Friday, June 23, 2017

a little bit of math

...but just a little bit.

while we were at arbortrek, some of us were talking about how many times we'd clipped and unclipped the smartsnaps. i have to tell you that i am totally in love with these things, because the system is designed so once you're on the cable, you can't come off of it by mistake, and elements can be made directional by a wire key there being on one end  but not the other. if you're clipped to a wire you can move. if you're clipped to a ring, you're anchored. the only way to get from one wire to another is via a ring on account of some cables of appropriate length.

on the apple creek course we were on, there was even one place where we came down to the ground but could not detach from the system because a wire key had not been provided. i'm pretty sure the purpose of that is to keep guests from detaching themselves and then wandering up into the trees without being properly secure. you could have a guide come over and unlock you say, if you needed to use a bathroom or you wanted to get down and take pictures i guess, but you can't come off accidentally.

so i think it's a genius system.

anyway, we were talking about how many times we operated the smartsnap, and realized that it's a simple uniform growth of pattern thing, because at every platform (including the station on the ground) you're coming off of one wire and onto another wire with one ring in between, except at the ends where you are only either going on or coming off, so it's twice at each end and three times at every other node, no matter how many platforms you visited, provided you moved from platform to platform and didn't mess around with clipping in repeatedly at the same place.

so with normal movement it's 3(n-2) + 4 where n = the number of platforms you were on.

i knew you'd want to know.

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