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A Colleague Is Featured in National Enquirer !

A researcher in complex dynamics, and former colleague of mine, has been featured in our nation's premiere tabloid. To celebrate this landmark event, the entire article is reproduced below.


by Colin Brennan
March 3, 1999

NUTTY PROFESSOR SPENDS $720,000 -
TO STOP TEAPOTS FROM DRIBBLING

THE POUR GUY'S STILL TRYING: After 17 years of research - and endless calculations, the professor still can't get a handle on The Drip.

For everyone worried about dribbling teapos, you can finally relax. A real-life Nutty Professor has spent $720,000 on taxpayer-sponsored research - and is closing in on a solution to this pressing problem.

Just when you thought the government was wasting your money, a major improvement in your everyday life may result from the professor's relentless study of fluid dynamics.

"I've been doing this research for 17 years. It was supported by the U.S. Navy and the U.S. Air Force and the National Science Foundation," spouted wild-haired math professor Jean-Marc Vanden-Broeck.

His research gets government backing because the mathematics that explains the flow of tea also apply to the resistance of waves to a ship's hull.

The 47-year-old researcher - who deosn't even drink tea - worked at the University of Wisconsin until he recently moved to the University of East Anglia in Norwich, England, where he's a professor of mathematics.

Among his many challenges, he's trying to brew up a foolproof way of stopping teapots from dripping when they are poured.

"Pouring tea has always been a problem," said the Prof - who's just issued a 20-page report filled with his mathematical calculations about the Big Drip.

"All teapots have the potential for two kinds of flow. Either the tea goes neatly into the cup or it dribbles down the side of the spout."

"Trouble is, it's impossible to predict which is going to happen at any time."

"It is a bit like Russian roulette every time you have a cup of tea. Theoretically, my calculations should be able to work out the optimum type of teapot to make dribbling a thing of the past."

"But it will take time - you've got to take into account the heat of the water, size of spout, angle of pour, and shape of the teapot."

The Belgian-born scientist still thinks he can get to the bottom of this tempest in a teapot.

"I'II keep working at it!" he vows.


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