Monday, June 4, 2018

the long and lat of it

I have to think a bit about Latitude and Longitude to do Porchfest website maps - especially when I try to tweak their position in an X/Y axis kind of way. The other day I posted on FB
Honestly the only way I keep track of Latitude vs Longitude is the old beer commercial (Corona?) that says "change your latitude", i.e. think in a more southernly climes way...
Some of my friends responded with some interesting devices to remember which is which:
  • Liz: "Longitude is long. Latitude is Fat."
  • Dave A: "Latitude lines are horizontal like the rungs of a ladder. That's how I have always remembered it, even though that's a stretch of a mnemonic."
  • Tim: I remember learning it with the second-letter correspondence... L(A)ttitue runs e(A)st to west. L(O)ngitue runs n(O)rth to s(O)uth.
I tried visualizing all of these, but none of them seem helpful. I realize maybe it's because I'm a "interactional" thinker - each of these describe how the lines look when inscribed on a globe (latitude is fAT, or like lAdder rungs, or running EAst to West) but my visualization is more "what number changes as I travel north to south, say?" - kind of the exact opposite of Tim's method.

I think this may be an example of "nouns vs verbs" thinking. I feel it's a spectrum for many folks - probably "bathtub curve" shaped. It's pretty abstract, but I think many programmers think in nouns, and they're the ones who love Object Oriented programming, and Declarative program -- "lets start with what you are, and then fill in what you do, or how you do it" while I'm always more concerned with "what are we doing, how are we interacting".

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