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  1. FlexGunship

    Senior Controls Engineer Interview Questions -- Suggestions Please

    I'm interviewing someone for a senior controls engineer position (this is the same position I hold now). I'm having a hard time coming up with technical questions that would separate him from a less experienced guy but can still be answered within the span of a short interview. I have all of...
  2. FlexGunship

    Number of ways to solve a problem

    Perhaps, the number of ways (n) to solve a problem can only be 0 or infinite.
  3. FlexGunship

    Taking responsibility

    What do you mean "follow up"? I take full responsibility for my choice to drive to work today.
  4. FlexGunship

    Taking responsibility

    You need to take responsibility for writing a crummy post. I take responsibility for my actions. That might be a counterpoint. In fact, I always do it. Sometimes I'm embarrassed, other times I'm proud, and still other times I'm forced to admit that, evidence suggests, I should've taken...
  5. FlexGunship

    Can dark matter skew Earth-based gravitational measurements?

    I think I'm good with this; makes sense. It's not quite intuitive. I guess this is because, now second-nature, image of mass accreting gravitationally includes the constant bumping of particles into each other leading to an averaging in their momentum over time. Is this also true of...
  6. FlexGunship

    Can dark matter skew Earth-based gravitational measurements?

    If gravity is the sole governing force, then why WOULDN'T it concentrate in areas where electromagnetically bonded gravitational bodies (i.e. the Earth, on a local scale) exist? There's nothing about the Earth that would tend to nudge it out of the way. Instead, you have the last 4.5 billion...
  7. FlexGunship

    Can dark matter skew Earth-based gravitational measurements?

    Yes, I did mean to convey that. I only meant that it interacts exclusively via gravity (i.e. not EM). Comprising ~85% of total matter (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dark_matter), you'd expect that dark matter would be the DOMINANT source of gravity. Although, this assumes that dark matter's...
  8. FlexGunship

    Can dark matter skew Earth-based gravitational measurements?

    I'll be cautious in asking my my question because I'm out of familiar territory. But... Given the following: that dark matter interacts with baryonic matter (exclusively?) via gravity, that evidence for dark matter shows that it exists largely near baryonic matter, and we are (almost?)...
  9. FlexGunship

    Verbatim: What Is a Photocopier?

    To be fair... we just call it a "copier". And being a relative youngster, the term "photocopy machine" seems to imply to me a machine capable of copying photos (which our copier is, decidedly, not).
  10. FlexGunship

    Nicotine Free Hiring Policies?

    Any private employer should be able to decide what qualifications the job their offering requires. In the same way that you cannot craft a law that forces someone to work for another person (i.e. slavery) you cannot craft a law that forces someone to hire another person. Any public employer...
  11. FlexGunship

    Change Font & Save $400 Million

    I happen to have worked in the printing business as an engineer for the last seven years (both offset and digital). There are four fundamental problems with the proposed solution: Most actual printing within the US government is done with offset. The economy of scale and pricing of ink is...
  12. FlexGunship

    Building a homemade crank generator, but no voltage on voltmeter?

    The rotating magnetic field must be perpendicular to the direction of your conductors. Unwind the spool and rewind it in two packs perpendicularly. Higher number of coils increases induced EMF. For the love of Pete, don't play with that rectifier. You don't want 110VAC exposed in this setup.
  13. FlexGunship

    The Sum of All the Natural Numbers

    So, this strikes me as representative of the discussion thus far. I read p39-40, and I'm okay with it. I don't know zeta function regularization, but I accept that everyone is getting -1/12 out of this particular operation, and that everyone acknowledges that this is famously unconvincing...
  14. FlexGunship

    The Sum of All the Natural Numbers

    FYI, I've been away for the last couple of days. I'm still looking at this. I'min way over my head, but it still makes for a fun intellectual challenge. My latest notebook scribbling seem to imply fundamentally different behaviors for infinite sums that have alternating signs and sums that...
  15. FlexGunship

