Like many others, I took geometry and trigonometry back in high, mastered the concepts well enough to score decently on tests that evaluated my knowledge of those concepts, and promptly forgot everything afterwards. Come on, no one uses geometry or trigonometry in real life, right? The only time I use ‘sine’ and ‘cosine’ in conversations about dating/couples relationships, specifically those where the couple constantly fight and make-up!

So twenty years later, I’m working on specifications for bike parking at an angle . . . and in order to do so, I need to calculate minimum clearances, which would vary based on the skew angle, and all of a sudden it dawns on me that I need . . . I don’t even know what I need, trigonometry? geometry? to figure out the formula. (At least I know it’s not calculus). I also just realised that I don’t know any high school students anymore, otherwise I could ask them how to tackle this problem. Yup, I need some age-diversity in social circle.

UPDATE (10 minutes later): I don’t need to go cradle robbing. Joe actually figured out the formula for me. Although he is now pondering ‘is it sine or cosine that should be used’, and starts clicking away on his blackberry to check…

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Celia: do you know where one can find (cheaply) metal bike racks such as those installed in front of dorms or stores?

Mil Gracias