Sunday, February 5, 2012

Every creature casts a shadow under the sun's golden finger

When graphic artists were called upon to personify gear-wheels as a cartoon character for advertisements, traditionally they showed them with expressions that are at best neutral or inexpressive. This went on for centuries. John Ptak remarked on it:
Anthropomorphic images of the Gear have appeared in books in the West for several hundred years, and in almost every case where the Gear has a face, it is usually expressionless, its mouth drawn into a mid-Western farmer/Abe Lincoln horizontal, a tightly drawn nothing. Two thin lips, firmly repulsing all emotion.
You can understand why the gear in the picture is looking pissed off: the gear-cutting technology of 1543 was so rudimentary that it is stuck with teeth that are impractical if they function at all. The eccentric cam to the right is having a quiet snigger.


See the optimal gear teeth below! The profiles are involutes of a circle, which keep the torque and the rotatory movement constant, as Euler showed in the 18th century amid loud Huzzah!s from the mathematicians and a veritable crescendo of The Explaining Voice.

LinkNo wonder the wheel is looking less grumpy. It would probably be even happier but it has just been listening to doleful songs from The Handsome Family about Eurydice in the Garden of Eden.

The eccentric cam is still eccentric.

Alternative title: See the Black Sun rise.

15 comments:

Jennifer said...

Happy Waitangi Day! w00t!

El Manquécito said...

Eccentricity, whether in gearheads or cams, is not a self-correcting phenomenon.

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

Nice youtuber, S.C.
~

Substance McGravitas said...

Not pictured: particularly stumpy octopi.

H. Rumbold, Master Barber said...

This isn't Pharyngula, thank God.

Smut Clyde said...

Happy Waitangi Day! w00t!

Thank you Jennifer. This is how I celebrated.

Another Kiwi said...

Thanks Jennifer.

wiley said...

INVOLUTES!!! YOU'RE TALKING TO ME ABOUT INVOLUTES!!!

Have you no shame!

Big Bad Bald Bastard said...

That Jennifer does her homework!

Eccentricity, whether in gearheads or cams, is not a self-correcting phenomenon.

What about eccentricity in blogs (not cogs)?

Laura said...

Excuse me? Did you just say that the sun is giving me the finger?
Well f.u. sun!

((Hugs))
Laura

M. Bouffant said...

This is how I celebrated.

I hope you're not one of those road hog bicyclists.

And that you don't have a metal soundtrack w/ you.

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

I love that gear illustration. Brings back memories of simpler, happier times in Machine Drafting class....

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

Have you no shame!

I think for them Riddlers, it's kind of involutary.

Substance McGravitas said...

We've been threatened with volutes in another thread!

Smut Clyde said...

I hope you're not one of those road hog bicyclists.
And that you don't have a metal soundtrack w/ you.


It was not about a bicycle. Also I did not have a metal soundtrack for fear of the agitation of the Liddle Shining Man the Adam causing the atoms of the headphones to change place with those of my head, and contrarywise.