Simulator

  • simulating "in head" vs "in computer" aka "playing computer"
  • related to Future Of Coding - "playing computer" is just silly
  • computers being able to simulate any other computers (ad infinitum) is an important computing idea that had to be invented! (Everything Was Invented)
  • taking a step back, Alan Kay keeps talking about computers as a meta-medium - one that can simulate any other one, and also one that allows us to create simulations to understand the world
  • references:

computation as simulation

Metaphor in User Interface Design

One of the realizations we had about computers in the 60s was that they give rise to new and more powerful forms of arguments about many important issues via dynamic simulations. That is, instead of making the fairly dry claims that can be stated in prose and mathematical equations, the computer could carry out the implications of the claims to provide a better sense of whether the claims constituted a worthwhile model of reality. And, if the general literacy of the future could include the writing of these new kinds of claims and not just the consumption (reading) of them, then we would have something like the next 50 year invention after the printing press that could very likely change human thought for the better.

— Alan Kay - The Real Computer Revolution Hasn't Happened Yet

  • computational (can simulate, calculate, etc...)
  • seeing the dynamic behaviour that is being created (simulator)
  • on the other hand, interactions can be interesting when playing with Simulations, trying to understand the parameter spaces, and get a feel for how things work
Szymon Kaliski © 2021
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