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    Oh, neat. But why did the author not use “standard” knitting notation? I would have expected k and p instead of * and _. I suppose because knitting notation depends on natural languages, so she didn’t want to base it off English? I only know how to knit in English and Spanish. I wonder if Japanese also uses different notation.

    Btw, being a knitter is somewhat like being a compiler. You read knitting instructions and you compile a sweater out of them. The best knitters are also programmers who write their own knitting instructions. And the bestest knitters, such as the peerless Elizabeth Zimmerman, don’t use source code at all.

    Ah, this comes from a jsconf presentation. I was wondering how knitting made it to Lobsters.

    Any other knitters here in Lobsters? My Ravelry profile.

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      A couple nice things about this notation vs k/p. 1) You don’t have to know anything about knitting terminology if you just want to play with making pretty patterns. 2) You can get an ascii-art style visual representation from just looking at your “code”, as long as you include linebreaks. (this could be even better if a different font/linespacing were used!) So I like it!

      So Elizabeth Zimmerman is a compiler that doesn’t need source code to produce a program?! :o

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        Well, one of the biggest things that EZ (pbuh) advocated was to not be a slave to the pattern. Her basic tenet is that knitters need to find their own way, make their own mistakes, and grow their own intuition about how to measure and how to recover from errors. So, to make a bad analogy with programmers, EZ is kind of like a lisper. You should have homoiconic knitting instructions that you can adapt to any situation; you should grow your own vocabulary.

        While she does give patterns for very specific parts of some pieces, her overall instructions are intentionally less, well, mechanical for the rest of the piece. Instead of treating knitters as if they should carefully follow each and every step of a pattern from beginning to end, she gives broad strokes about what the overall design of a piece should be.

        She’s also very funny.

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      Well that was fun for about 3 minutes…