Irrational Tiling by Logical Quantifiers

Alvy Ray Smith

LICS Cover 1988-2013* - 24 Years!

Irrational Tiling

1988, Alvy Ray Smith, All Rights Reserved.

 Tile Details

Because of the success of the FOCS (Foundations of Computer Science) cover design, I was asked to design, in 1988, a cover for the first proceedings of a daughter conference, the LICS (Logic in Computer Science) symposium. At the time I was teaching myself PostScript and also reading the marvelous text Tilings and Patterns by Grunbaum and Shephard who describe an aperiodic tiling of the plane discovered by Penrose. As a tribute to the logicians who would attend LICS, I patterned the Penrose "kite and dart" tiles, used for the aperiodic tiling, with the universal quantifier symbol, an upside-down uppercase A. It is well-known that the irrational numbers have aperiodic decimal expansions, so I was tickled by the juxtaposition of the "irrational", or aperiodic tiling, with the logical [the very epitome of rational] symbol. The cover has been used annually since then* under the same arrangement as for the FOCS design, a free copy of the proceedings. Counting LICS 2013 then, the cover has now been in use 24 years.

Created at Pixar in Marin County, California in 1988.


*with the exception of 1989 and 2010. Not used since 2014.