Archive for January 18th, 2015
There’s a fundamental error in my writeup about setting the APRS Smart Beaconing parameters for the bike trackers: I blundered the units of Turn Slope.
Rich Painter recently explained how that works:
I ran across your blog on Smart Beaconing and saw something that needed correction.
You state the Turn Slope is in units Degrees / MPH
This is incorrect. Although the term Turn Slope is not a real slope (such as rise/run classically) that is what the originators used albeit incorrectly. They do however correctly attribute the units to MPH * Degrees (a product and hence not really a slope).
In their formula they calculate a turn threshold as:
turn_threshold = min_turn_angle + turn_slope / speed
Looking at the units we see:
= Degrees + (MPH * Degrees) / MPH
= Degrees + Degrees
Which makes sense. It is too bad that the originators used the wrong term of Turn Slope which confuses most people. A better term would have been Turn Product.
In looking back over that post, I have no idea where or how I got the wrong units, other than by the plain reading of the “variable name”.
As he explained in a followup note:
As for units… I was introduced to making unit balance way back in 1967-1968 science class in HS by a really fine science teacher. It has served me all my life and I’m thankful for that training.
I have ever since told that teacher so!
A while back, our Larval Engineer rammed an engineering physics class head-on and sent me a meme image, observing that I’d trained her well: if the units don’t work out, then you’re doing it wrong.
Yes, yes, I do care about the units: