On advice from Rob Harris, I went to the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. Unfortunately, I only had about an hour to visit, since the musuem doesn’t open until 11:00 am, and I had a flight out in mid-afternoon. Still, it was a wonderful hour, well spent enjoying the gestalt of the musuem, famously controlled by Gardner’s will to neither add nor subtract from the musuem’s holdings. The courtyard is delightful; it, and the sight of a stained glass window as I turned a corner, both made me gasp.
I’ve been in California for work, and I got to play a bit too–I sang at the first annual San Francisco Sacred Harp singing on Saturday, and I went to Yoshi’s jazz club in the evening. At the Sacred Harp convention I met Mary McDonald-Lewis, who came down from Washington state to sing. It turns out I’ve heard her voice before–she’s the voice of GM’s OnStar in-car voice recognition system. There’s a great fun MP3 of her demoing her voice on her website at marymac.com.
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(Apex is the Autonomy architecture that I hack on.)
While poking around as I created my previous post, I discovered that the LaTeX sources for printing algorithms in the style used in Introduction to Algorithms is available from Thomas H. Cormen’s website. Below are examples of an insertion sort algorithm typeset using Cormen’s style, and the same algorithm typeset using the standard “algorithm” package. Which do you like better?
I had a small ‘ah-hah’ experience while reading Implementing sets efficiently in a functional language. Descriptions of binary tree sorting/searching algorithms, such as the excellent Introduction to Algorithms, state that items to be sorted have to be strictly ordered, which means you can’t have duplicates in the tree. But this is easily solved by storing duplicates together in the same binary tree node. “The implementing sets” article suggests adding a ‘count’ field to the node, which marks how many copies are in the node. Often, though, the key and value of a node are different–which suggests that (if the values are strictly ordered as well) you can use the same kind of binary tree to store values. Often it is the insertion order that matters, in which case this can be used as a key.