On Sun, Jun 27, 2004 at 10:47:41AM +0900, Gavin Kistner wrote:
> The Springz library allows you to attach two objects together (in 2D 
> space) with a spring, and simulate how they pull/push each other.

A library like this has a very large number of applications.  The most
obvious ones are in physics, but seeing this library reminded me of a
talk I saw by Jim Coplien a few years ago on organizational patterns,
where they found use for a similar library.  This page talks briefly
about it:

  http://www.easycomp.org/cgi-bin/OrgPatterns?SocialNetworkTheoryFoundations

An (over)-simplication of what they do is get employees to fill out some
forms that determine how strong the interaction is between them and
other employees, represent that interaction as a force (such as a
spring), throw the graph into a simulator not different from Springz and
see where they land.  Roles that end up in the center turn out to be the
most active roles.  From these diagrams they can then identify
organizational patterns.

Thought y'all might find this interesting since the Ruby community is no
stranger to patterns (design patterns and otherwise) in software
development.

Paul