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The slide rule , also known colloquially in the United States as a slipstick , [1] [2] is a mechanical analog computer . [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] The slide rule is used primarily for multiplication and division, and also for functions such as exponents , roots , logarithms and trigonometry , but typically not for addition or subtraction. Though similar in name and appearance to a standard ruler, the slide rule is not meant to be used for measuring length or drawing straight lines.

Slide rules exist in a diverse range of styles and generally appear in a linear or circular form with a standardized set of markings (scales) essential to performing mathematical computations. Slide rules manufactured for specialized fields such as aviation or finance typically feature additional scales that aid in calculations common to those fields.

At its simplest, each number to be multiplied is represented by a length on a sliding ruler. As the rulers each have a logarithmic scale, it is possible to align them to read the sum of the logarithms, and hence calculate the product, of the two numbers.

The slide rule , also known colloquially in the United States as a slipstick , [1] [2] is a mechanical analog computer . [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] The slide rule is used primarily for multiplication and division, and also for functions such as exponents , roots , logarithms and trigonometry , but typically not for addition or subtraction. Though similar in name and appearance to a standard ruler, the slide rule is not meant to be used for measuring length or drawing straight lines.

Slide rules exist in a diverse range of styles and generally appear in a linear or circular form with a standardized set of markings (scales) essential to performing mathematical computations. Slide rules manufactured for specialized fields such as aviation or finance typically feature additional scales that aid in calculations common to those fields.

At its simplest, each number to be multiplied is represented by a length on a sliding ruler. As the rulers each have a logarithmic scale, it is possible to align them to read the sum of the logarithms, and hence calculate the product, of the two numbers.

that Moore and I rebelled against both Kant and Hegel . Moore led the way, but I followed closely in his footsteps.... I felt…a great liberation, as if I had escaped from a hot house onto a windswept headland. In the first exuberance of liberation, I became a naïve realist and rejoiced in the thought that grass really is green. (Russell 1959, 22)

This important event in Russell’s own intellectual history turned out to be decisive for the history of twentieth-century philosophy as a whole; for it was this revolutionary break with British Idealism—then the most influential school of philosophical thought in the British universities—that birthed analytic philosophy and set it on the path to supplanting both Idealism and philosophy as traditionally conceived and practiced.

To understand Russell’s elation at the rebellion, one needs to know something about him and also something about British Idealism. Let’s begin with the latter.


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