# Re: algorithms for dance

Richard Grevers (*grevers@unforgettable.com*)

*Thu, 16 Apr 1998 23:43:29*

*>*

*>****************************************************************

*>http://www2.baldwinw.edu/~rmolmen/150dir/150mt_written_rev.html*

*>An algorithm is a set of instructions with four special characteristics.*

*>1. It is complete; all the steps are there, in the right order.*

Anyone care to figure whether the laws of commutivity or associativity

could apply to human motions?

*>2. It is correct, it always gets the right answer.*

Try asking artists to define or accept "right"? Must it always be the same

answer, or can we throw in a random number generator for fun? Of course

the outcome of an algorithm could be dependent on the starting conditions

or boundary conditions, which is another way of varying the answer.

*>3. It is finite; there is a stated way to know when it's done.*

hmm, I hadn't realised that an infinite series by definition is not an

algorithm. (And my dictionary confirms the finite bit). Computers calculate

many values by summing infinite series and stopping when they reach the

limit of their precision.

*>4. It is executable; all of the instructions can actually be carried out.*

Cheers

Richard Grevers

OnStage New Zealand

P O Box 3263, Christchurch 8015

ph/fax (3) 379-3094, cell 025-221-5053

email richard@onstage.net.nz