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Books I've recently acquired...

Books I've recently acquired...

Books I've recently acquired...

"Rising Tide" by John Berry
"Dams and Other Disasters" by Arthur Morgen
"History of Strength of Materials" by Stephen Timoshenko

RE: Books I've recently acquired...


Well, it's on order, I assume that counts

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

Radio Engineering by Frederick Terman, 1st Edition 1935.

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

My best old book is "Ship Form, Resistance, and Screw Propulsion" by Baker, written just after WW1 based on all the work that had been done at the Froude testing tank. Readable and interesting (given that I'm into battleships).


Greg Locock

Please see FAQ731-376 for tips on how to make the best use of Eng-Tips.

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

Just received a box of books from recently retired engineer and low and behold if the all the books had my name on the fly.  These books had disappeared over a period of few years when I was working with in the same group with him.  No note of thanks or explanation.  The problem is that the majority were quite expensive to replace.

For GregLocock

Here are three sites that you probably have.  My interest was the dud torpedoes in the early part of the war.  We had a neighbor who was a navy chief and torpedoman when all the problems were unfolding.  He had a lot tales about the bureaucracy and nobody listening.   Nothing changes.   
My boss when I was a co-op was an expert in the metallurgical aspects of armor and had worked both for the Army and Navy during WWII.  
My father worked on all the shafts for the American Battleships built during the runup and during WWII. He ran the press that put bushings on the shafts.
The Battleship Alabama in Mobile,Al. took on a list during Katrina.  There were quite a few people on her during the storm but haven't heard any stories.




RE: Books I've recently acquired...

unclesyd & GregLocock - I have a "present" for you. An article on the WWII torpedo problem from an out-of-print issue of American Heritage Invention & Technology. Have scanned, .pdf(ed), and upload a 1.4 MB zipped file to this link

Right click the mouse and select "Save Target As..." to download to your hard drive. Then unzip as usual.


RE: Books I've recently acquired...

Thanks for that. The development of torpedoes is a fascinating one, to my mind.


Greg Locock

Please see FAQ731-376 for tips on how to make the best use of Eng-Tips.

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

Have looked at it yet as my Winzip.exe has disappeared from the hard drive. I'll have to get another installed.

Thanks also. Anything I read about the problem conjures up memories of discussions I had with our neighbor.  Nearly everything I read or see on TV about the problem makes his recollections much more relevant and to the point.  Just wish that I had a tape recorder in those days.

RE: Books I've recently acquired...


It's frustrating when your personal books go missing isn't it. I write my name in permanent marker down the open side of the book (opposite side from the spine - not sure of the proper name). The only way to remove it is to sand or plane it off. An old colleague used to do the same, but included the words 'stolen from' and his name. It is a shame to vandalise books, but I find mine either come back themselves now, or at worst it is easy to identify my property lying on the desks and shelves of the lightfingered.


One day my ship will come in.
But with my luck, I'll be at the airport!

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

UncleSyd, ScottyUK

I too have bought books over the years to help in my job. When folks have asked to borrow them I always used to say 'Ok no problem as long as you return it'. One day I caught someone photo-copying pages from one of my books. I went ballistic, I spend good money on a book and some b...d makes permanent copies for free.

That really ticks me off!

After that I took my books home and only brought them in to work as I needed them. Sometimes its a bit inconvenient when I need them and they are at home but it helps me keep my cool.

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

Well, I guess some of us have bigger problems.


Greg Locock

Please see FAQ731-376 for tips on how to make the best use of Eng-Tips.

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

< One day I caught someone photo-copying pages from one of my books. I went ballistic, I spend good money on a book and some b...d makes permanent copies for free.

That really ticks me off!>

I bet it ticks the author & publisher off even more...

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

I just got "The Weapon Shops of Isher" by A. E. Van Vogt.

Dude, turn the guy in to the bean-counters for wasting paper (and time and electricty and toner and wear-and-tear on the copier) if he spends the several hours copying a 500-page book! And if he takes the book to a discount (five cents per page) copy center, he's just spent $25 + a few hours when he could've spent the $100 or whatever and gotten a better copy and more value for his time. (Shoot, Blodget's books only cost $10 apiece!)

