Today is another one of those “special” days.  But not one that most normal people know about.  Today is pi-day.  Or more specifically, 3.14.  March 14th.  This “holiday” works while the American system for displaying dates, which most of the rest of the world considers wrong, unfortunately, we’re America, and quite frankly, most of us don’t care what the rest of the world thinks of us.  And that’s what’s makes us great.

Any Hootie and the Blowfish, back to the matter at hand.  Pi day, today.  Today has a very special connection in the history of Pi day because it’s the once in a century that we get more than high school levels of significant figures.  Yes, today, using the time, we can get 7 full significant figures of accuracy (3.141592653).  More if you go into the millisecond range.  But you shouldn’t because that’s silly.

  • 3 – Month of March
  • 14 – 14th day of the month
  • 15 – Year 2015
  • 9 – 9 AM
  • 26 – Minutes past 9AM
  • 53 – Seconds into the minute, one more and we can’t get to the moon anymore because our aim is off

In honor of this momentous occasion, this post is being published at 5 significant digits.  I could tell you it’s 7, but how would you know.  You’ll have a hard enough time even seeing if this is at 5.  Oh well.  Enjoy your Pi today America, you’ve earned it.

a stumble computer games internet

Physics is Fun


Chaotic Pendulum aims to take the physics of gravity and show you how that force effects different connected masses.   It’s quite fun to play with, one of those endlessly fun websites that has some science attached to it, but is really just a useless game.  I spent some time making some pendulums.  The sharing tool doesn’t seem to work because no matter what I do, I always get a pendulum that starts out different then the one I made.  Oh well, randomize it anyway.

awesome computer science video

How Sorts Work

Sorting things is hard, there’s various different methods involved, some better than others based on the data you’re given and so on.  All of them are involved be it memory, or time.  Some are easy to explain, but overall unless you’re really paying attention to the math at hand, you don’t get it.  This is where the AlgoRythmics YouTube channel comes in.  They use traditional Hungarian folk dancing to visually explain 6 of the most common sorting methods.  It’s very easy to see how the algorithms work.  If it’s not, I think it should be included in introductory classes


awesome computer electronic news internet science strange video

Manual Bitcoin Mining is Useless

Manual Bitcoin mining

Computers really are magical machines.  Unfortunately, it’s not until you do some things by hand that you truly appreciate it for yourself.  Ken Shirriff can now appreciate computers better than anyone I know.  You see, he decided he wanted to mine his own Bitcoins, by hand.  Using a paper and pencil.  At first glance you’d think that that’s impossible.  Well, it’s not, apparently it’s a rather simple process, if you’re a math major.  But he outlines the whole process and the calculations needed and everything.

His initial time took just under 17 minutes to mine a single block.  To put that into comparision, current dedicated hardware can mine bitcoin blocks a quintillion times faster than that.  If that’s not enough, someone on reddit asked him how much energy he expended doing this.  He’s 10 quadrillion times less efficient than the above chip.  And the cost of this, (just the energy, pencil and paper wasn’t included), was 67 quadrillion times less efficient.  Truly this is the wave of the future.  I can see hipsters mining this at coffee shops right now.

He even has a video of himself doing it, it’s 8 minutes long:


internet science

Tile Inception


Or, more correctly called, Rep-tiles, not to be confused with the dinosaurs of the same name, are a quark of geometry.  Each individual tile can be combined to make the themselves.  It goes on forever.  The above set is not the only type either.  There’s many other patterns.  It’s pretty cool, not really sure what purpose they serve, but cool nonetheless.  If you get into symmetry, you can get fractals out of it.

{Futility Closet}

a stumble computer games internet

2048 – Addicting


I’m almost sorry for unleashing this addicting game on you, almost.  2048 has the simple concept of combining same numbered tiles together doubling their values from 2 – 2048.  It’s simple, yet addicting.  The exact requirements for wasting hours of your life in front of a computer.

It combines math, and puzzle, and future thinking all in one to make you figure out how to keep the game going.  As you can see, my best is getting to the 512 tile mark.  And I’ve spent more time then I care to admit this weekend playing it.  Maybe one day I’ll beat it, maybe.  Post you’re high scores, or if you beat it here.  I’d love to see how long it takes, if it’s possible.

{Boing Boing}

awesome internet science


This is truly a mesmerizing site.  You don’t need to be a math enthusiast, or a lover of fractals, or a web developer to appreciate this.  This site takes you through the numbers 1 – 10,000 and shows them at the most basic roots.  With special design given to the PRIMES.

I love it.

prime 43


The show really gets started when it hits the 100s.  Luckily for you, there’s a fast forward button on the bottom where you can speed it up.  I didn’t realize this until it hit the end.

When it gets high into the 100s, and then the 1,000s though, the groups are very very small, (unless you have a retina screen I guess that is), and it’s hard to see, but it’s still mesmerizing, in fact, more so I’d say at that level.

the max

{reddit|Data Pointed}


Commie Bugs from Mars

commie bug bastards

This my friends, is one of the strangest games, I have ever had the pleasure of playing on the internet.  Strange, but somewhat enjoyable, except the stupid text adventure part where I spent like a full day with it open trying to figure it out.  Frog Fractions, has some innovative parts to it.  But the stupid text adventure, unlike chris, I went through the text adventure, unfortunately, I only made it halfway through before i went searching for help on tamoxifen the internet, I found it, then beat it.

The ending is satisfying, if only because you know you made it through the stupid text adventure part.

No replay value though, so it’s no Pandemic.  But deffiently play it for the laughs, there’s enough of them.

DIY the greatest

Unfun Where’s Waldo

found waldo

Where’s Waldo is a great series of books, and I remember spending tons of time reading them and trying to find Waldo and all the other hidden things that were on each drawing.  I thought it was especially annoying when some of them appeared on the crease in the middle of the pages.

Oh well.  Stackoverflow user Heike used computers to do the job of children.  What’s next? Computers doing the jobs of other computers?

I mean, it’s a pretty nice way to show how you can intelligently analyze an image using software, and I have to say, there are ton’s of uses for that, but I’m sure most of them are already in use right now.


a stumble awesome computer DIY internet

MOAR STUMBLES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1!!!!!!!!!!!!

It’s stumbles time.  First one of 2011.  And how can we make 2011 any better then 2010, well, with more wrongness.  Sadly, I don’t think this quite matches up to some of the previous wrong stumbles.  But it has some awesome things in it, so that’s good enough.

Anyway, take a gander after the link if you want to look at them, and if you’re reading these via RSS, no clicking needed, enjoy.