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  1. #1
    Atomic Punk chefcraig's Avatar
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    Scientists Endeavor To Discover Why Knots Are Formed...No, Seriously!

    More from the "You've Simply Got To Be Shitting Me" Dept...

    The Science of Knots Unraveled
    Jeanna Bryner
    LiveScience Staff Writer
    LiveScience.com
    Thu Oct 4, 8:30 AM ET

    Tangled telephone cords and electronic cables that come to resemble bird nests can frazzle even the most stoic person. Now researchers have unraveled the mystery behind how such knots form.

    Two physicists used string-tumbling experiments and mathematical models to create a step-by-step recipe for knot formation and determined which factors cause the knottiest knots. Their research, published online this week by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, sheds light on an everyday phenomenon about which little was known beyond the madness it incites.

    "It's a common annoyance in everyday life, that anything that's like a string inevitably seems to get itself into a knot,” said the study's senior author Douglas Smith of the University of California, San Diego.

    He added, “Very little experimental work had been done to apply knot theory to the analysis and classification of real, physical knots."

    Smith and UCSD colleague Dorian Raymer ran a series of homespun experiments in which they dropped a string into a box and tumbled it for 10 seconds (one revolution per second). They repeated the string-dropping more than 3,000 times varying the length and stiffness of the string, box size and tumbling speed.

    Digital photos and video of the tumbling strings revealed: Strings shorter than 1.5 feet (.46 meters) didn't form knots; the likelihood of knotting sharply increased as string length went from 1.5 feet to 5 feet (.46 meters to 1.5 meters); and beyond this length, knotting probability leveled off.

    Observations could only go so far. “It is virtually impossible to distinguish different knots just by looking at them,” Raymer said.

    Raymer developed a computer program to try and mimic their observations. From the model, they created a simplified "lifecycle" of a knot from tidy beginning to titanic tangle. Once dropped, the string formed concentric coils. Next, the string's free end weaved through the coils, with a 50 percent likelihood of crossing under or over the coil and following a path to the left or right.

    The best knotting came from very flexible, long string contained in a large box. "A highly flexible string placed in a very large container will have a higher probability of becoming knotted than a stiff one that's confined in a smaller container," Smith told LiveScience.

    The researchers suggest that cramped quarters limit the tumbling motion that facilitates the string weaving through the coils. That would explain why knots were less likely to form in smaller compared with larger boxes.

    But in real life, most people don't tumble cords and wires on a daily basis. Smith explained that while this tumbling is not a requirement for knots to form, some motion is necessary.

    "Surprisingly little disturbance or motion is even needed," Smith said. "It's quite easy for something to get knotted." Even the act of picking up the phone and placing it back down could be enough jostling to trigger knot
    formation.

    While there is no magical knot buster, Smith advised what all sailors, cowboys, electricians, sewers and knitters know:
    To avoid tangles, keep a cord or string tied in a coil so it can't move.


    http://news.yahoo.com/s/livescience/...knotsunraveled
    Last edited by chefcraig; 10.04.07 at 11:22 AM.
    "The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man."
    George Bernard Shaw

  2. #2
    Webmaster/Graphic Artist Top Timmy's Avatar
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    Reading all that made me feel naughty...get it? Naughty...thank you I'll be here all weekend...please try the fish.
    Webmaster/Graphic Artist
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  3. #3
    Atomic Punk WinterlessIceness's Avatar
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    I think cords and cables are just alive I swear. I start rehearsals with my band with everything neatly laid on the floor - in a few hours it starts resembling a snakes pit

  4. #4
    Atomic Punk smithjc's Avatar
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    I hope the govt. didn't fund their project. Why the heck do they need to know that????
    RIP - Classic Van Halen

    "A lot of people take Van Halen more seriously than we do." The Diamond One



  5. #5
    Atomic Punk
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    12.11.17 @ 04:37 PM
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    this 1.2 Million research project was funded by the US Govt, ie OUR TAXES!!!


    knot!





    http://www.knots.org/exhibit/who.html
    Last edited by voivod; 10.04.07 at 01:09 PM.
    "Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack.” -- Gen. George S. Patton

  6. #6
    Sinner's Swing! InTheBeginning's Avatar
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    07.20.17 @ 05:17 PM
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    I'm so confused!!! The rabbit comes out of the hole, then... damn!!

    A little more volume in the headphones please.

  7. #7
    Atomic Punk stilleddiesangel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Top Timmy View Post
    Reading all that made me feel naughty...get it? Naughty...thank you I'll be here all weekend...please try the fish.
    Dont give up the day job dude!
    ****Texas - Home Of My Heart****

    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

 

 

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