Shaken and Stirred

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I streamed (while sipping a Watermelon Martini concoction I made up) Fast X – a movie with cars – ignoring the scathing review in Stream It Or Skip It: ‘Fast X’ on VOD, in Which Jason Momoa Makes a Floundering Franchise Even More Annoying:

Fast X is the first of, god help us, a planned three-film mega-finale for a series that wore all the tread off its tires about three movies ago.

Our Call: Out of gas. Spinning its tires. Stuck in the ditch. Slid too far off the road. Grinding its gears. Crashed and burning with one wheel spinning. Insert your automobile cliche here. SKIP IT.

Of course, I was super amused at the motivation for the initial heist sequence:

Tomorrow a next-gen quantum computer chip…

You know that quantum hype has now reached new heights and has reached the masses when it is weaved into a plot of a Vin Diesel movie.😏

Of course, when I think about cars and movies, James Bond rises to the surface. As Roger Moore writes in Bond on Bond:

James Bond’s car in Ian Fleming novels was a grey 1933 Bentley convertible, shown briefly during From Russia With Love. In Goldfinger Bond asks about his Bentley in Q-Branch, only to be told that it has ‘had its day’ and instead presented with an Aston Martin DB5 – perhaps the car most famously associated with the entire 007 series.

I dug into why this happened. Evidently, Ian Fleming received this letter from a reader, a member of the Aston Martin Club:

Have the decency to fix him up with a proper bit of decent machinery. The DB III Coupe is capable of a fair rate of knots and presumably could be fixed up for a bit of high-powered snoggling.

Fleming took the tip and put the car in his next novel, Goldfinger. The Importance of Being Responsive.😊

One of my favorite passages from On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (Chapter 2. Gran Turismo):

It was then, on a ten-mile straight cut through a forest, that it happened. Triple wind-horns screamed their banshee discord in his ear, and a low, white two-seater, a Lancia Flaminia Zagato Spyder with its hood down, tore past him, cut in cheekily across his bonnet and pulled away, the sexy boom of its twin exhausts echoing back from the border of trees. And it was a girl driving, a girl with a shocking pink scarf tied round her hair, leaving a brief pink tail the wind blew horizontal behind her.

If there was one thing that set James Bond really moving in life, with the exception of gun-play, it was being passed at speed by a pretty girl.

Of course, this from Casino Royale (Chapter 7. Rouge et Noir) when he changes his mind from having a Dry Martini and instead orders:

Just a moment. Three measures of Gordon’s, one of vodka, half a measure of Kina Lillet. Shake it very well until its ice-cold, then add a large thin slice of lemon-peel. Got it?

As you probably know, Kina Lillet was discontinued in 1986. These days it is usually replaced by Cocchi Americano (like at Alden and Harlow that I mentioned in Yesterday Once More/Top of the World).

And from Dr. No:

And I would like a medium vodka dry Martini – with a slice of lemon peel. Shaken and not stirred, please.

This brings me to Quantum Approximate Optimization Algorithm (QAOA). Essentially it has the following 7 steps (let us use Max-Cut as the example):

  1. Classical: Write down the objective function.
  2. Convert it to an Energy Hamiltonian.
  3. Initialize to an Equal Superposition State. (I think of it as Shaking.)
  4. Rotate the state based on the Hamiltonian. (This is Stirring.)
  5. Use the Mixing Hamiltonian. (Shake again.)
  6. Shake and Stir a few times.
  7. Measure and Evaluate. (This is Pouring and Savoring.)


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