I found this video on a blog a couple days ago. It is a very simple idea, but quite fun to watch. Job Wouters, a graphic artist from the Netherlands, displays his remarkable talent for freehand drawing of letters while his 5 year-old son tries to follow along. Seeing this really makes me want to learn calligraphy.

Theme update

I am in the middle of updating my theme. I am doing it "live", so it is very much a work in progress and many things might be broken or look funny. I am liking the black and white look, though.

Our first loaf of sourdough

First loaf of sourdough Returning from a long blogging hiatus... Phyllis and I baked our first ever loaf of sourdough today. We made our own starter earlier in the week, mixed the dough this morning, let it rise most of the day, and baked it just before dinner. We were highly skeptical that it would work since things started rather ominously: our Cuisinart refused to continue processing while we were adding flour to adjust the consistancy of the dough. Furthermore, our dough was more of a puddy than I am used to.

In any case, there is room for improvement, but we can't complain with our first results. The loaf has a firm, crispy crust and the interior is soft and delicious. Yum!

The Pirate Puzzler

Since my prisoners' hats post seems to be the most frequently read post on my blog, I thought I'd put up another riddle. This was one of my favorites that a friend told me when he was practicing for finance job interviews.

4 pirates come across 1000 gold pieces. After a fair amount of arguing, the following system is chosen for divvying up the loot:

  • The pirates will draw straws. The order of straws will determine a fixed order for the remainder of the divvying process.
  • The first pirate (from the straw order) will propose a distribution of the gold. This proposal is put to a vote. If a majority (greater than 50%) of the pirates agree on the proposal, they distribute the gold appropriately and they are done. Otherwise, the first pirate is killed and they move onto the next pirate.
  • Assume that pirates are perfectly rational actors that vote based upon the following desired outcomes (in preferred order):
    1. A pirate wants to live.
    2. All else being equal, a pirate wants the most gold.
    3. If a pirate is going to live and will get the same amount of gold through two different outcomes, the pirate will vote to see more blood.

Given all of this, what does the first pirate propose, and what is the maximum amount of gold he can take?

Superbowl Commercials

A lot of good superbowl commercials this year. My favorite is a toss-up between two Bud Light Commercials:

The GM: Robot commercial would probably be next in my list. You can view more superbowl commercials on the iFilm website.