Very intense 2 months coding marathon to bring into the world the new version of Mandalagaba.

I completely rewrote the symmetry engine to be universal. When I coded the first version, I only wanted to scratch a specific radial symmetry itch and had to expand on narrowly conceived code to accommodate for features that came up from the tool’s success. With this new version, I instead gave myself a broad framework built for expansion, I can translate any penstroke at any angle in any location. Beyond mandalas, it makes possible tessellations and even the 2 combined.

I used the opportunity to add many features which were lacking: zooming, forking, lines, color picker, et cetera. With many more to come. The interface was rethought to be more accessible. Doing so took much more time than building the core engine.

There is an obscene amount of math that goes behind every pen stroke you draw in the tool. It was kind of fun to go through it again in my life, 20 years later. Even though I had forgotten about it all, it came back nicely. It’s amazing to have the internet as a tool to look up methods, to be able to describe the problem in plain English and have potential solutions thrown at you. It used to be that you needed to know what you needed precisely to find it in a book.


I love that Robin copies what I do no matter the understanding level, we’ve had lots of talks about what is going on.

It’s not just the math but also algorithms, languages & infrastructure. Not to toot my own horn but in my 30s, I’ve never felt so intimate with every aspect of an idea’s implementation. It’s extremely enabling to know exactly where to go to achieve X. Honestly though I’m a little burnt out at the moment, something that was supposed to take 10 days took more than 2 months of coding every single night.

My hope is that the new tool becomes a reference online for this type of work. And it’s all 100% free; well… we’ll talk about that in the next post.

Lower tech fun found in a thrift shop

We woke up to a world encased in ice

We have had ice storms before but this one was particularly thorough in covering every nook in cranny of our land.

The sun shone through pine trees and it looked just like a Christmas tree decorated with lights so I updated the list of traditions I understood since moving to Vermont.

I almost plowed what snow we had before the ice came, but in talking to a friend, she brought up letting the ice accumulate on the snow rather than on the ground so it’s easier to kick out.  Duh, what kind of flatlander doesn’t know that.

The storms are rolling in one after another, the tractor has been invaluable in taking care of all this snow. We have great paths, a flat driveway, and all I had to do was push a button and joyride around.

With all this snow and ice, the trees are taking a beating.

On the less glamorous side of things, emptying the portable toilet is a full on arctic expedition these days. We lost access to the septic tank and really, I prefer it this way.

We started on an igloo 🙂 this is the closed I’ve gotten to building one. We’ll see if we can finish the critical top.