tinkertoys mapping

Mike Lieber (U28550@UICVM.BITNET)
Sat, 14 Jan 1995 18:17:45 CST

Danny's post on 3D modeling reminded me of a couple things, as did Micki Korp's
private post. Eric's example of multiple connections between the same two
people would probably result in a complex, but doable model. John McCreery's
suggestion of minimarshmellows with toothpicks would probably be more
space-efficient as these grow larger. I suspect that what you see in 3D would
be a 3D network.

Eileen Kane's account of how some Irish folks keep track of connections might
be helpful for keeping count on paper of the relations to be built with the
tinkertoys or the marshmellows. Instead of doing stuff like 2nd cousing once
removed, what Eileen's informants were doing was counting the generational
steps necessary to get to an apical sibling pair (from ego) and then back down
to the relative being connected. So when someone says, "She's 3 and 2 to me,"
that means going up 3 generations lineally to a great grandparent, laterally
to GGP's sibling, and then down two generations to the woman to whom the
connection is traced. You can color-code for gender for the TT wheel or the
marshmellow representing each generation. My point is that the Irish number
system is very handy for keeping count of what the connected elements have to
look like when you're done. Just for fun, you might try a pair of cousins who
are connected both through ego's father and through ego's mother and see what
your resulting figure looks like.
Mike Lieber