounds are made by enzymes that belong to the group of LuxI-family synthases. Transmitting cells secrete the signal and neighboring cells recognize the concentration via a LuxR-type receptor. Signal perception changes the pattern of gene expression in the receiving cells, which results in alterations in their functional properties or behavior. However, many bacteria have LuxR receptors but lack any LuxI homolog, so that they cannot produce AHLs. These receptors are referred to as LuxR solos.

 

Ralf Heermann and Helge Bode have now discovered a type of ligand that binds to LuxR solos. As model system, they chose the species Photorhabdus luminescens, a pathogenic bacterium that is lethal to insects.

 

"We have identified a new class of bacterial signaling molecules, which are produced by a previously unknown biochemical route," explains Helge Bode, Merck Professor of Molecular Biotechnology at Goethe-Universität Frankfurt. It turns out that a LuxR solo of this bacterium responds to compounds called alpha-pyrones, specifically to photopyrones. Furthermore, the researchers have identified the pyrone synthase (PpyS) that catalyzes the biosynthesis of photopyrones. The pyrone-based signaling system allows the bacteria to recognize one another, whereupon they produce a surface factor that causes cell clumping. Heermann and Bode assume that this collective behavior makes the cells less vulnerable to the insect's innate immune system, and then allows them to kill their victims by the production of various of toxins." P. luminescens is a useful model organism, because it is related to many human pathogens, including coliform bacteria such as enterohemorrhagic E. coli (EHEC) and well as plague bacteria," Heermann points out.

 


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
Reegan Bourgeois's insight:

I'm curious if people will file this under "only for bacteria" due to the way the article is written. Perhaps there are implications in a larger scope?

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