Where do you get the ideas for your experiments from?
I get the ideas for my experiments from nature, long
standing principles of computer science, and texts on
What/who are your
sources of inspiration?
I am inspired to program in Flash because of the huge
audience capable of viewing the work. My original motivation
to really learn the language was Joshua Davis and his work
at Praystation. The things he was doing with the web in 2000
were enough to keep me writing code through the cumbersome
drop down menus of Flash 4.
Where do you see
digital lifeform experiments in 20 years?
In 20 years experiments in digital life will be walking the
halls and plugging themselves in at night. I see an
unbounded world of computational life exhibiting all the
hardships, triumphs, and blasted weirdness of organic life.
What was the First
roadblock you experienced with Flash?
My first roadblock with Flash was the confusion resulting
from the large number of places in which code could be
placed. Never before had I seen a programming language where
the code was applied on the object it was describing.
Eventually I learned to love this particular feature. This
pretty much sums up the ongoing relationship I have had with
would you say to those who want to learn advanced
ActionScript? Credentials? Programming experience?
Which books would you recommend, if any?
For those who want to learn advanced ActionScript, I would
say 'do something everyday'. Even if it's just a simple
program that pushes squares around, the experience of
actually working within the development environment is
incomparable. Force yourself to use a particular feature
even when the result is a nonsensical SWF lying dormant
somewhere across the hard drive.
What would you like to see in the
next Flash release?
I would like to see some sort of a 'drop to bitmap'
function, allowing quick and efficient translation of a
movieclip into its bitmap representation. Then of course
there would need to be a whole set of functions to
manipulate the bitmap plane, which is way outside the scope
of Flash. Nevertheless, when I am building constructs out of
thousands of static, unresponsive movieclips, it would be
nice to 'photograph' them so as to free computational
Which features/tools do you use
most in Flash? What's your favorite ActionScript
function/tool? (like: setInterval, attachMovie, etc.)
The tool I most often use in Flash MX is 'Align'.
'attachMovie' is without question my favorite Flash
ActionScript command. Many who have seen my work understand
immediately that I am a big fan of both recursive
construction and dynamic instantiation. Without those
particular techniques, I would most likely be working in a
What other programs are you avidly
interested in besides Flash?
I am most avid about tools and applications I can use to
visualize larges sets of information. Terragen fits into
this category. So does 3D Studio Max.
If you were given
the chance to meet one person, past or present, who would it
be and why?
Nikola Tesla because he lived in Colorado and was an insane
Jared Tarbell (levitated.net)
for agreeing to answer the questions the moderators and
Kirupa had for him. Thanks to the moderator vts31 and the rest who helped provide the
for this interview before Kirupa eagerly e-mailed them to