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Work Log

Note: I’ve not been good about keeping a log of work as I go, but I think it’s worth recounting the progress to date in terms of the major milestones at least. Entries that are added retroactively are labeled as such.

Sep 18, 2017

Together with Joaquin, James and Jojo, created a 20-minute approximation of a Sun andRayused to guide growth ofLeaf elements. It worked pretty well for a first cut, and made the idea of vine-like growth I was aiming for in my first “Cool” element seem more tenable.

Sep 19, 2017

Added Garden idea to my project ideas

(Retro) Project proposal Sept 20

The initial proposal was to make a Wall-less Garden in the MFM, the name hinting at the goal of indefinite scalability. The basic goal is to approximate plant life with resource-driven growth and behavior.

The elements I saw making up the model were divided into two groups. Plant-like things such as Stem, Leaf, Flower, and Root would make up the “organic” part of the universe, while resources would be gained from Suns producing Rays carrying energy, Dirt carrying nutrients and Water carrying water. These three resources would be required by the organic elements to live and grow, and would ideally drive their behavior patterns in interesting ways.

There were some unanswered questions, such as whether there should be any kind of reproduction or genetics in the plants, and what the perspective would look like. The slide (shown below) from the proposal showed a (hand-drawn) image of what it might look like, with Dirt at the bottom of the MFM window, and Stems growing upwards. It was suggested that the side-on perspective was not really compatible with the scalability goal (restricting the universe artificially), and so was born the idea of a “Space Garden”, where Dirt` could cluster and permit outwards growth in any direction.

The biggest question to answer was the justification of the project. Then and now, I believe this is fundamentally interesting in a more artistic sense than anything else. While the model purports to demonstrate something approaching artificial life, the exploration of that aspect is less interesting to me than producing a universe in which cool-looking things can grow.