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Month of Jack Robinson

After a three-month hiatus, my blog is back, and it’s back with a themed month. In March last year, I did a “month of Vidrio”, developing my screencasting app. This August, I’m doing a “month of Jack Robinson”.

Jack Robinson is an instant messaging application where every character you type is shown in realtime. In all significant chat applications today, your message with everyone else when you hit “submit”. Jack Robinson removes the “submit” button. Your message enters the chat history when you start it, and your message is shared as you type it.

As your brain forms words, they are rendered as speech, then transmitted as sound, then heard by the ear. People in the telecoms industry refer to “mouth-to-ear delay”. The “quality of a call degrades rapidly where the mouth-to-ear delay latency exceeds 200 milliseconds”.

In instant messaging, the equivalent measure is “finger-to-eye delay”. Your brain renders words as keypresses, which are displayed as text, then seen by the eye. In Slack, Whatsapp, and any other instant messaging application, the finger-to-eye delay is several seconds. When I press a key, the character is not shared until I hit “submit” several seconds later.

Email  -->  Slack  -->  Jack Robinson

This is how human conversation works.

There’s a demo version here.

What can computers do? What are the limits of mathematics? And just how busy can a busy beaver be? This year, I’m writing Busy Beavers, a unique interactive book on computability theory. You and I will take a practical and modern approach to answering these questions — or at least learning why some questions are unanswerable!

It’s only $9, and you can get 50% off if you find the discount code ... Not quite. Hackers use the console!

After months of secret toil, I and Andrew Carr released Everyday Data Science, a unique interactive online course! You’ll make the perfect glass of lemonade using Thompson sampling. You’ll lose weight with differential equations. And you might just qualify for the Olympics with a bit of statistics!

It’s $29, but you can get 50% off if you find the discount code ... Not quite. Hackers use the console!

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Tagged #jackrobinson. All content copyright James Fisher 2018. This post is not associated with my employer. Found an error? Edit this page.