I was asked by trixxanna to comment on the following from my interests list. I have to say, she made some good choices. She also managed to choose thing that got me talking, not that that is all that hard, but I'm going to put my answers under a cut since my responses top 800 words.
Mystery Science Theater 3000, the greatest idea for a television show ever conceived by anyone. The first episode appeared on KTMA-TV in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area. The concept was simply brilliant. This guy, Joel, was stranded on a space ship by and evil scientist and force-fed cheesy movies as a psychological experiment. He built himself a few robot pals and together they would watch these movies and comment on them. The show was absolutely hysterical and I was hooked after the very first episode I saw on cable.
Basically, a fractal is a design derived from a mathematical equation that is iterated. Think of it this way, You take a basic equation, plug in a value, you get an answer. You take that answer and plug it back into the original equation, you get another answer. Repeat. Different things happen depending upon the equation, the value you start with, and other initial conditions; the values will either be chaotic (no pattern), stabilize (even out to a single value), begin to repeat, or shoot off to infinity. You plot a color or shape based on the outcome and you get some pretty wild images. There are some examples on my graphics website: http://www.barahalphoto.net/fractal/fractals.htm
Most of you know that I am a math teacher. Some of you have asked how I became a math teacher. This sometimes boggles some people since I am also literate. Well, here is your answer. When I first started college in 1983 I was an English major. The school I was going to at the time required everyone to take a math class. I actually dreaded the thought of that. I decided to just get it over with my freshman year so I could get on with my Literature degree. So I took a class with this dude, whom I later became friends with, that was just supposed to be a general math class for non-math majors. The class was a survey class and one of the topics covered was iterative processes and he talked about fractal graphics. Keep in mind, this was before real personal computers were invented. Anyway, the idea intrigued me enough to want to know more. The problem was I didn’t know enough math. So I moved up to the next math class, and the next. I discovered that I had a talent for it and ended up with a Master’s degree in theoretical mathematics. And, believe me, no one was more surprised than I was by this. My Master’s Thesis was on fractal processes.
Grand Theft Auto. Yes I’m a gamer. Yes I love Grand Theft Auto. I’ve played every version of this game there is, except for the new one because I do not have an Xbox360, a situation I hope to remedy very soon. There is just something about being able to create wanton destruction on a huge scale without fear of consequences that really appeals to me. It’s a great way to relieve stress.
He wrote a wonderful series of books that go under the general title of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy; the story of Arthur Dent, a typical earthling, who upon finding out about the destruction of his home and subsequently his planet, is whisked away by his best friend who turns out to be an alien from another planet. It is the story of his trek around the universe and through time. It is a wonderful fantasy story and very funny.
Well, let’s see. I started reading fanfiction many years ago on fanfiction.net. I was a huge fan of the X-Files and went looking for some Mulder-Scully fiction since the show always seemed to gloss over it. Keep in mind this is going back at least ten years. I was happy with my het tendencies back then as they translated well into many other fandoms. Well, then, a few years ago I ran across a story by the wonderfully talented Bj Jones (sorry Bev I can’t remember exactly which one it was, but I know it was yours) that was a Horatio/Speed slash story and I was hooked. Two years ago I started writing my own slash stories and aside from a few here and there that still come out as het, I am a slash writer to this day.
This is the role-play writer’s group that was started by Bj Jones that I joined last year. I role-play Fox Mulder from the X-Files and it’s a huge amount of fun. I’ve met some great people, some very talented slash writers, and the group has become a second family to me. Sylum Rocks!
What can I say? I’m a fan. a huge fan. He’s a talented actor and I like the fact that he chooses, almost exclusively, to act in independent films. He’s had some great roles and seems to be willing to take on very different personas and do it successfully. I thinkwishmaster_kami has the best word for Rory Cochrane on one of her icons which is “scruffmuffin”.