Monthly Archives: October 2010


most forms and account profiles let you choose between “male” and “female”. it would be funnier if options were “terrible”, “okeish”, “good” and “excellent” instead.

la mayoría de los formularios y perfiles te permiten elegir entre “masculino” y “femenino”. sería más divertido si las opciones no fueran ésas sino “terrible”, “normal”, “bueno” y “excelente”.

do you believe in dinosaurs?

I bumped into this question today. But I fail to understand what they were really trying to ask me.

pretending i am naive

Crees en los dinosaurios? – Me he tropezado con esta pregunta, hoy. Pero no acabo de entender qué es lo que querían preguntarme realmente.

haciéndome el inocente

closest point in ellipse

this is one of the very few times that i decided to go quartic degree. trigonometrics are so ugly 🙁

void closestPointInEllipse( float *ex, float *ey, float ea, float eb, float x, float y )
    const float k = eb*eb - ea*ea;
    const float a = ea*x/k; const float a2 = a*a;
    const float b = eb*y/k; const float b2 = b*b;
    const float c = (a2 + b2 - 1.0f)/3.0f; const float c3 = c*c*c;

    const float q = c3 + b2*a2*2.0f;
    const float d = c3 + b2*a2;
    const float g = a + a*b2;

    float co;

    if( d<0.0f )
        const float p = acosf(q/c3)/3.0f;
        const float m = cosf(p);
        const float n = sinf(p)*sqrtf(3.0f);
        const float rx = sqrtf( -c*(m + n + 2.0f) + a2 );
        const float ry = sqrtf( -c*(m - n + 2.0f) + a2 );
        co = ( ry + (k>0.0f?rx:-rx) + fabsf(g)/(rx*ry) - a)/2.0f;
        const float h = 2.0f*a*b*sqrtf( d );
        const float s = powf( q+h, 1.0f/3.0f );
        const float u = powf( q-h, 1.0f/3.0f );
        const float rx = -s - u - c*4.0f + 2.0f*a2;
        const float ry = (s - u)*sqrtf(3.0f);
        const float rm = sqrtf( rx*rx + ry*ry );
        const float p = ry/sqrtf(rm-rx);
        co = (p + 2.0f*g/rm - a)/2.0f;

    if( co>1.0f ) co=1.0f;
    const float si = sqrtf( 1.0f - co*co );
    ex[0] = ea*co;
    ey[0] = eb*si;

as expected, (ea,eb) are the radii of the ellipse (which is centered in the origin and aligned to the xy axes), the (x,y) params are your point in the (+,+) quadrant (think symmetric), and (ex, ey) the resulting closest point in the ellipse.


i’m still confused by all this technology paranoid that goes on here in the sf bay area. i just can’t follow it, neither i want to. i must be a technosaurus.

against the statistics

strawberry 47 %
vanilla 13 %
el trastero 7%
shadertoy 30 %
graphtoy 3%

it it wasn’t because i never do what it seems to be the reasonable thing to do, i would have to say that i’m putting my effort in the wrong place.

how sad

i guess the key here is that for most people it seems natural to think of corruption as a measurable quantity. that way, the effect of your actions could be of a lessen or bigger importance depending the relevance of the dishonesty involved (where “relevance” probably means “amount of money” to them).


supongo que el quid de la cuestión está en que a la mayoría de la gente le parece natural pensar en la corrupción como algo cuantitativo. así, las consecuencias de las acciones serían de mayor o menor gravedad dependiendo de la relevancia de la deshonestidad causada ( para muchos “la cantidad de dinero involucrado).


pd. de hecho, en españa, no hacer la trampa significa ser un pringado
pd.pd. a tope chavales, ¡vamos de maravilla!


i don’t like it when i receive one of those emails saying “hey guys, my friend entered this contest and now it’s the time for voting. he does nice music, and now he needs 200 votes in the next couple of days to be promoted to the next phase, so please go and vote for him. thanks so much!”

wait, am i supposed to vote for him blindly without listening to the other guys, who might make much better music than he does? that’s what it is of course.

