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Re: The parable of the falling droplet

by BrowserUk (Pope)
on Oct 21, 2002 at 01:12 UTC ( #206747=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

in reply to The parable of the falling droplet

Nice one, but... I'm not sure it passes the internationalisation test (yes, I know there's a short-form, but I can never remember the damn thing).

If our brave raindrop was an Australian (or any other southern hemisphere) raindrop, does it still hold true. I seem to remember that their water flows the opposite way to ours...or is that only in annular orifices whence the annular orifice outflow retardation devices have been removed?

I attempted, as is my usual practice, to benchmark this enlightening discovery, but in the absence of the wherewithal to adaquately model this, I attempted a little empirical evaluation.

After much discussion and heated argument (me and myself couldn't agree, so I cast my deciding vote), a cocktail stick was adjudged to be an acceptable substitute for a toothpick. A piece of bluetac (an indispensible part of the Benchmark Monk's armoury) was retrieved from behind a lower corner of my i386 op-code, cpu-cycle chart and pressed (sic) into service.

The third pre-requisite for the experiment was supplied (in abundance) by the oh-so-obliging, British weather.

After careful statistical analysis of various fonts at a randomised selection of point-sizes, screen resolutions, and on a representative selection of physical hardware (ie. my screen), the appropriate angle of declination was determined to be 60°29'13".

Unfortunately, despite the abundance of brave raindrops, various factors served to interfere with the outcome of the experiment.

Even after numerous attempts to direct the brave raindrops to the required location, it was a frustratingly small sample of the above said abundance that obliged by landing in the requisite zone of evaluation.

Even on those occasions when they could be pursuaded to commit their final acts as raindrops within said zone, they were observed to have an annoying alacrity for taking unauthorised shortcuts around the impeding oral debris removal device (substitute) in their hurry to join the massed ranks of nearby water bodies.**

Also noted was that the testers occular resolution enhancement devices (see 'specs') proved to be an irresistable draw to a disproportionate number of the raindrops under test which rendered observational data unreliable.

Further testing has been suspended until more conrolled test conditions can be devised and implemented.

** It was also observed to be impossible to distinguish which of the nearby water bodies now contained the aforesaid semi-obligant former-raindrops, so re-instruction and re-testing was impractical!

Cor! Like yer ring! ... HALO dammit! ... 'Ave it yer way! Hal-lo, Mister la-de-da. ... Like yer ring!

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OT: Re: Re: The parable of the falling droplet
by thraxil (Prior) on Oct 21, 2002 at 01:56 UTC
    If our brave raindrop was an Australian (or any other southern hemisphere) raindrop, does it still hold true. I seem to remember that their water flows the opposite way to ours...

    if you're referring to the Coriolis effect -- and it sounds like you are -- the physicist in me feels the need to clear some things up.

    you often hear people claiming that bathtubs in the northern hemisphere drain clockwise while bathtups in the southern hemisphere drain counter-clockwise because of the Coriolis effect.

    the truth is that while the coriolis effect does exist and can have a significant impact on things like meteorology, its magnitude is far too small to have any practical effect over an area as small as a bathtub. the direction that the water spins as it drains is going to be dominated by the shape of the tub and any residual currents in the water. as a homework assignment for a physics class, i remember having to calculate the maximum residual current that the coriolis effect could overcome for a perfectly smooth, symetric, round bathtub. it was somewhere on the order of one rotation per year.

    but of course, everyone knows that the earth is really flat and on the back of a giant turtle, so the whole thing must just be a myth anyway. <grin />

    anders pearson

      Actually, I was referring to the fact that Aussie raindrops fall up:^) Relatively speaking.

      Cor! Like yer ring! ... HALO dammit! ... 'Ave it yer way! Hal-lo, Mister la-de-da. ... Like yer ring!

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