5.02.2008

How I have missed you during my uneventful absence

I am looking at 470px-Tree_Rotations.gif. The image depicts the stages of transformation in an AVL tree rotation. The key players here are the Root and the Pivot, who trade places in order to balance the tree. "Root is the initial parent and Pivot is the child to take the root's place" is the caption in its entirety.

I am neither an engineer nor mathematician nor computer scientist by formal training, and so the deep dives I make below the surface of my work are themselves indefinite walks, parsing down to some terminal meaning that, for me, anchors the search and initiates the slow climb back up to full comprehension.

The acronym AVL stands for Adelson-Velsky & Landis, the researchers credited with realizing this structure, a data tree that works by rotating members at a point of imbalance. In a rotation, the root node detaches from the pivot node and attaches to one of the pivot's children. The pivot then attaches to the root. The whole idea is to reduce the average time cost of searching such a data structure for the node you want. I presume the mathematics behind this guarantee that the time cost of rotations will wash out in the time saved by a more efficient search, but for some reason I don't want to burrow into math jargon just yet.

You might like to know what's been going on here since September 20, 2007. I have, however, kept AVLs on a back burner for a long time. This is also the first chance I have had in a while to stare at anything that wasn't an impending life change, a matter of staying present in the lives of people dear to me, an opaque tax rule, or anything else that might trip the doom-saying inner voice, you'll be sorry if you don't do this now.

Well, ok, there's also been a no small amount of Facebook farting around, once the rest of the mind tells the doomsayer to go screw. I gots me $300k in fake poker money, a squidlian brain, a word IQ ranging from 143 to 635 -- each word game proposes its own scale -- and badges of add-on crap I purge with a great Mormon vigor every now and then.

It's been a full five years since I moved out and thought about starting my life over. Or not. Last week, my sweetie and I drove her stuff from Brooklyn to the Bay Area. Then I got a root planing. There's a bunch of other stuff, but what with the boxes in the garage and the tore-up gums, it may be a few more bumps in the dark and bloody flossings before I recall them well enough to write them.

Meanwhile, hello. I have missed you.

3 comments:

SkylersDad said...

Welcome back good sir, you were missed!

Michael said...

:)

ttractor said...

how odd, I miss you too. now that you have someone to clean your house, do your laundry, make your meals and beat your smart-assed children, for the love of christmas, will you please write more?