Thursday, September 26, 2013

Jose Pepe Mujica,President of Uruguay in UN Speech with English Translat...

Jose 'Pepe" Mujica,Discurso Completo, ONU 2013

Sunday, September 15, 2013

10 Secret Trig Functions Your Math Teachers Never Taught You | Roots of Unity, Scientific American Blog Network

10 Secret Trig Functions Your Math Teachers Never Taught You | Roots of Unity, Scientific American Blog Network

Mathematics: learning it, doing it, celebrating it.
Roots of Unity Home

10 Secret Trig Functions Your Math Teachers Never Taught You

On Monday, the Onion reported that the “Nation’s math teachers introduce 27 new trig functions.” It’s a funny read. The gamsin, negtan, and cosvnx from the Onion article are fictional, but the piece has a kernel of truth: there are 10 secret trig functions you’ve never heard of, and they have delightful names like “haversine” and “exsecant.”
A diagram with a unit circle and more trig functions than you can shake a stick at. (It's well known that you can shake a stick at a maximum of 8 trig functions.) The familiar sine, cosine, and tangent are in blue, red, and, well, tan, respectively. The versine is in green next to the cosine, and the exsecant is in pink to the right of the versine. Excosecant and coversine are also in the image. Not pictured: vercosine, covercosine, and haver-anything. Image: Tttrung and Steven G. Johnson, via Wikimedia Commons.
Whether you want to torture students with them or drop them into conversation to make yourself sound erudite and/or insufferable, here are the definitions of all the “lost trig functions” I found in my exhaustive research of original historical textsWikipedia told me about.
Versine: versin(θ)=1-cos(θ)
Vercosine: vercosin(θ)=1+cos(θ)
Coversine: coversin(θ)=1-sin(θ)
Covercosine: covercosine(θ)=1+sin(θ)
Haversine: haversin(θ)=versin(θ)/2
Havercosine: havercosin(θ)=vercosin(θ)/2
Hacoversine: hacoversin(θ)=coversin(θ)/2
Hacovercosine: hacovercosin(θ)=covercosin(θ)/2
Exsecant: exsec(θ)=sec(θ)-1
Excosecant: excsc(θ)=csc(θ)-1
I must admit I was a bit disappointed when I looked these up. They’re all just simple combinations of dear old sine and cosine. Why did they even get names?! From a time and place where I can sit on my couch and find the sine of any angle correct to 100 decimal places nearly instantaneously using an online calculator, the versine is unnecessary. But these seemingly superfluous functions filled needs in a pre-calculator world.
Numberphile recently posted a video about Log Tables, which explains how people used logarithms to multiply big numbers in the dark pre-calculator days. First, a refresher on logarithms. The equation logbx=y means that by=x. For example, 102=100 so log10100=2. One handy fact about logarithms is that logb(c×d)=logbc+logbd. In other words, logarithms make multiplication into addition. If you wanted to multiply two numbers together using a log table, you would look up the logarithm of  both numbers and then add the logarithms together. Then you’d use your log table to find out which number had that logarithm, and that was your answer. It sounds cumbersome now, but doing multiplication by hand requires a lot more operations than addition does. When each operation takes a nontrivial amount of time (and is prone to a nontrivial amount of error), a procedure that lets you convert multiplication into addition is a real time-saver, and it can help increase accuracy.
The secret trig functions, like logarithms, made computations easier. Versine and haversine were used the most often. Near the angle θ=0, cos(θ) is very close to 1. If you were doing a computation that had 1-cos(θ) in it, your computation might be ruined if your cosine table didn’t have enough significant figures. To illustrate, the cosine of 5 degrees is 0.996194698, and the cosine of 1 degree is 0.999847695. The difference cos(1°)-cos(5°) is 0.003652997. If you had three significant figures in your cosine table, you would only get 1 significant figure of precision in your answer, due to the leading zeroes in the difference. And a table with only three significant figures of precision would not be able to distinguish between 0 degree and 1 degree angles. In many cases, this wouldn’t matter, but it could be a problem if the errors built up over the course of a computation.
The bonus trig functions also have the advantage that they are never negative. Versine ranges between 0 and 2, so if you are using log tables to multiply with a versine, you don’t have to worry about the fact that the logarithm is not defined for negative numbers. (It is not defined for 0 either, but that is an easy case to deal with.) Another advantage to the versine and haversine is that they can keep you from having to square something. A little bit of trigonometric wizardry (a.k.a. memorization of one of the endless list of trig formulas you learned in high school) shows that 1-cos(θ)=2sin2(θ/2). So the haversine is just sin2(θ/2). Likewise, the havercosine is cos2(θ/2). If you have a computation involving the square of sine or cosine, you can use a haversine or havercosine table and not have to square or take square roots.
