I have a calculator. I can answer all the math problems I'll ever need because I own a calculator. There are many people that worry me when they say they were never any good at math: the nurse administering the medication, the clerk counting my change, the broker managing my investments, the salesman offering me financing at the car dealership, and now, the cop giving parking tickets:
The Herald reported last week that a Traffic Warden was incorrectly ticketing cars in a Devon, England parking lot because of how he was using a calculator. In this parking lot, drivers would pay for a certain amount of time and then post a slip in the windshield with the time they’d entered and how long they’d paid for. One driver, for example, entered at 2:49pm and paid for 75 minutes.
Now 75 minutes is 1 hour, 15 minutes so the driver was covered until 4:04pm. But the Traffic Warden figured out the expiration time by entering in 14.49 into his calculator (for 1449 military time, which corresponds to 2:49pm) and adding on 0.75 (for the 75 minutes). He got 15.24, which he interpreted as meaning that the driver was only covered until 3:24pm. Since it was already 3:41pm, he issued the car a ticket. The car owner saw all this and tried to explain the error — that hours have 60 minutes, not 100, so standard decimal addition doesn’t apply — but the Traffic Warden didn’t see any problem and continued to ticket cars.
In good news, after appeal the incorrect tickets were repealed and a letter of apology sent.
I have been reading a series by author Colleen McCullough called the Masters of Rome. Two nights ago, I finished reading the second book in the series. Spanning over 1000 pages per book, I have been utterly fascinated by the lives of men playing pivotal roles leading up to the beginning of the Roman Empire as it moves out of its time as the Roman Republic.
Here is the review I posted over at the GoodReads.com website:
Fascinating continuation of Colleen McCullough's Master's of Rome series. This is the second book in the series of seven and it covers the Civil/Social war under the eventual leadership of Lucius Cornelius Sulla. It deals largely with the rise of Sulla to leadership both in military campaigns as well as policital power. It finishes with the fall of Gauis Marius, the third founder of Rome, as his mind fails following two strokes and he takes over Rome in a blood bath, killing anyone in Rome who once stood against him. It is his final goal before dying to subdue the rising star of Gauis Julius Caesar, which he supposedly does so by placing him in the role of a lifelong priesthood. The tale ends there, but we all know that Julius Caesar is not out for good and is destined to become the greatest man Rome has ever or will ever see.
I continue to enjoy this series and am continually fascinated by how developed society was even thousands of years ago. The struggles of society not all that different than today, only without the western influence of Christianity.
Rating: 4 stars (out of 5)