The Stresses in Masonry Dams


MR. MARTIN at first asserted that my reasoning was wrong on some general principle which I failed to grasp, whereas he has now fallen back on the order of the approximation, and appeals to what he terms an axiom of practical mathematics, which he illustrates by the statement that between 0 and parabola can be found “differing but little from sin x.” If by the method of least squares a parabola be fitted to sin x, it will be found to differ by more than 30 per cent, from the ordinate of sin x when x = 5°; whether that difference is material or not depends entirely on what use is to be served by the correspondence.

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PEARSON, K. The Stresses in Masonry Dams . Nature 77, 366–367 (1908).

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