I make copies of tables, examples, figures, etc. out of my and my office's and my coworker's books all the time; if it fits in my design calcs, then that's the right way to do things! I also write - in ink - corrections to author's mistakes, code updates or other notes in older (but good-er) books (e.g, Teng, 1962) - but only if the book belongs to me personally or it's the office copy. That's also the right thing to do.

Frankly, I resent it most when I've thrown down my $80 for a new book and I find spelling errors, computational errors, missing figures, a missing sentence/paragraph (AISC ASD 9th - bearing stress - I didn't have the errata for years!) inadequate indicies and appendicies, and worst of all, if the book is nothing more than a compilation of references to other works!

When it comes to lending books, only get steamed if the lendee decides to put your book on his shelf. And ALWAYS put your name prominentley, premenently on the inside cover.

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

<I just got "The Weapon Shops of Isher" by A. E. Van Vogt.>

I think there's a 2nd book "The Weapons Makers of Isher" though that may just be the UK title.

I've certainly got two Weapon shop paperbacks.

How about "The Oscillaton Valve. The Elementary Principles of its Application to Wireless Telegraphy" by R D Bangay, 1920.

And "Induction coils: How to Make them, use them & repair them" by H.S. Norrie, 1909.

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

I recently read "Blind Trust," an expose' on the conspiracy of complaceny in the airline business. Deregulation was a bad decision in 1982. We have had airline mismanagement, many accidents directly connected to dereg, FAA complacency, and other horrors in the airline business.

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

Interesting, but erroneous conclusions.  Mismanagement cannot be prevented by regulation.  FAA complacency cannot be prevented by regulation.

Boeing lost 4 DC-10's in a span of about 3 yrs, prior to deregulation.  At least two of them were due to poor maintenance and subversion of required maintenance.

Stupid people are as stupid people do.  


RE: Books I've recently acquired...

<Boeing lost 4 DC-10's >


RE: Books I've recently acquired...

Sorry, I get confused with who di what to whom sometimes...


RE: Books I've recently acquired...

They never clarified why the rear baggage doors could not be easily secured. When the DC-10 first flew, there was whispering in the business about the rear engine wagging the tail. I flew in the rear of several DC-10's and experienced about 2/sec vibes.

Now when you look at the rear fuselage with the periodic torsional load imposed on top of the tail cone, then you can see that panel elements are being periodically sheared in both directions. The shears travel around the fuselage. Unlike a wing pylon that is tied into the wing spars, the DC-10 tail "pylon" is mounted into the flexible tail cone. There must have been permanent deformations because baggage handlers had trouble closing and locking the door.

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

How very reassuring... not.

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

As you may recall, one DC-10 crashed because the failed rear turbine sliced through the one spot on the plane that did not have redundant hydraulic lines.  

It was a basic flaw in the design; nothing to do with deregulation.


RE: Books I've recently acquired...

It's your basic "life's a bitch & then you die" thing really.

Can't remember if it was the DC10 that had the fan failure due to an inclusion.

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

I have standing instructions with my travel agent never to seat me near the engines.  I hear things that I just don't want to hear.  Better off just not knowing.  I had just completed an intensive Gas Turbine engineer training course in upstate NY, and took an Allegheny Airlines flight seated between the engines in the rear.  I said 'never again.'

Then there was the case of the passenger who was killed in Pensacola or Panama City (one of those "P" cities) a few years ago when the engine compressor shelled itself and a blade penetrated the cabin and killed a passenger seated alongside the engine in the last row.  (It was a model that had the engines mounted on the side of the plane at the rear.)

My business partner and I flew back from Los Angeles just today and had this very discussion.  (Engines were OK on this trip.)


RE: Books I've recently acquired...

About 10 years ago I read a book called, I think "DC 10"

From memory the cargo door problem started with the design being rushed into manufacture to meet the competition from the 747. The locking mechanism was difficult to engage properly, the "door locked" sensor was near the locking drive motor, and the linkage was flexible enough that the sensor could be actuated when the lock was not engaged. A series of quick fixes including a small inspection window requiring the baggage handler to use a flashlight while bending forward on hands and knees did not prevent further disasters.

