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Creation Date: 2002-05-26
Hiya, I told ya I'd give you a bit of an update. I'm working hard and trying to do stuff. It's just not working so well. I cannot wait until June 10th or so. I am planning to work for for my old boss on some things he wants finished from my old project. I'm going to look for a job also. I'm also going to start on the first part of my N-part affordable housing revolution. The first part will be not too revolutionary, but rather just silly. Click here to see what my Part 1 is going to entail. So you see, it'll be pretty simple.

But you don't want to hear about my philanthropy. You want a lesson about this picture. Believe it or not, it's a part of my CAS3DCamera project. You probably are aware that cameras are an important part of a 3D engine. I've been using a WASD camera that is very lame. It works at high fps, but it is arse at low fps. It is totally dependent on frame rate. What does the problem manifest itself as? At low fps, the camera throws itself left, right, back and forth. Why? Because every frame it divides the velocity by the elapsed time. If that is small, it is fine. If it is big, we get problems. Guess who uses my same camera? Half-Life. How do I know? The problem manifests itself when you're trying to make a real-time movie. So my solution? Solidity with a accelerated particle physics model. No matter the frame rate, this will solidly go from zero velocity, linearally to maximum velocity when you press a button, linearally to zero when you let go of the button, and it will stay at zero. So where did this picture come from? It was made by GNUPlot (my favorite free grapher) from data I made from this webpage. Beware, that webpage can crash your computer if you ask it for too much. For example, keep the dt >= 0.1 and the t_stop < 10. So from that table you can copy it to Notepad and save it as pos.dat. Then you plot it in GNUPlot and that's what you see here. Of course, I added velocity and acceleration plots as well from the same data. But you see how extremely cool this is, right? You press the button and the thing happens. When you let go, the velocity falls to zero linearly and stops (unlike Half-Life's exponential decay). I converted it to c++ and I'm still trying to get it to work. 3d is a bit harder, but not by much. I'll have myself a perfect camera in no time.

Rent is good here in my apartment in Seattle, WA. I found the cheapest place around at $280 + utilities (~$40-$60). The room is 11'x17' on the second floor of a large house. There are seven people here (eight possible) and we split the utilities equally. The five upstairs people share a bathroom and a large kitchen. The two basement people share their own basement bath and kitchen also. People with larger rooms than mine pay up to $350. The house is what many would call run down. I call it perfect. For quite a while, our shower stall paint was peeling. One of my housemates had the brilliant idea to ask. That very next day, the landlord came to put in new shower stall walls. It took a full week, so we had to all share the basement bathroom, but it was worth it. Today I broke the washer (accidentally) and I called my landlord. It's Memorial Day tomorrow, so I don't expect to get any progress until Tuesday, but I bet my landlord will fix it on Tuesday. All my housemates are really nice and I always feel like I'm that punk guy on MTV's "The Real World" even though I'm a quiet and nice physicist. The thing is that to minimize problems and make sure the people are good, my landlords ask for three good references. It really ensures the quality of the renters.

On February 18th, I witnessed the police shoot a man to death across the street from my yard. Is that my landlord's fault? Certainly not. To keep rent low, they have to buy run down houses that are in not so nice places. Still, this is the high-class University District, not South Central LA. I picked to live here, so I dwell here happily. I plan to make my neighborhood better, but I have to wait a few weeks until school is over. [Part 1/N] I'm thinking on a weekly litter pickup, sidewalk trimming, gardening for donations, cheap house-painting, and possibly a Food Not Bombs event for homeless people who live on my street. The man who was shot was homeless and lived in his car on my street. There's a lot of homeless people on my street. It's nice for them because it's up against the freeway sound wall and most people on my block are sympathetic.

My landlords have several houses in the University District and they are extremely good landlords giving what people want for a price that they can afford. My only worry is that if they ever want to retire and sell it, we may be in for a fleecing. Compared to any that I found within five miles, this is by far the best deals. The best competitor was $400 plus utilities for a much worse place. Most of the apartments around here are around $500 per month. If you're looking for a nice cheap place, Espen Properties is it.

I say that my landlords are the solution to bad landlords. If a few good landlords like mine found good renters that wanted to live in nice houses for cheap, it would become so popular that lowering the price would be more profitable. Bad landlords that charge too much would go broke. They would have to sell their houses to those who give cheap rent. Every landlord would have to lower their price to compete. The renters would take more pride in their houses and keep them in good repair. The landlords would be happy to make more money while working less.

I propose an affordable housing revolution that will leave all parties happier. Who on this list is with me?

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