    The Sum of All the Natural Numbers

    You can also bump it over farther (as you did): S_2+S_2 = (1-2+3-4+5-...) + (1-2+3-4+5-...) S_2+S_2 = (1-2+3-4+5-...) - (0-0+0-1+2-3+4-5+...) S_2+S_2 = (1-2+3-3+3-3+...) S_2+S_2 = 1-2+3(1-1+1-1+...) S_2+S_2 = 1-2+3(S_1) S_2+S_2 = 1-2+3(\dfrac{1}{2}) S_2+S_2 = -1+\dfrac{3}{2} S_2+S_2...
  16. FlexGunship

    The Sum of All the Natural Numbers

    Again, I'm not a mathematician, but I did the same calculation and it resolved consistently. I believe your error was incorrectly signing the series; I added placeholder zeros to show that you missed the correct offset initially and thereby changed the series: You wrote this: +(1 - 2 + 3 - 4 +...
  17. FlexGunship

    The Sum of All the Natural Numbers

    The fact these these techniques for "taming" a divergent series show up in physical (measurable) reality is convincing enough for me. Perhaps it's the type of thing you avoid in Algebra 1, but there's SOMETHING here. SOMETHING about this sum likes to be -\frac{1}{12} in mathematics and in...
  18. FlexGunship

    Life Goals You Aren't Willing To Work For

    I'm a little confused by the thread title... these are goals I'm NOT willing to work for? Well, here are two lists, I guess: Goals I AM working towards: Hike all of NH's 4000 footers Become a millionaire Become a "master" woodworker (love it, not great at it) Work for SpaceX Be an...
  19. FlexGunship

    Astounding: 1+2+3+4+5+ = [not infinity]

    \displaystyle\sum_{n=1}^{\infty}{n} = {-}\dfrac{1}{12} It seems that, regardless of intelligence, this proof (or sum, or proof of sum, or demonstration of sum) rattles some more than others. It is so astoundingly counter-intuitive that embracing it means really leaving your mathematical...
  20. FlexGunship

    Dog damaged neighbors car, want your input.

    I think this is just an expectation. When I had body work quoted all of my quotes assumed insurance would cover them and I never gave any insurance info. I'm sure your neighbor got it quoted, and the body shop assumed his insurance would cover it. This is just evidence that he didn't bother to...
  21. FlexGunship

    More Mars One nonsense

    Let's wait until they fail to cast judgement. I believe their proposed plan is to contract SpaceX for all of the launch technology. Yes, that should be fantastically expensive... but not inherently impossible. To be clear, I'm not saying it'll happen. I'm just saying I've got my fingers crossed.
  22. FlexGunship

    Law and salaries

    Eh... this is reasonable... but only applies to very small regions. What about when the abundant natural resource is intelligence or a good work ethic? (Bolding mine) These ideas make me cringe... the first thing that would happen if you gave everyone $10,000 is a surge in personal boat...
  23. FlexGunship

    Law and salaries

    I don't understand this part. I agree, though, no one should be diagnosed as "unable to work." Work is not just manual labor. Every person has some value they can contribute; in the case of the handicapped, there are social programs. Fortunately for you, there will always be industrious...
  24. FlexGunship

    Law and salaries

    There was a book about this... a pretty famous one, I believe... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atlas_Shrugged You can't vote to give value. Some people can create it. You can only trade value for value. Value taken against the will of it's creator, at the point of a gun, is theft.
  25. FlexGunship

    News Gay marriage nearly legalised in NZ

    I'm not gay either. <shrug>
  26. FlexGunship

    Excedrin extra strength vs excedrin migraine

    I've found the same thing with my No-Doz and Dunkin Donuts coffee. Shameful!
  27. FlexGunship

    Public Speaking tips

    Firstly, you don't bounce a yo-yo. So, definitely study up on those physics. Secondly, I was awful at public speaking, so I made a point to volunteer at every possible opportunity for it during college. This has turned out to be incredibly valuable; more so than much of my formal schooling...
  28. FlexGunship

    Pure silence.

    Repeated and prolonged exposure to extremely loud sounds has been shown to reduce the functionality of the ear's ability to hear. You could try that until you don't hear anything anymore.
  29. FlexGunship

    Law and salaries

    Pretty sure you just end up losing businesses in your country, that's all. Not because the business says "I'm not operating here, poo poo." But because the type of funds required to secure the leaders of an industry won't be available and that will ultimately lead to the company relocating or...
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