Sunday, January 10, 2010

Strictly for the nerds

My travels around the web brought me to this piece which I have shamelessly copied, word by word. Don't be under any illusion that I wrote this myself. This is one of those posts which I put up just to fill up the empty space. It's already ten days into the new year and I haven't got any ideas, so here I am starting the new year with something to leave you dizzy and make your head spin with confusion.

A spoon is a hand tool used for transporting food to the mouth. For convenience, in this Entry, the material to be transported will be called the stuff.

A spoon is made up of two parts, the bowl and the handle.
The handle is designed to allow the user to support and move the bowl in comfort, and so is usually reasonably rounded and of a size which is easily held in the hand. Some spoons have their bowl and handle made out of the same material, eg wood or metal. Many use different materials, as the differing desired characteristics of bowl and handle can often be best met by two different materials.

The bowl is a structure designed to provide a local area of reduced gravitational potential, surrounded by a closed loop of greater gravitational potential. If used in a gravitational field the bowl thus constrains the content to remain within it unless the user imposes a force on the content such as to produce an acceleration large enough to overcome the gravity well. Increasing the potential difference between the bottom and sides of the bowl (by deepening the bowl) allows the user to accelerate the spoon more rapidly in a direction perpendicular to the applied field without spillage. This modification of the bowl (as well as a change in bowl/handle relationship, and often in the size of the bowl) can be seen in a related specialised tool, the ladle.

Method of Use

The stuff to be transported is introduced into the bowl of the spoon using different methods depending on its physical state. Liquid stuff is usually put in the bowl by keeping the bowl horizontal, and moving it down into the body of the liquid until the surface of the stuff is above the outer rim (the lip) of the bowl. The bowl referred to here and throughout this Entry is the bowl of the spoon, not the vessel used to hold the liquid. At this point, the liquid will flow into the bowl down the resulting gravitational potential gradient, displacing the air from the bowl as it does so. When full, the spoon is lifted out of the liquid. The liquid cannot flow out of the bowl, due to the gravitational potential well imposed by its shape. Some liquid may be lost on the way to the user's mouth, but this is usually only a small proportion of the content of the bowl.

Solid stuff is usually introduced into the bowl by rotating the spoon along its long axis, lowering one side of the bowl. This reduces the gravitational potential gradient and physical barrier presented by the side of the bowl which prevents stuff from easily entering it. Deft manipulation of the spoon, sometimes in conjunction with the use of another implement or a piece of bread can then bring the stuff inside the lip of the bowl, and returning the spoon to an axially horizontal orientation traps the stuff in the bowl.

Spoons can carry liquid stuff to a volume equal to the volume of the interior of the bowl, plus any remaining stuff that adheres to the external surface of the bowl. Granular or powdery solid stuff are intermediate cases, as they can flow under gravity or under the influence of acceleration.

Once at the mouth, the spoon is usually emptied in one of two ways:
The slurp - this is most effective for liquid stuff. The lips of the mouth are opened slightly and the bowl of the spoon, still held horizontally, is brought up very close to or touching the lower lip at the gap between the middle of the lips. The user then inhales rapidly. The pressure drop caused by the movement of the air (the Bernoulli effect) causes the stuff to flow upwards into the air stream and enter the mouth, where it is caught when it bangs into the tongue. This is usually accompanied by a rotation of the spoon along its long axis, towards the mouth, introducing more stuff into the air stream. The bowl is often introduced into the mouth at the end of this procedure to remove any remaining stuff. The slurp is particularly useful if the bowl contains hot liquid stuff, as the creation of fine droplets of stuff in the moving air tends to make it loose its heat very rapidly to the relatively large volume of air, preventing burning of the mouth.

The placing of the bowl of the spoon in the mouth - The lips are closed around the bowl and used to retain its content in the mouth when the bowl is removed.

Spoons vary in their shape and capacity depending on their intended use. They are generally low maintenance tools, having no internal moving parts. New materials continue to extend the possibilities of spoon design.