A diagram showing the sine, cosine, and versine of an angle. Image: Qef and Steven G. Johnson, via Wikimedia Commons.
The versine is a fairly obvious trig function to define and seems to have been used as far back as 400 CE in India. But the haversine may have been more important in more recent history, when it was used in navigation. The haversine formula is a very accurate way of computing distances between two points on the surface of a sphere using the latitude and longitude of the two points. The haversine formula is a re-formulation of the spherical law of cosines, but the formulation in terms of haversines is more useful for small angles and distances. (On the other hand, the haversine formula does not do a very good job with angles that are close to 90 degrees, but the spherical law of cosines handles those well.) The haversine formula could yield accurate results without requiring the computationally expensive operations of squares and square roots. As recently as 1984, the amateur astronomy magazine Sky & Telescope was singing the praises of the haversine formula, which is not only useful for terrestrial navigation but also for celestial calculations. For more on the haversine formula and computing distances on a sphere, check out this archived copy of a census bureau page or this Ask Dr. Math article.
I don’t have much information about the history of the other trig functions on the list. All of them could make computations more accurate near certain angles, but I don’t know which ones were commonly used and which ones were named* analogously to other functions but rarely actually used. I’m curious about this, if anyone knows more about the subject.
When the Onion imitates real life, it’s usually tragic. But in the case of secret trig functions, the kernel of truth in the Onion didn’t make me sad. We’re very lucky now that we can multiply, square, and take square roots so easily, and our calculators can store precise information about the sines, cosines, and tangents of angles, but before we could do that, we figured out a work-around in the form of a ridiculous number of trig functions. It’s easy forget that the people who defined them were not sadistic math teachers who want people to memorize weird functions for no reason. These functions actually made computations quicker and less error-prone. Now that computers are so powerful, the haversine has gone the way of the floppy disc. But I think we can all agree that it should come back, if only for the “awesome” joke I came up with as I was falling asleep last night: Haversine? I don’t even know ‘er!
*I’d like to take a little digression to the world of mathematical prefixes here, but it might not be for everyone. You’ve been warned.
In the table of secret trig functions, “ha” clearly means half; the value of haversine is half of the value of versine, for example. “Co” means taking the same function but with the complementary angle. (Complementary angles add up to 90 degrees. In a right triangle, the two non-right angles are complementary.) For instance, the cosine of an angle is also the sine of the complementary angle. Likewise, the coversine is the versine of the complementary angle, as you can see in light blue above one of the red sines in the diagram at the top of the post.
The one bonus trig function that confuses me a little bit is the vercosine. If the “co” in that definition meant the complementary angle, then vercosine would be the same as coversine, which it isn’t. Instead, the vercosine is the versine of the supplementary angle (supplementary angles add up to 180 degrees), not the complementary one. In addition to the definitions as 1-cos(θ) and 1+cos(θ), the versine and vercosine can be defined as versin(θ)=2sin2(θ/2) and vercos(θ)=2cos2(θ/2). In the case of versine, I believe the definition involving cos(θ) is older than the definition involving sine squared. My guess is that vercosine was a later term, an analogy of the square of sine definition of versine using cosine instead. If you’re a trigonometry history buff and you have more information, please let me know! In any case, the table of super-secret bonus trig functions is a fun exercise in figuring out what prefixes mean.
Evelyn LambAbout the Author: Evelyn Lamb is a postdoc at the University of Utah. She writes about mathematics and other cool stuff. Follow on Twitter @evelynjlamb.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Israel 2013 Eyal Golan