i find it amazing. cheating like fucking kids, or just like corrupted politicians (yeah, those that we complain about for being corrupted…).

besides, if i was that musician, i would be embarrassed for having to cheat (isn’t my music good enough?). and if i was his friend, i would be terribly embarrassed to have to publicly admit that both me and my musician friend are this corrupted.

but apparently not everybody gets equally embarrassed – seems there is a big disparity of values among people.

and yes, i know i might not (or may i?) reach that far in life being honest and fair, but hm…, you know, i think you don’t need to cheat if you are good enough

we call them ‘scientists’

kids keep asking why all the time. why is this so?, why does that happen?. by doing so they slowly build their own (and very personal) framework of truths, which they expand with more because answers, and a deeper understanding. they keep doing so, asking why, until they get a framework they are comfortable with. when no more questions are needed, the kid becomes an adult.

some kids, however, are never satisfied, and do never stop asking why. we call them scientists.

los críos nunca paran de preguntar ¿y por qué?, ¿por qué es eso así?, ¿por qué pasa eso?, todo el tiempo. hacerlo les ayuda a construir progressivamente su sistema de verdades (personal), que van expandiendo con mas respuestas y un compresión más profunda. y siguen preguntando ¿y por qué? hasta que obtienen un sistema con el que están cómodos. y entonces ya no hacen falta más preguntas; el chaval se ha hecho adulto.

algunos críos, sin embargo, nunca quedan satisfechos y no dejan de preguntar ¿y por qué? nunac. los llamamos científicos.

speaking of what,

i think beauty shouldn’t but underrated. we tend to think personality and brain are all that matters. but, you know, we are not just feelings with legs within an organic body, in fact the concept of beauty is distinctively human. and bad news are that time and age don’t provide wisdom to everybody, but certainly steal the beauty from everyone.

how young are you?

the expression “how old are you?” might sound a bit rude for us, the non native english speakers.

other languages use the form “how many years do you ‘have’?” or “what’s your age?”. knowing that english natives have this tendency to use weird ways of counting and measuring, and knowing they will never give up on their system and idiosyncrasy, i propose that at least they change to “how young are you?”. which gets them the same information, but is certainly more pleasing!


Festejar – presente indicativo

yo festejo
tu festejas
el/ella/usted festeja
nosotros festejamos
vosotros festejáis
ellos/ellas/ustedes festejan
Hacer – presente indicativo

tu haces
el/ella/usted hace
vosotros hacéis
ellos/ellas/ustedes hacen


gracias por haberte enredado tanto en mi vida
gracias por haber pasado a formar parte de mi
aún te quiero

the truth about maths

thing is, not only i don’t really have to work with numbers, but i hardly ever think in terms of numbers when i work. i build images and sound by manipulating quantities (or relations between quantities to be more precise) and thinking in terms of shapes, colors and rhythms which are the real elements of maths to me.

ok, everybody think maths are about numbers after all, which in my opinion is a big misconception. so i am aware all this that i am saying might sound a bit abstract. let’s see…

as i see it, asking a mathematician to be good with numbers is like asking a poet to be good in calligraphy. chances are (s)he is not.

cause a poet’s activity is to use language aesthetically, to express emotions, to seduce with language, not to write beautifully in ink and paper. during his workday (s)he thinks in terms of structure, rhyme, meaning, tempo. these are his/her elements. (s)he doesn’t think about about calligraphy or the actual letters.

in a similar way, an engineer or a mathematician might think about relationships, structure, shapes, a rates, but not really actual numbers. in fact, unlike the poet who has to actually write letters at some point, a mathematician might never ever have to write a number during weeks of work, other than, perhaps, 1, E and PI.

for the mathematician, as for the poet, the flow of numbers or letters is of a very low physical nature and pretty irrelevant to the actual creative process.

of course i am not poet, and i’m not even a mathematician. but the point is that being playing with maths all the day long doesn’t make me good with numbers in any way (and as i said, i can probe it!).

