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Sunday
Sep142008

Nomograms

When I first came across nomograms in my early teens I was mystified by them.  They looked interesting but the article on stellar evolution they accompanied gave no clue on how to use them.  They looked a bit like graphs, but had three or more graduated scales, and these scales didn't have to be at right-angles to each other, indeed, they might even be curved!  It was only a few weeks later that I discovered that you were meant to lay a ruler or straight-edge across the graduated scales, and by doing so you could perform various calculations.  Nomograms are a sort of graphical generalization of a slide-rule, and like the slide-rule they became extinct following the introduction of pocket calculators.

Anyhow, these long dormant memories were triggered when I came across the following awesome series of posts by Ron Doerfler at Dead Reckonings:

Reader Comments (1)

Hi Tristram,

I think you would be quite interested in Leif Roschier’s site on Pynomo, which is free software to generate nomograms. It can be found at http://www.pynomo.org . He has created beautiful nomograms of all kinds. You can browse the “Basics” and “Examples” links on the site or click on the links in the Software Documentation area to see them.

Ron
November 15 | Unregistered CommenterRon Doerfler

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