The structure may have been weak, but the doors weren't locked.


RE: Books I've recently acquired...

Wasn't the real killer that the floor collapsed when the door opened & took out all the control lines to the tail?

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

It was one of the long string of failures that led to disaster:
engine wagging the tail...shear deformation....door failure...floor failure...control failure...etc

In failure analysis it is the root cause that sometimes is elusive. In this case it was the wagging engine in a flexible tail cone. Perhaps others can speak of deeper roots.

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

I had the experience of riding in a Delta DC-9 many years ago on a trip to Boston. We had just taken off from Wash, DC, and I heard a rather loud vibe from the left engine. I was sitting near the rear. Apparently the pilots had indications of something going on with that engine. They kept cycling the engine up and down, and at low speed you could hear "clunk -clunk-clunk." They shut it down. That was the first time I experienced single engine operation in a DC-9. The crew didn't say a word, and I didn't ask.

As we taxied to the terminal I turned to my neighbor and said "Not bad for a single engine flight." He was not aware of the left engine problem.

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

   My latest technical book is Product Design for Manufacture and Assembly, Second Edition, Geoffrey Boothroyd, Peter Dewhurst and Winston Knight.  Our manufacturing department is starting to get interested in DFMA.  This is a good read if you are a designer.

   There is nothing in it about DCs and engine failures.


RE: Books I've recently acquired...

"Hydraulics" by Daughtery  

I think its out of print, but its a classic.

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

Real wimpy book by you guys' standards.

Green Belt 6 Sigma
Black Belt 6 Sigma
Lean 6 Sigma

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

Da Vinci Code. Engineers need to be more well rounded!lol

"Do not worry about your problems with mathematics, I assure you mine are far greater."   
Albert Einstein
Have you read FAQ731-376 to make the best use of Eng-Tips Forums?

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

Da Vinci Code is good for managers, in my opinion. If kindergarten kids don't raise their voice over the fundamental change, Dan Brown has enough analytical skills to convince us that G = S, O = E and D = X. Though I don't belong to either of the two faiths, I will never buy his idea.

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

"Design Fundamentals of Cable Roof Structures" by Scalzi, Podolny and Teng. Published by US Steel in 1969. Nine bucks at a used book store.

"Pilgrim's Progress" by John Bunyan

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

"Signor Marconi's Magic Box": all about Marconi's Wireless exploits.

"Crystal Fire: The Birth of the Information Age": all about the development of the semiconductor industry from the cat's whisker through the point contact diode through the point contact transistor to the junction transistor & the ic. Interesting chap to work for, Mr Schockley... clown

"A Vertical Empire: The History of the UK Rocket and Space Programme, 1950-1971". by C.N. Hill. Who but the British could design a steam driven satellite launch vehicle? (OK, it was hydrogen peroxide & kerosene, but steam sounds better). Lions led by donkeys as per normal.

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

Forgot this one: "Colossus": yet another book about the Ultra Secret...

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

re: DaVinci Code, why not?  

People LOVE to speculate about conspiracies:
Area 51
Cold War
National Treasure
Flight 800


RE: Books I've recently acquired...

"Dark Sun: the making of the Hydrogen Bomb".

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

"the making of the atomic bomb."

Curiously, it produced a sense of pride in the engineering of the "gadget." It solved the problem of how to bring the war to a quick conclusion.

I lost an uncle in Okinawa, and I am chagrined about the popularity of Japanese cars. I wouldn't accept one as a gift. One associate was brainwashed about his new Honda, and I asked him to truthfully report on any problems in this "problem-free" car. Sure enough, he had a breakdown on the highway, and they came to tow it away. "They didn't charge for towing, and they provided a loaner during the repair." Very consoling!

Incidentally, during a tour of Oak Ridge, TN, I talked to a  local at a shopping center, and he gave some insights about living and working there during the war. He said that when certain individuals learned what they were really working on, they ran for the hills. They really got spooked. I had a later job offer to work down there, and somehow I couldn't get too excited about it.

