January 7, 2013

What I'm eating today ~ 1/7

Last week I commented on not knowing what to do without any salad greens in the house.  In truth, we have bags of frozen spinach that were harvested before downy mildew took over and are not totally bereft of green things to eat.  I've also watered the nearly-dried-out greens that were left to fend for themselves in the greenhouses during Christmas break.  So, soon I'll be back in business.

In the meantime, I'm wrestling with the quadratic equation.  If you haven't thought about this since high school (like me!) it looks like this:  Ax2 + Bx + C = Y  or this:   X = (-B +/- √(-B – 4AC)) /(2A).  I'm using it to look at all the growth rate data from the fall.  So far it's a bit headache-inducing, but makes me glad I've hung onto my TI-83.  (For anyone older than me I think you used slide rules to do algebra?  Wikipedia describes slide rules as 'mechanical analog computers,' which sounds like a term that would get you shoved into a locker). 


  1. omg, there's actually a real world use for the quadratic equation? If I remember correctly, we used slide rules mostly for trigonometry... I think that just set off a mental math flashback ;)

    1. After struggling with them I realize you're right - quadratic equations are just done by hand. How were square roots found before calculators though? I'm writing a follow up post for friday - I'm sure everyone wants to think about quadratic equations some more to know what I'm using them for.