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  1. Sounds like something written by an over-earnest, over-starched Indian know-it-all. The appropriate response to it in this day and age would be, "Can you just give me the youtube link please?"

  2. Hoho, how complicated a simple thing can be made into! Once i read a lawyer's term for the word 'give' which ran into about ten or fifteen sentences.

  3. J & mesjay - I actually liked the way the writer has broken down every tiniest movement and explained it scientifically. It just goes to show that every little thing has a scientific and logical explanation and makes me appreciate the wonder of creation.

  4. ambs, you have a science background, we don't. Lit. people can be quite scientifically-challenged :D

  5. Maybe that's why I am so poetically challenged.

  6. I wouldn't be surprised if an article such as this finds itself on the pages of MAD, but with illustrations.
    Worth pondering upon what he (I don't think I'm wrong in assuming the writer to be a HE, based on the detailed description and intricate eye-for-detail of something so lifelessly ordinary!) might cook up to describe something as death-defyingly boring as maybe a door or something.

  7. ...and we'd like to hear the 'Scientific' & 'Logical' explanation 'bout you.... :-D

  8. Haha... Thanks for the tutorial :P Have shared it with my SU community :)

  9. Va chhar dangdai tak ve mawle!!! he he..... instrument hrang2 kan zirlai min ti hre chhuak!!! "I hming eng nge?" tihzawhna hi lokal ta se, " Ka PU chu" tih atang a "kan FA TUR te chu" tih chanchin thleng sawi a ngai kan ti fiamthu thin!!! khi pawh hi a detail cher2 khawp mai!!!

    Tlem belh ve law law ang!!

    The Spoon consist of 3 parts:
    1) the bowl,
    2) the handle and,
    3) the shaft

    As 1) and 2) are already describe above, we will describe 3) only

    The shaft: the part of the spoon which connects the bowl and the handle. The shaft is usually smaller in size than the handle. From the end point of the handle, the size tapers or decrease towards the shaft. At the point where the handle and the shaft meets, it continues to tapers and the point where the shaft meets the
    bowl, is the smallest part of the spoon. The shaft provide extra area for support from the middle/ring finger for the spoon during transferring of stuffs.

    However, different shape emerge according to the manufacturer. Some spoon have the shaft and the handle same in size.

    Why it is called 'the shaft'? why not apart of the handle???
    That's because "who the hell ever held the spoon near the bowl anyway!?!?!? *oink* *oink*

    Usually spoons (the bowl, the shaft and the handle) are straight. However, some spoon have an angle with the bowl to the shaft and the handle. Depending on the manufacturer, it can bend from 10 - 30 degrees.

    In this type of 'bended' or 'angled' spoon, special precaution should be taken while transferring stuff. The hand must be tilted more inward/downward than we usually do in a straight spoon to a certain degree, the degree which is directly proportional to the degree possess by the angled spoon.

    A thui luttuk dawn duh tawk hrih mai ang!!! he he he

  10. Here is 'Spoonful' a song by the super group of the 60's,Cream.
    'Could fill spoons full of diamond
    Could fill spoons full of gold
    Just a little spoon of your precious love
    Will satisfy my soul'.

  11. blackestred – death-defyingly boring hahaha! I like that word / phrase. Whoever wrote this little piece must have plenty of time in his hands.

    Alejendro – I make unscientific and illogical decisions, which is the closest I can get to being scientific and logical :P

    Darshan – Thanks for the visit.

    wonderboy - well done! Han ziak zel la mawle. Fork te pawh ziak leh zel la

    dr_feelgood – Interesting lyrics. What’s it about really? Some people say it’s about drugs, some say it’s about sex, some say it’s about the little things in life that make you happy; what say you?

  12. nice post. some geek may find it useful

  13. Thank you, Keichala. And thanks for visiting.

  14. a khai thlawh tha ve a..tunlai chu ka blog khat topss...rawn en leh zeuh2 tawh ang..

  15. Thanks utai, nia i inla vang khawp mai tunlai chu.

  16. Spoon can also be used as a musical instrument :-)