On the bus last night, sitting near Sara across the isle from Baruch and surrounded by our beloved Jewish brothers and sisters from Judea and Samaria, the heartland of Eretz Yisrael, I decided to share some happy inspiring song for all to enjoy. There came our my Android, and soon the bus was rocking with this song!:
from my achoti: Bat Zion Susskind-Sacks

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Must read:

Declaration of Independence
view a larger image of the Declaration of Independenceyou are heredownload high-resolution images of the Declaration of Independencemore Declaration of Independence resources
Printer-Friendly Version
The Declaration of Independence: A Transcription

IN CONGRESS, July 4, 1776.
The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America,
When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.--That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, --That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.--Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.
He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.
He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.
He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.
He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.
He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the Legislative powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.
He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.
He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary powers.
He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance.
He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.
He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.
He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:
For Quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:
For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:
For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:
For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury:
For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences
For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies:
For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:
For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.
He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.
He has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.
He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.
He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.
He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.
In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.
Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our Brittish brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.
We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

The 56 signatures on the Declaration appear in the positions indicated:
Column 1
   Button Gwinnett
   Lyman Hall
   George Walton
Column 2
North Carolina:
   William Hooper
   Joseph Hewes
   John Penn
South Carolina:
   Edward Rutledge
   Thomas Heyward, Jr.
   Thomas Lynch, Jr.
   Arthur Middleton
Column 3
John Hancock
Samuel Chase
William Paca
Thomas Stone
Charles Carroll of Carrollton
George Wythe
Richard Henry Lee
Thomas Jefferson
Benjamin Harrison
Thomas Nelson, Jr.
Francis Lightfoot Lee
Carter Braxton
Column 4
   Robert Morris
   Benjamin Rush
   Benjamin Franklin
   John Morton
   George Clymer
   James Smith
   George Taylor
   James Wilson
   George Ross
   Caesar Rodney
   George Read
   Thomas McKean
Column 5
New York:
   William Floyd
   Philip Livingston
   Francis Lewis
   Lewis Morris
New Jersey:
   Richard Stockton
   John Witherspoon
   Francis Hopkinson
   John Hart
   Abraham Clark
Column 6
New Hampshire:
   Josiah Bartlett
   William Whipple
   Samuel Adams
   John Adams
   Robert Treat Paine
   Elbridge Gerry
Rhode Island:
   Stephen Hopkins
   William Ellery
   Roger Sherman
   Samuel Huntington
   William Williams
   Oliver Wolcott
New Hampshire:
   Matthew Thornton

Paco de Lucia - Entre dos Aguas

Here you are some of the Mediterranean sea. I guess you know where it comes from. Paco de Lucia was born in Algeciras, in the Giblaltar´s Strait, where the Atlantic and Mediterranean sea join and the distance between Africa and Europe is only 8 miles.

Tarifa town merge over the wind, mecca of surfing at Bolonia´s beaches. Involve there.

Aquí tienes algo del Mediterráneo. Supongo que sabes de dónde viene ésto. Paco de Lucía nació en Algeciras, en el Estrecho de Gibraltar, donde se unen las aguas del Atlántico y Mediterráneo, y donde la separación entre África y Europa es de sólo 14 km. Aquello es un lugar especial, en Tarifa, la meca del surf, en las Playas de Bolonia.Más poético no puede ser el lugar. Así se respira allí.