la cosa es que en realidad no solo no tengo que trabajar con números, sino que además casi nunca pienso en esos términos en mi trabajo. construyo imágenes y sonido através de la manipulación de cantidades (bueno, relaciones entre cantidades, para ser más precisos) y pienso en términos de formas, colores y ritmos, que son los verdaderos elementos de las matemáticas.

vale, ya sé que todo el mundo piensa que las mates van sobre números; pero en verdad esto es un error bastante gordo. y por eso soy consciente de que lo que pueda opinar sobre lo que las mates son realmente, puede sonar un poco abstracto. pero bueno…

tal y como yo lo veo, pedir a un matemático que sea bueno con números es como pedir a un poeta que sea bueno en caligrafía. no sería extraño que no lo fuera.

porque la actividad principal del poeta es usar el lenguage de forma estéticamente bella, expresar emociones, seducir con el lenguage. no es su prioridad tener buena letra ni controlar el arte de la pluma y el papiro. posiblemente escriba en ordenador. durante su día de trabajo, el poeta piesna en términos de estructura, rima, significado y ritmo. éstos son sus elementos de trabajo. no piensa en ortografía, ni en caligrafía, ni en las letras.

del mismo modo, el ingeniero o el matemático piensa en términos de relaciones, en estructuras, en proporciones, en formas, en colores, pero no en números. de hecho, a diferencia del poeta que posiblemente sí que tenga que escribir algunas letras durante su día de trabajo, el matemático es más que probable que no tenga que escribir ni manipular ni un solo número en todo el día, tal vez con la excepction del 1, e o pi.

para el matemático, como para el poeta las letras, el fluir de los números, si acaso los hubiera en su rama de trabajo, es algo de un muy bajo nivel físico, bastante distante e irrelevante al proceso creativo que lo mantiene atareado.

por supuesto yo no soy matemático, si acaso más poeta, pero la cuestión es que el que me pase el día trasteando con matemáticas no me hace mejor en cálculo mental ni manipulación de números (y como dije, puedo probarlo).

bad with numbers

for sure, this post of today will be surprising for many of you. i know it cause i’ve being experiencing this reaction already many times each time i speak about today’s topic.

as you know, i love maths. and i’m fortunate enough to make my living writing new formulas and expressions. even in my spare time, i usually love playing around with maths.

yet, i am very bad with numbers. cause not only i am no better than anybody else, but often i’m clumsier than most people with numbers and mental operations. so, i tell you, it is a really bad idea to ask me divide the restaurant bill among the friends. i warned you.

and the surprising part usually comes when i explain that, yes, i do work with maths all the day, indeed. but i hardly ever have to work with numbers.

estoy seguro que el post de hoy va a sorprender a muchos. lo sé, porque cada vez que hablo del tema, la gente reacciona con sorpresa

como tal vez sepáis, me flipan las matemáticas. y tengo la gran suerte de ganarme la vida echando fórmulas y expresiones. incluso parte de mi tiempo libre la dedico a jugar con mates.

y aun así, soy muy malo con los números. de hecho no sólo no soy mejor que cualquier otra persona, sino es que además amenudo soy más torpón que el resto con los cálculos mentales. así que no me pidáis que divida el precio de la cena del restaurante entre en número de comensales, porque no. estáis avisados.

y la parte sorprendente suele llegar cuando explico que, si, efectivamente, trabajo con mates todo el día. y sin embargo en muy raras ocasiones uso o pienso en números.

doing some maths

estaba mirando los numeritos esos de ahí a la derecha, y echando cuentas, y resulta que, se vé, escribo alguna parida cada menos de dos días y medio. aún no he decidido si esas paridas son para los lectores que caen de vez en cuando por aquí (unos mil al mes), o para mí mismo. en cualquier caso, como con casi todo lo que hago, me falta tiempo, y escribo menos de lo que me gustaría. en fin. i was looking to those numbers there in the right side of this page, and doing the maths. apparently it happens that i seem to be writing an entry almost every other day (well, once every 2.3 days). i’ve not decided yet whether this bullshit i produce is for the random readers that arrive here accidentally (a thousand a month) or for myself. either way, just like in almost anything i do, i’m lacking the time i wish i had for it. well, what-ever.