We had a reading of our computer generated novels yesterday. I loved listening to everyone’s work and learning how everyone approached coding their own novel. Each novel was vastly different from the next, but one thing we all had in common during the reading was knowing where to end. Since these novels were computer generated, they didn’t really have a plot, just a series of random events. Because of that it was hard for everyone to know where would be a good place to end. Some read just a paragraph. Some read a short chapter. Me? I coded a poem so I just ended after the first repeated stanza but even the stanzas were randomly generated so there could be identical stanza right next to each other. I just think it would be interesting to ask everyone why they chose to stop reading where they did. Maybe they just thought they were going on too long and wanted the embarrassment of public reading too end. idk.
Listening to everyone’s code generated text today in class was really interesting and a very fun experience! Each person had a different story/creation and I think it really spoke to their true character and true nature. I learned a lot about my classmates, while also learning about code.
Just like Alexandria, I don’t think I could choose a favorite. They were all so creative, clever, and different from one another and had qualities that stood out from one another. I really liked that!
I also think this mediation assignment has really helped me grasp coding on a deeper level. I hope that this skill will translate into my profession, whether I choose to pursue a career with Muggles or wizards!
I finally finished my novel today! What tedious work! The commas! Below is a sneak peak of my novel. It took hours to complete, but that’s nothing in comparison to those who write novels on their own without computer generated help.
As you can see I appropriated the Dr. Seuss poem “Oh The Places You’ll Go” because most of us, if not all of us, are seniors and so my goal was simply to change the poem to reflect the fears, failures, confusions, and successes that lay before us.
It’s officially April now which means Final Examinations start in a month. I’m slightly stressed but know that my time management skills will save me like they always do. I feel bad for my fellow students who wait until the last minute but it’s also frustrating when they complain how stressed they are. Perhaps if they hadn’t started working until the night before, then they would be less stressed?
Anywho. I’m finished with my coding generation and it was a lot less daunting than I thought it would be. That being said, I am very relieved that it’s done and I don’t have to worry about coding anymore for the time being!
Well, I’ve done it! I’ve generated code successfully and I’m thrilled with the end result. It’s a bit more humorous than my usual academic projects, but Harry and Ron think it’s hysterical. Ron doesn’t quite understand the references but Harry does. Many of my Muggle-born classmates also love it, so that is exciting for me! It’s not often that people like what I make because, well, I don’t make things a lot.
I hope I receive a good grade on it because I worked hard on it!
Just as Alexandria mentioned yesterday, spending time working in class with our professor has helped immensely and I feel more comfortable with coding now. I’m still slightly concerned as to how I’ll make it to 50,000 words. That’s a lot more words than it sounds like. Hopefully this week will offer me some time to work on it but also relax too, because I need that! It’s been a busy week and I’d like to keep some parts of it low-stress.
Coding to me seems like magic. A difficult concept, but easy once you get the hang of it. But once you feel you’ve gotten the hang of it, a new curveball is thrown at you and you can do nothing else but accept it and combat it. I can’t tell whether or not I’m looking forward to this project of generating 50,000 words through code. I think I’m at the point of “accept it and combat it” really.
Life is picking up fast and I’m running on very little sleep, but the weather is becoming slightly less dreary and cold which is absolutly perfect for me. Mondays are always tough too and I feel like I’m on edge. I’m trying to remember to relax. It’s proving quite difficult.
Remember our friend Nick Montfort? I don’t. The name sounds familiar but I don’t remember what we have read of him. I looked him up on Wikipedia and I scrolled through his website, but none of his works stand out to me. If you remember why I know this name, please share in the comments below!
Anyway, I found his NaNoGenMo Novel and thought it was the perfect one for this assignment. His novel Hard West Turn is based on recent events of violence in American history. With the march for gun control that took place this past weekend, I thought the topic was perfectly timed so I was set on studying this one.
From what I can tell, Montfort sources a lot of his content from wikipedia.
He also creates a lot of his own content to help create the narrative.
The main character in his novel is an unnamed man who contemplates a lot about the conflict of his love for his country and the issues within it in regards to mass shootings, gender issues, and religious issues.
Montfort also includes code to ensure that letters are capitalized properly when they are sourced from the outside. Most of his code seems easy to understand, but I’m still trying to figure out how he wrote the code so that these sources intermingled…
Parts of this code make sense. For example, “english” orders the computer to draw from wikipedia as stated in the first screenshot of code above. But I’m confused on the order in which it is commanding the sources be drawn on and how Montfort tells the computer when to start a new paragraph. I’m going to keep looking at this source and hopefully I’ll have more figured out by the time we have class on Monday. If so, I’ll add updates to this post.
UPDATE: Shortly after writing this I realized that Nick Montfort was the guy who wrote the book that taught us to code in Applied Digital Studies last semester.