Wednesday, 11 April 2012

A lot of coding, a lot of threading

I seem to be getting a lot quicker at threading through. I did about 1600 threads today in 5 hours or so without getting a sore back. That's new.

anyway, still have 800 threads to go, so a few hours tomorrow then an hour sleying the reed and another hour or two making peg plans.

speaking of which...

I shouldn't be having to do the whole peg-plan thing for much longer, if all goes well. I've been working pretty solidly over my easter break on coding for my dobby controller. It's a lot of fun, and I'm learning a lot in the process. I have my last 12 servos on order and am waiting to go into the city campus to borrow a servo controller for them. Until then I'm limited to 8 servos, as the Arduino apparently won't take more than that at any one time. How annoying.

Oh well, I just have to wait a week or so and then I'm ready to go. Also, the week that I have to wait about for the guy who i'm borrowing the control board from to get back from abroad gives me time to work on a casing for the servos and the control hardware.

It'd be nice to have it all mounted on something slightly more professional looking than some mounting card from last year.

Hey ho. Anyway, one of the things I want to do with this gizmo is implement Wolfram's Rules. In particular, Rule 30 and Rule 110. They produce apparently random (but not) results. I've written some simple scripts in python (woooh! python!) to generate these rules and output the results to screen. It shouldn't be too difficult to export the algorithms to the arduino for to generate lifting plans from them. Of course, the outputs aren't quite as interesting on a smaller repeat.

Another thing that might be wanted to do is to write a quick script that'll check each possible variation to make sure it falls within certain boundaries (like maximum float length, for instance) and then return a list of all applicable initial conditions.

This raises an interesting philosophical proposal. If the rules of nature are set, immutable and conceivable, then the condition of the totality of all existence can be predicted with a mathematical algorithm of sufficient complexity.

Personally, I don't feel any those three conditions are true. This isn't based on any understanding of physics at any advanced level. I actually suspect my belief in the essential unknowableness of the universe and the primacy of chaos and entropy has infected my thinking at every level. I also believe this is the case with pretty much anyone.

Do you think there is a reason?

Do concious beings have free will?

Is destiny set?

Will I succeed in growing lettuce this year or will the slugs get them again?


Laura said...

Andrew, I'm just curious if you are getting info on good posture at the loom? It seems to be something that is lacking in many weaving courses geared towards training people for 'industry'....

Andrew Kieran said...

Hi Laura

We've had a turnover of technicians recently, the old technician was a handweaver who was very insistent that when weaving we move the beater with our waist rather than our elbow. Our new technician was an industrial weaver and as such has little insight into the back problems associated with weaving.

I am always very careful not to put my body into stressful situations as I know the damage it can cause very quickly from experience not only in weaving but also in heavy manual labour. If it hurts a little bit every time you do it, it's causing damage.

I suspect that unless care is taken the new intake of students will learn to weave without learning the techniques you use to avoid crippling yourself.

As far as threading through goes, we tie the front cross onto the back of the shafts, which are suspended on bars inside the loom. we sit on a board inside the loom while threading and sleying.The cross is best tied up so that it hangs on the back of the shafts with the top stick of the cross near the top of the back shaft. The cross should be at eye-height, as it's the place you're going to be craning to see the most when picking threads out with the hook.

I'll have some pictures and video taken next time i'm preparing a loom.

You use back-to-front warping method don't you? I think I've seen it on some of your posts. Here we tie the warp directly onto the warp beam and then stretch and space the warp and wind directly on, wide to narrow, without edge-cards or warp sticks. It works very well with short warps that aren't too dense, though you tend to start having sloppy edges if your warp is long, dense and wide (as mine is). still, wool is a very forgiving substance.

Anyway, short answer to your question. We aren't taught proper posture, but luckily the technique we are taught here leads to proper posture for anyone of average or short height. tall people have problems. but i don't think these are insurmountable