Project proposal: Penrose
john.r.rose at oracle.com
Wed Jan 11 17:05:45 PST 2012
Here's quick comment; I've hesitated several times because I dislike name-choosing discussions.
I assume you chose the name Penrose to honor the creator of the world's cleverest tesselation algorithm. So far so good.
Note that he is (a) still living and presumably highly interested in other people's use of his name, and (b) far more famous for his non-recreational math and physics. For both reasons I suggest another name could work better for a software modularity project.
(Point (b) seems to me a little like naming a violin after Einstein, although Penrose tiling is a unique achievement. Actually, IIRC, there was an attempt to market a cigar or cigarette called "Relativity" when Einstein was newly famous.)
Now I'll stick my neck out even farther: Perhaps you already thought of this, but the grand master (before Roger Penrose) of tessellations is M.C. Escher, and this is a primary basis of his fame, at least among geeks. Also, it would honor Penrose indirectly to name Escher in a "tiling" project; see the last paragraphs of:
(Of course, maybe there is already an Escher modularity project, and this is the latest escalation of clever nomenclature. How about "Tesseract", then: Tiling in a new dimension?)
None of this is to dishonor Roger Penrose himself, whose books I find delightful and instructive. If nobody shares my scruples (a) and (b), I'll be happy to forget about them. In fact, I just did, anyway.
More information about the discuss