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“ Everything Should Be Made as Simple as Possible, but no simpler. ”
— Albert Einsteine, He was a member of DA so I am told. I just knew him by sitting in his office on the Forrestal Campus of Prinston University. It was right over the small lane or path (both word fit) from Dr. Putnam’s workshop and small wind Tunnel where I worked as a contract engineer for Sikorsky on a special project. Heir Doktor Einstein’s office was in the building that had the soda machine and it was air conditioned.

Hello, my name is Jim and I am a dyslexic. It was funny to find this out by accident when I was forty while I was doing an inventory program for our internet business. I assigned FIVE categories of items and allotted two-hundred four digit number to each item. It automatically removed an item sold from inventory and added a received item into inventory. It also kept sales tax and income / payments for tax time. It was a very slick program but it found out I could not always enter a number correctly. A customer would call in with a part number and I would put it into the computer and it would tell me what the part number represented and many times it was not the one I heard the order was for. I would check the data base and see the number I entered was not the one for the item ordered.

About 1 out of 20 items numbers I would enter would come up with the wrong item. The printout of the data would come up on the screen as a different part number and description which were correctly pared on the data sheet but not what I had thought I entered. I had no explanation since I was programming far more advanced real time control programs in machine language my entire career. Then I began a trip through hell as a tourist. Back to grade school and my problems with spelling and reading. I totally gave up and rebelled against all school work. I was the kid who didn’t try hard enough, needed to apply myself, the real problem was the way things were done back then. For spelling I had no clue. Reading was fine until I had to keep track of where the reader before me had stopped, stand and continue to read from the spot the previous reader had been stopped. Then I was the boy who didn’t pay attention. I remember it was like I had a different book than he did as I could not see the same words he was saying in my book.

The whole spelling, reading and music thing was not anything I deliberately performed poorly so all the things people said about my attention, study habits and abilities became the cause of my total shutdown of attempting to play their silly games anymore. This went through till I was working as a mechanic in the day time and attending a make up year in night school for my totally nothing second year in university. The lame professors seemed to just ignore my questions either because they could not answer them or did not think I was worthy of their time. In night school I learned it was probably the former. Night school I took mostly math and it was taught by working engineers very involved in the use of the subject they taught every day at work. The explanations and examples of the subjects took my love of it to a level of seeing it as almost music. Not a good metaphor but what do you want from a dyslexic. So it was Professors O engineers 10. My moonlighting engineers showed me the way and when I returned to university the following year I was scoring very high and produced a scholastic average good enough to get me four job offers four months before gradation. I took the one working on the Apollo program as it was hot job at that time in history. A serendipity moment. I was in Electrical Design for less that two years when the design phase was over and everyone of us was laid off in alphabetical order. I went home and started to plan my new life on the LA beaches. Personnel called several time to tell me I was supposed to be at work for two weeks notice and not take a vacation but I would quickly speak up and say.“I believe you have severed our relationship and it will take more that two weeks to make amends for that. You have taken from me months of mandatory unpaid overtime. You can now apply that time served to my two weeks notice. Thank you very, very much. click!” That is me hanging up before they can reply.

It was a somewhat amusing game for the first couple of calls. Then I got a call from an engineer in Guidance and Control (referred to in many places as G & C) asking if I could arrange to drive down to their corporate headquarters for an interview. I was about to ask if I got mileage for the trip but its interesting nature said do not be a wisenheimer now. I asked what would be a convenient time for him and how to get there as if was in a corporate machining and manufacturing building and not the corporate division he worked in. We talked and I got the job. Turns out I was to be the first member of their team with out a masters degree in the common room of around 20 PhD's in math, physics, electrical and mechanical engineering.the lowly bachelors of engineering in any thing else in the room of about 20 people. they were all PhD's in math, electronics, mechanical and so on. The room had its own library but there was no light reading materials in it they were all 15 to 20 pound book of tables. Log tables, trig tables, constant and conversion tables. a whole room filled with these books. All of them weighing more than 15 pounds and expanded ℿ and the trig functions out to enough decimal places to navigate across a parsec. But then there were no scientific calculators then and there guys were designing and programming guidance systems for long range bomber, missiles and the Apollo landing module and like some of the THE ONES Rules you never spoke of them. Unlike university PhD's who knew every nook and cranny of their subject but never indicated what you use it for (at least to me when I would ask.) My new co-workers was significant testimony to the truth of the saying, “Them that can do. Them that can’t teach.”

So how did I work with that group and contribute. How was I getting more patents in weird things that were so simple to me but the engineers outside this group did not have a clue what I was doing and some so unbelieving talked about I was making up the results. I results were almost out of my control, the engines gave me the data via a magnetic pickup watching the ring gear teeth go by, fed through a clamping circuit that converted the voltage output to a computer friendly square wave of 0 and 5 volts. All the computer did was time period of the square wave and apply my filter which was necessary because I found that using each pulse instead of using every pair of two pulsed was garbage. The filter was to compensate for what I observed of a very repeatable spacial displacement of every other gear tooth. I got the idea of this by walking through the huge machine shop every day to be away where I could clear my thoughts and concentrate better. It was one of those walks that I saw a row of huge machines (each machine working on one part) drilling multiple holes with each down stroke of the multiple drill head. I thought this would explain the change in ever other gear tooth that was haunting me. I gave the filter to Phil my programming expert and he had it up and running in a few minutes after it went and had a new tape made to feed the computer input. The filtered results was the velocity of each gear at the time it was passing the magnetic pickup. or for my purpose the velocity of the flywheel at ever engine crank angle represented by the gear’s teeth. The first derivative of that was the acceleration the cylinder contributed to the speed and the next derivative was the Jerk of the cylinder to th velocity curve. The Jerk impulse I was part of the key to cylinder performance tuning So I can only assume that the technique used by Phil and I is being used in some of the engine control systems.

I could not sing in class or anywhere else, except for to places: on my Norton going down the highway and in an after concert in the house of a very kind but poor man who worked in a car wash who had a kids record player for music. I never knew his last name but we called him Bo Jangles. My friend Danny was the lead guitarist of a warm up band for the big names that came to the Woodrose Ballroom in the late 1960s-early 1970s. His day job was working in a car wash with a gentile man we called Bo Jangles. Bo had a three room second floor apartment which was always open to anyone. Bo was very poor but he did have a small child’s record player and when visiting we would always bring wine and records. Bo was very old and had a lot of stories to tell and many times Danny would bring the bands he played warm up for would always bring wne and and would bring some of these bands to Bo’s house after the concert was over. His band never came as they were in College and after playing they had to study or get to sleep His group played warm up for a lot of bands in the late 1960’. I liked to play in the woods alone and always had my guitar strapped to my back on my Norton Ranger wherever I went. To my great embarrassment one late night after a concert one of the big named band’s members asked me to play my guitar. I told him I could not sing or play anything he would recognize as music but he persisted and I with a night of Gallo’s Hearty Burgundy courage I said OK you asked for it. I played about five of my private wood’s songs and when I was done they seemed pleased so I asked them how could they stand my songs when theirs were so far greater than mine. The lead singer said it was because I was playing for them instead of them playing for strangers. I learned a lesson that night. Never bring my guitar to Bo’ again.

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dyslexics-anonymous.html 08/30/2019