[Wolves] OT: Maths problem

Jon Masters jonathan at jonmasters.org
Fri Nov 26 16:22:48 GMT 2004

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sparkes wrote:
| sparkes wrote:
|> I have a problem that is driving me mad.  Perhaps I should have paid
|> more attention in school ;-)

| answering my own question for the benefit of google

You'd also find reading up on polar co-ordinates of use. For example:

Mathematical Techniques by Jordan and Smith (ISBN: 0-19-924972-5).

This book is useful.

It's taught me a lot that I never got around to or bothered to learn
before - I've not read nearly half of it yet but I plan to as I want to
learn how various bits tie together. For example, many people know what
a Fourier Transform is but don't have the first clue how it works.

| x = length*cos( θ )
| y = length*sin( θ )

In terms of polar co-ordinates, x and y are the cartesian representation
and r (length) and θ (angle) describe the polar view. You can even then
treat these as real and imaginary componants and convert in to an
exponential if you want!

| bloody simple when you know how, although I am not sure I know how ;-)

I spent a long time recently trying to understand simple things like
harmonic functions and damping. I still haven't gone through all of the
fine points of damped harmonics but I do have enough of an understanding
to realise what some kit at work is trying to do. The company make NMR
spectrometers which receive a sinusoid signal in response to a stimulus
and convert it out in to two components similar to how you describe
above but using something called quadrature detection. It's enough
really to rekindle a lost interest in maths :-)

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