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

I worked with a chap who was a POW in Nagasaki in August 1945. He survived the Big Flash... don't have any details of why & how.

When the factory I worked in had Japanese visitors, management had to hide him away... they weren't his favourite people.

What interested me about Dark Sun was the description of the first US device, which was an enormous cryogenic assembly full of  liquid deuterium. Worked though... bit undeliverable as built clown

And the first dry shot (Mike?) which ran away to 15Mt & scared the crap out of everyone because of an unexpected reaction with Lithium 6 (?).

As someone said, physicists have known sin...

The engineering of these things must have been very challenging & great fun so long as you didn't think about what they could do to the planet...

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

"The E-bomb: How America's New Directed Energy Weapons Will Change the Way Future Wars Will Be Fought"
by Doug Beason
It was given to me as a gift.  A great read and a good history of the development of directed energy weapons.  I work in Albuquerque and have meet some of the people mentioned in the book so I know it is factual.  I can only add: if this stuff is unclassified, imagine what we have that is still classified.


RE: Books I've recently acquired...

Is there any internet site (like sliderule era.net)where old books on electrical engineering (esp on Transformers )are posted.Any online sites where these can be purchased.

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

             I'm reading "The Hunt for Red October" novel by Tom Clancy (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Hunt_for_Red_October).

             Since I'm reading the Italian version of the book, many doubts and questions raise about technical translation (mainly due - I believe - to the fact that the novel and the relevant translation date back to the middle of the 80's, when many words related to Electronics and Computers had not come into common use yet...).

             About this matter, please take also a look at thread408-161877 within this site...       winky smile

Live Long and Prosper,           'NGL  

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

My current reading material is "One Forteenth Of An Elephant" by Ian Denys Peek. It is one man's story of his time as a PoW building the Burma Railway during WW2. The intervening sixty years have neither dulled his memory nor tempered his feelings. His account is captivating.

  I don't suffer from insanity. I enjoy it...

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

I recently re-read a book that I had read in high school called "Under the Red Sea Sun" by Cmdr Daniel Elsworth.  A true account of a retired US Navy salvage expert called back to service after we were attacked at Pearl Harbor, but not sent to Pearl because of his age.  Sent instead to a captured Italian naval base in Eritrea it is an interesting story of making do with what was on hand.  The Italians had attempted to sabotage the base and sank several dry docks and ships at strategic points to deny the use to the allies.

His story would be of interest to any engineer, as some of the things that he did were quite inventive.  One example I remember was that the Italians had figured that without motors the machine tools would be worthless, but they made the mistake of smashing the shaft end of some motors (I pictured old U-frame types with cast iron frames) and the opposite ends of others so that he could reassemble complete motors from the results and operate the machine shop.

He gets a little whiny about the bureaucracy that he had to deal with, but war is hell.

I especially enjoyed re-reading it after having had more than 30 years of engineering experience, picking up on a lot of things that made no sense to me as a high school student.

I recommend it.


PS: and by the way, I am still looking for a copy of another book that I read about the same time in high school called "Escape or die".  It was a collection of stories about people who had had a variety of escape adventures during WWII.

RE: Books I've recently acquired...


Thanks for the link.  Neither of the books shown were what I am looking for.  The book I am seeking would have to have been published prior to the 1960's and it was in hardback.  I doubt it ever made it any farther than that.

I'll keep checking back with this site from time to time to see if it shows up.  I did find a copy of the "Under the Red Sea Sun" to buy and did.


RE: Books I've recently acquired...

I have an autographed copy of this book, which I have read several times. I had the pleasure of meeting several people who were there.
You might like to checkout this site.


RE: Books I've recently acquired...


So I butchered his name and rank a little.  I didn't realize he had made Admiral.

I enjoyed the website and read quite a few of his letters from the period.

Now that I know that there is a biography I am going to try to get my hands on a copy.

What a remarkable man.  Good reading for any engineer who has any "hands on experience".  I enjoyed the book as a 16 year old, and again as a 56 year old (about the age I was when I read it again.)  I think some of the 'can do' attitude I saw in his example mentored me for my professional career.

