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Being Creative: Feynman Bug & Zeus Swan


This is actually an idea I had quite some time ago but didn't get around to making it until recently. It's an extension of the "Darwin Fish" idea, which in turn is a response to the "Jesus Fish". I guess it struck me one day that a Feynman diagram could perhaps be distorted to look like a fish with "FEYNMAN" inside it. I recall doing a little googling for suitable starting diagrams without much luck. Also, I was unsure how to create it, I think I was considering doing it freehand in PhotoShop or Paint. But then recently I was doing some PostScript coding, and decided I could code the image. I did some googlin' and found this diagram:
Feynman diagram
I wrote some PostScript code to create bowed out squiggly lines. Then I sketched the FEYNMAN character shapes on graph paper and built an array of the vertices and some code to draw their outlines (distorted in the same way as the squiggly lines) and fill them:
Feynman "bug" - not so good
The characters looked a bit ugly and the linear distortion away from the centerline didn't look very nice either. I decided to stroke the characters out with a thick pen. This looked much nicer (once I'd tweaked setlinecap, setlinejoin and setmiterlimit). I then wrote the code to add the other lines and the blobs at the vertices. I started to enhance it to add the arrows as well, but decided not to bother, and to only show two blobs, as the "eyes" of the bug:
Feynman "bug" - better
(I also added a frame and a tiny "Mark" designature.) The whole thing is about 340 lines of not very elegant PostScript code. The source is here a PDF is here.

This got me thinking about other responses to the J-fish. The Darwin and Feynman critters are making a point about the rational world vs the irrational. I thought about making a point about "deities" in general and came up with the Zeus "Swan":
Zeus "swan"
This is basically a horrible hack of the Feynman PostScript code to get the body and text. Adding the neck and head had me stumped for a long time since I imagined the neck raised up off the body. I couldn't come up with an easy way to code it so in the end I went with it down against the body. I think it gives it a "come hither" look. The source is here a PDF is here.
On my car

On my car

In case you don't know, in Greek mythology, Zeus seduced Leda while disguised as a swan.