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Old 04-21-2014, 10:23 AM   #21
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Is it wetter on water after a rain?
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Old 04-21-2014, 10:31 AM   #22
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Regarding the problem T-Al recounted that has a simple solution, I remember reading the following anecdote somewhere.

When this problem was posed to John von Neumann, he thought about it for a short time, then gave the correct answer. The asker then said that Neumann must have heard this problem before, and knew the trick.

Neumann replied "What's so tricky about computing the convergence limit of an infinite series?"

I did not know what to think of that. Was Neumann so good that he could compute the limit of the series in his head, or was he turning the table by pulling the leg of the asker?
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Old 04-21-2014, 12:45 PM   #23
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Hmmm. quick and very dirty approximation. 150 mi means 41.43 circumference trips to go from pole to equator. A latitude circumference is distance at equator * cos (lat) or in our case, the fraction (45/42)*n using degrees and rounding up the fraction trip. run 42 iterations with n from 1 to 42. double that.
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Old 04-21-2014, 04:08 PM   #24
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I think the "elegant solution" to the spiral distance problem is going to involve renting a plane and then writing an additional book about the adventure.
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Old 04-21-2014, 04:23 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TromboneAl View Post
I'm pretty sure I won't be able to write this book.

Yes, science fiction. Craft will be at 40,000 feet, and fuel won't be an issue......I was hoping for a similar elegant. solution to my problem.
The elegant solution is, this is fiction.......the solution is whatever you invent.
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Old 04-21-2014, 04:40 PM   #26
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How about this? The plane only travels 12500 miles. The plane lifts off and slowly moves south at constant speed of just over 6 miles per hour, letting the earth spin beneath it 83 times before it touches down at the south pole!

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Old 04-21-2014, 05:11 PM   #27
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Um, what altitude is the plane flying at?
... The greater the altiude the longer the distance, just sayin'
Yes, but considering the other approximations, the plane's altitude is a very minor consideration to the problem.

The diameter of the Earth is ~ 8,000 miles, a plane can fly (as I recall from a Byrd's song), eight miles high, so the diameter of its flight path would be 8016 miles. Circumference is Pi * Dia. So...

(3.14⋅8016)/(3.14⋅8000) = 1.002 (or you could factor out Pi first)

So only about 0.2% increase.

I recall this from the quiz about a rope that circles the Earth on the ground, and how much longer would it need to be if it way to be raised by 3 feet all around the entire Earth? It seems that would take so much extra rope, but it is less than 20 feet ( = 3.14 ⋅ 6 = 18.84).

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Old 04-21-2014, 05:33 PM   #28
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Is it wetter on water after a rain?
If you add a wetting agent, yes.
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Old 05-08-2014, 07:42 PM   #29
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And the answer is...

1,297,675.2 miles
Attached Files
File Type: xls SpiralEarthPathCalculation.xls (13.5 KB, 10 views)
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Old 05-08-2014, 07:53 PM   #30
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Why sweat it? If it's Science Fiction any number conjured out of thin air will do...
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Old 05-08-2014, 07:55 PM   #31
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Why sweat it? If it's Science Fiction any number conjured out of thin air will do...
I think you underestimate the nerds out there.
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Old 05-09-2014, 12:39 AM   #32
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I see that the number of iterations WAS 42!!!! Who woulda thunk it? KingB and Hitchhiker had it right!

Now, as any high schooler knows, round it to fudge the number.

1+ 1 = 3 for sufficiently large numbers of one.
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Old 05-09-2014, 08:13 AM   #33
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Maybe semi-interesting, but a very rough approximation comes pretty close (though, w/o the more detailed calc, I couldn't know that w/o some more advanced math to identify the trend and find the real average ):

Code:
Trips					
 0 – 21	 use the half-way point, 67.5 degrees	 9,557.0   21	200,697.0
 22 – 42 use the half-way point, 22.5 degrees	23,017.0   21	483,357.0
					                        684,054.0
					                      1,368,108.0
					
					                      1,297,675.2
		             Delta from T-Al's calc              5.43%
Edit/add: I see Devans0 gave an approach for estimating this in post #23.

Also, T-Al's I think misses something, he doubles 42 trips which would be 84 trips, not 83 (not sure how Devans0 came up with 82.86, but with that precision it must be right! ). So is that an extra equatorial trip? And the 12,500 miles from pole to pole is not insignificant (though that omission would somewhat offset the other added trip). It might make better sense to use the average degrees of the trip - 1.1 degrees and 3.24 for the first two entries?



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Old 05-09-2014, 11:37 AM   #34
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Spiral upward or downward? Ewww....motion sickness.
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Old 05-09-2014, 11:39 AM   #35
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Right. Close enough. Thanks for the confirmation.
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Old 05-23-2014, 05:58 PM   #36
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If anyone wants to see the final result (actually the first draft result) of this, you can view it here: http://pages.suddenlink.net/tripsite/SphereScenes.pdf

Feel free to give me any feedback. I'm early in the process of writing this book, and if I get comments at this stage, it might save me some work later. For the last part, that involved a naked Barbara Walters, I need to know if my wacky sense of humor is too much.

There are some f words in there.

Thanks,
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Old 05-23-2014, 06:53 PM   #37
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Random editorial comments:

cover page (no number)
-- As you don't indicate the time period in which this story is taking place (until the reference to Barbara Walter's age on page 5), using a phonograph as an example sounds like this story involves a group of Boomers or older. I'm not sure who your target audience is, but some people might find the phonograph reference a bit passe.

near the top of page 2:
"Seth pointed to Bogart Wake, and dropped the hammer on his finger pistol." -- Q: What does this sentence mean? And did you intend to say "pistol finger"?

near the top of page 5:
"Stephanie and I and the six patrons in the club sat close to the TV, and pretty much held our breaths." Perhaps consider using " ..and held our collective breath."

No comment/feedback on Barbara Walters.

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Old 05-23-2014, 07:30 PM   #38
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With even a hint of "a naked Barbara Walters", I'm out. Geez, I just got done eating, how 'bout a warning!


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Old 05-23-2014, 08:11 PM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by omni550 View Post
Random editorial comments:

cover page (no number)
-- As you don't indicate the time period in which this story is taking place (until the reference to Barbara Walter's age on page 5), using a phonograph as an example sounds like this story involves a group of Boomers or older. I'm not sure who your target audience is, but some people might find the phonograph reference a bit passe.

near the top of page 2:
"Seth pointed to Bogart Wake, and dropped the hammer on his finger pistol." -- Q: What does this sentence mean? And did you intend to say "pistol finger"?

near the top of page 5:
"Stephanie and I and the six patrons in the club sat close to the TV, and pretty much held our breaths." Perhaps consider using " ..and held our collective breath."

No comment/feedback on Barbara Walters.

omni
Thanks, Omni.

Yes, I guess I'll have to refer to a CD instead of a record.

OK, I'll fix or remove the finger pistol thing. It was supposed to be a geeky way of Seth tell the other guy to take the question, like miming shooting him with a pistol.
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Old 05-24-2014, 10:11 AM   #40
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I think the timeframe needs to be established early on. A CD might be outdated more than a DVD. A new 60 flatscreen sounds so 2006 to me. How about just having the image appear on their usual display. The pistol episode could be just "he simulated firing a pistol with his hand". How about Barbara Walters at 40 if she must be naked? Sure she was not on The View then but who cares?
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