Thanks for the link.


RE: Books I've recently acquired...

Here is another of the Naval Offices who came from the same era, Samuel B. "Swede" Momsen. The people that I mentioned above also worked or were acquainted with Swede.

This is the era that produced the majority of the leader ship for WWII and forced a lot of them excel in their fields.   

Again one of the aforementioned acquaintances was working on book about people who like Ellsberg and Momsen had excelled in their field during this period. Unfortunately he was killed in a car accident while traveling to interview one of his characters.

A pretty good bio.

There are two interesting books listed at the end of the bio.

The history of the two submarines, Squalus and Sculpin, involved in these books is very interesting.

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

I haven't clicked into the links yet, but I seem to remember Momsen in regards to deep sea breathing apparatus.  I seem to remember Ellsberg mentioning Momsen in his book.

I have read a lot of books about men from that generation and I don't know, but I think they lost the mold they used to make that breed.

On the other hand, do you think the old geezers in about 60 years will be saying the same thing about Bill Gates, Steve Jobs.  What pioneers working with those early stage computers, etc?

Another book that I recently read that I highly recommend, and that has characters that I don't think we will ever duplicate again is a book called "Blind Man's Bluff" by (I'll have to think-but anyone can Google that title and find out.)

What the main character spook (John Craven) was said to have done in that book with respect to finding the USS Scorpion and predicting what ultimately proved out to be the real cause of her loss was phenomenal to me.

I don't believe we are breeding that breed of cat these days.

Craven wrote his own book by the way, called "The Silent War" but he wouldn't admit to some of the exploits attributed to him in "Blind Mans Bluff."

If you are interested in espionage, submarines and intelligence stuff, don't start the book until you have time to read it through.  A friend of mine's wife told me he was reading it even in the bathtub.

Now I'll go check your links Unclesyd.


RE: Books I've recently acquired...

Alan Judd, "The Quest for C: Mansfield Cumming and the Founding of the Secret Service".

I've just read this, after buying it about 5 years ago...

Fairly heavy going in places.

And that's SIS as in MI6, by the way.

During WWI (around about 1915ish), his son was killed and he was injured in a road accident (car hit a tree).

Mansfield Cumming was trapped and cut off his own leg with a pocket knife to go to the aid of his son.

They don't make 'em like that any more...

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

I'm currently reading all I can on the works and life of Norman Corwin. He is/was the dean of radio writers. Get your hands on the manuscript or tape of:

On a Note of Triumph.

This was broadcast at the German surrender in WWII.

It was a stunning summary of who the Nazis were and what we learned during the war. It was prophetic in many ways.

(Tape avail from Radio Spirits, a radio tape outlet in the Schiller Park, Chicago area. Ask for the set called "War Time Radio." Manuscript from Amazon.com)

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

I just read "1984" for the first time.
I also have acquired via inter-library loan "Einflussfelder elastischer Platten."

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

1984 is the scariest book I have ever read. It disturbed me for a week. Better thing was that I didn't read it before 1984.

Two books I recently read are The Alchemist and The Secret. I opine that the first one is excellent.


Animal Farm is less scarier and condensed, sarcastic version of 1984 (by George Orwell himself).

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

I read "Animal Farm" in high school. I found it to be more of a user's manual on what to watch out for whenever someone aspires to be a revolutionary leader. I liked "1984"; it's really well-plotted, equally well-established characters, and has about as close to perfect and ending as I've ever read. I haven't seen any of the filmed versions, though I've read a lot of negative criticism, especially about the film released in 1984. After reading the book, I think that John Hurt as Winston Smith was perfect casting and likewise Richard Burton as O'Brien. Reading the latter part of the book, I could hear Richard Burton's voice coming off the pages.

