Eiron’s Archives 08

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1) Buildings wouldn’t need lifts [ elevators ]. There would be external doors on all floors of high buildings.

2) Mountaineering would be far less popular, although, ironically, jumping off mountains would be far more popular.

3) There would be all manner of abominable airborne combat-sports – aimed at disabling one’s ‘opponent’ in mid flight.

4) Electricity pylons and their associated high-tension cables would be illegal.

5) Estate agents would no longer use the word ‘secluded’.

6) Hospital casualty depeartments would be much busier ( especially after ‘closing time’ )

I do recommend Raj, that if your aviational leanings are of a serious nature, you should avail yourself of some of the many superb mechanical assistance devices which are on the market. Airbus and Boeing both manufacture very reliable versions, which are generally available on a very reasonable short-term rental basis through various brokers.

Dear Amber12tig

My editor probably won’t thank me for responding to your query due to its ‘non-technical’ nature. I believe, however, that we may contexturalise the intrinsic nature of sauce-making within the realms of science rather than art.

Some would countenance, perhaps, the possibility that the chef may bring his or her own ‘magic’ ( if that is no too fanciful a concept ) to their sauces – but I would like to brush away notions of ‘alchemy’ and invoke instead an ethos of instrumentality.

You see, a fine Bechamel or perhaps a Nuoc Cham is something that a great chef can make again and again without fault. ‘Reproducibility’ is, of course, a cornerstone of the ‘scientific method’ – you may perceive where I am headed with this line of thought . . .

Here is my recipe for Nepalese Sekuwa

100ml Nepalese yoghurt
5ml lime juice ( not lemon under any circumstances )
10ml mustard oil

2.4 cm. fresh ginger root
50ml onions, roughly chopped
10ml cumin seeds

12.5ml spring onions, cut in 2.4 cm. lengths
5ml coriander seeds
2.5ml turmeric powder

2.5ml peppercorns ( ideally Szechwan )
2 large cloves garlic ( if you can’t find Nepalese garlic, French will suffice )

5ml fresh dill (finely chopped)
50cmlcelery ( chopped)
5ml soy sauce ( tamari if poss. )

3 fresh red chillis ( med hot ) ( include seeds )

It never fails. I’ll leave it up to you to find the most comfortable and appropriate method of combining the ingredients – ( except – do not use an electric blender – that would obviously be a travesty )

[ Very amusing. No more recipes please. Ed. ]

Dear Naz0too

You enquired as to the RGB value for ‘pizza crust’. ( for the non-technical, RGB simply means the relative levels of Red Green Blue – in other words, the reader would like to know what colour pizza crust is )

I regret to have to inform you that there is no strict value I can provide. You see, pizza bases vary enormously depending on the dough and the degree of baking etc etc. What I can do, is give you a range of RGB values which, I find, in general, serve admirably.

The lighter parts of the crust will normally be around

RGB 240,234,194,

while the darkest may be perhaps

RGB 40,18,12. ( darker if burnt )

In the mid range we have

RGB 137,93,42.

I have attached a colour scale which I hope will assist.

Without wishing to jettison notions of intrinsic germaneness with regard to your query, I feel obliged to point out that any normal person would perhaps have asked –

1) Why you need to know.
2) Why you didn’t have look for yourself.

You will notice, I trust, that I have enquired of neither.

Dear Bonooboo

I detect a note of sarcasm in your question as to whether I can deduce, by scientific means, the winner of the imminent presidential election. The answer is, absolutely, yes, I can. It is determined by the following computational method.

Firstly we ‘feed’ our algorithm with the requisite factors. These factors could be, for example, some, any, all, and more, or not, of the following : ( in no particular order )

The level of disgruntlement of the population with the incumbent.

The possibilities ( or not ) for electoral fraud – ( a.k.a. vote rigging )

The fiscal solidity of the participants family background ( three retrospective generations should suffice )

The liquid sums available for PR related activities ( a.k.a. propaganda )

Etc etc etc

Each of the factors is then ‘weighted’ according to its current importance. ( In the past, we used to employ a ‘sigmoid ’ weighting curve, but now have moved over to a more sophisticated technique ; co-incidentally, and perhaps somewhat amusingly, called the ‘competing governors ’ method. )

The factors, and their relevant weightings, are then auto-crosslinked using a multiple-route positive and negative feedback network – a technique which we have called algorithmic rhizotaxis.

The programme is then left to run.

You may be interested to learn that the process does not require a gargantuan computer system – in fact, an ordinary desktop machine will complete the task in under two hours. This extraordinary efficiency is achieved by elegant software design rather than the more usual ‘brute force’ iterative approach.

The result, which I can guarantee with almost 100% accuracy, is that the winner will be . . .

The one from the ‘quasi-aristocratic’ family background who went to Yale and is a member of the Skull and Bones club.

If I am wrong ( which I won’t be ) I pledge that I will auction-off my entire collection of peruvian Aguaruna nicotine syringes – and donate the proceedings to a charity of your choice.

Update: Aaron’s tech-assisted hunch proved to be entirely correct, and therefore he won’t be auctioning his precious collection. Ed.

Dear SkataDude13

You enquired ; “So howcome ships for example cruise and tankers ships are made of iron howcome they can float ? ”.

The answer is perfectly straightforward. Forget all that buffoonery about ‘displacement’ and ‘density’ first put about by those narrow minded ancient Greeks. Iron ships float because they are full of air. If you were unfortunate enough to be accommodated in an iron ship filled with water – you would, I fear, soon be enjoying a fish supper with Amphitrite ( another ancient ███████ Greek ).

So that’s ‘ howcome ‘.

Dear inoxiDave

A few years ago, I was promenading with some friends at a riverside venue in central London. It so happened, that at one point on our sojourn, we passed by a very large stainless-steel sculpture – no doubt commissioned by the local council in a vain attempt to shake off their somewhat philistinic image. I ventured to enquire, of my colleague’s seven year old daughter, what she thought of the artwork. Her reply – without a moment’s hesitation – was “ It’s a waste of spoons ”. . .

And your self-made computer programme which you kindly sent to me is a “Waste of bytes”. 2.85 million of them in fact. While I find it admirable that you have managed to teach yourself C++ ( whatever that is ), I cannot – even by stretching my capacious imagination to its very limits – conceive of any reason why anyone would wish to catalogue their musical CD collection by filesize instead of by artist, title, or genre.

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