[A Buggy Ant] - A New Kind of Science: The NKS Forum
A New Kind of Science: The NKS Forum
A Buggy Ant(Click here to view the original thread with full colors/images)
Posted by: Philip Ronald Dutton
About a year ago I was in a small city park sitting on a bench. I looked down at the ground and saw a tiny ant crawling in a circle not unlike the way in which a dog chases its tail. I immediately assumed it was confused by the chemical signals of other ants. As such, I predicted the behavior would subside within a few seconds. So I waited.... and waited... and waited. Nothing changed. I thought perhaps the ant would need some help to get out of it's chemical entrapment. So I slipped a piece of paper under it. I lifted the ant from it's world up to mine thinking the fresh breeze at my lap's height would clear the chemical traces and allow it to resume normal behavior. Nothing changed. It continued chasing its tail on my clean sheet of paper. So I began to walk to my car hoping to bring the tail-chasing ant to my friends so they would see it with their own eyes and not think I was completely crazy. I was delicately holding the paper as I walked up a hill. I was completely mesmerized by this abnormal behavior- was the ant's navigation system buggy? I began to get very excited about what I was holding. It was a rare specimen indeed. I quickly glanced to the parking lot and then looked back down to my delicate cargo. It was gone... I dropped it! I looked everywhere in the grass but couldn't find it after several minutes of search! It was then that I realized just how hard NKS can really be at times.
Posted by: Steve Zimmerman
It's probably a lot easier for the ant.
Posted by: Leighton
NKS and mathematics are the only borderzone left that is hard to teach. The application programs have excellent tutorials created. I grew up with the Amiga. Like Mathematica it required you to learn language to communicate and your programming got better as you clarified things.
NKS needs to develop a Buddy system for it. The way the Amiga BuddySystem Instead of explaining things. Created an entire right brain set of excercises pertinent to the subject. It wasn't just explanations. It was the mouse clicks. Property Bar Settings. Coordinate relocation. Stuff pertinant to appreciating an environment.
Very different than the VTC Tutorials which also are great. But very different from the Amiga Tutorials
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