I also liked "1984" because there weren't any plot holes. For example, Winston Smith doesn't know about the great big world out there or much of anything else because it's his job not to really know about much else and thus he, intelligently, gets himself in trouble - because he's being watched. He's also an athiest because there is no reason to believe in God or anything but the Party. "Brave New World," on the other hand, is full of plot holes (Huxley sort of admits this in the preface to the edition I have): Books are available to the Savage, especially Shakespeare and the Bible; there is exposure to other people, sexual freedom is kind of the law, etc., etc. - that is, there's ample opportunity for an individual, one outside of the caste system (and obviously a virile, potent, turgid "Alpha") to learn about right and wrong on his own - and yet the Savage goes off to some shack to mope until he decides the best thing to do is kill himself. Shoot, a character with as much brains as he had should've been exploiting his position and get into running things instead of feeling sorry for himself. Contrast this to Winston Smith who believes in his heart of hearts that there is no God because, how could there be? The only truth out there is what the Party says is truth. Also, Winston Smith did not take care of himself physically (why?) as the opportunity for exercise, other than elicit sexual liasons and the obligatory cursory callesthenics broadcast on the telescreen, didn't present itself. Why exercise when there's gin to drink...?

But I digress... Next on my list is a book I got from Vulcraft on bar joists...

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

Currently reading "Official Secrets: What the Nazis Planned, What the British and Americans Knew"
by Richard Breitman.

About the Holocaust & how much Churchill & Roosevelt knew about what was transpiring.

Not light reading by any means.

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

Future worlds?

Look no further than "Blade Runner" or "Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep".

Philip Kindred Dick's book titles are almost as peculiar as the books...

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

And this very weekend I purchased

The secrets of Bletchley Park's code-breaking computers"

by Jack Copeland et al.

A compendium describing the developement of Colossus during WWII.

Includes a short description by Tony Sale of the rebuilding of Colossus at Bletchley Park for the exhibition.

RE: Books I've recently acquired...


If you have an interest in such matters, you might want to checkout this site. It has a lot links to some other very interesting sites.

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

I have a rather alarming collection of books on the Enigma machine & its decoding... plus the Colossus books...

RE: Books I've recently acquired...


Have you read  "Enigma: The Battle for the Code"
by Hugh Sebag-Montefiore? Quite maths-heavy but a good read. Not ideal holiday material if you need rest though!

  Sometimes I only open my mouth to swap feet...

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

my favorite book-> "Herman The German: Just Lucky I Guess" by Gerhard Neumann

Brief Synopsis:  Engineer, Gerhard Neumann, who was a German trained Engineer, ended up an American war hero in WWII and an innovator in the field of aviation. After an unbelievably adventurous, 16 000 km long trip through Asia in a Jeep in 1946, Neumann settled down in the USA and reached the top of the gigantic engine-group General Electric within just few years.  Neumann developed the variable-stator jet engine for which he received eight patents.

A couple others also on my shelf is:
"Talking Straight" & "Iacocca: An Autobiography" by Lee Iacocca

"The End of Detroit" by Micheline Maynard

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

I am reading "Big Bang" by Simon Singh right now. It is a story about man's thoughts about the Universe, how it was created, how it works and also where it is going. Everything from Greeks and Mayas to present day wisdom(?). I haven't finished it yet. So I am not quite sure of the ending.

It is ironical to discover that my fellow countryman Max Tegmark now - when I thought that I was reasonably well informed - tells me that there probably wasn't a big bang at all...

I guess I will never live long enough to learn the truth.

Gunnar Englund

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

Yes I've read that book, ScottyUK... it's on a shelf groaning under the weight of Enigma & Colossus books... clown

I seen to have somewhat of an obsession for this subject, no idea quite why.

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

Try www.addall.com

At the bottom of the form is a "used books" link - right directly under the place where you can input title, author, etc.  If there is a book out there you are looking for, this will find it.  Sorts by price, too.

RE: Books I've recently acquired...

Author: Denis Guedj
Title of Greek edition: The stars of Berenice

Story: In ancient Egypt under the King Ptolemeus, Eratosthenes measures the perimeter of earth using simple maths and a "walking distance" meter. It's a fascinating story that shows how various factors (mainly people and  environment and secondly technology) contribute for the measurement.

The Eratosthenes measurment is considered to be 99% of the actual.


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