Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Remembering Geometry

Between 1990 - 1994 I worked for the Canadian mining giant, Inco, in Sudbury, Ontario. I developed software for their 250+ mining engineers, geologists, and surveyors. My speciality was customizing the marvelous drafting program, AutoCad, using a programming language called AutoLisp.

Though the programming itself was nowhere near as sophisticated as what I do now, often the math & geometry was. One time I even had to use Calculus, something I don't think I've used since university or afterwards.

Well, as often happens in life, things have come full circle and once again I'm doing some AutoCad programming! This evening I had to figure out how to calculate the maximum height of a drift (tunnel) cross-section, no matter how it was oriented in space. This involved a quick Google search of the sine, cosine, and tangent geometry functions and soon after I had a solution!

Back to the Future, baby!

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