Author Archives: jtolpin

Its OK to Think Inside the Box

                  Yes it’s fine to think inside the box for a change, especially when there’s no need to think at all! At least not if your goal is to divide the box … Continue reading

Posted in From Truths to Tools | 1 Comment

What to Touch with a 10′ Pole

Once upon a time, 10′ poles were a tool common to a number of trades including linemen and cemetery workers. What they touched with their 10′ poles – high-voltage power lines and corpses respectively – is not something most people … Continue reading

Posted in From Truths to Tools, Uncategorized | 8 Comments

As Aequus as Aqua

Or, translated from the Latin: “As Level as Water.” As we explored ancient layout tools at length in “From Truths to Tools,” it became quite clear that the artisans of antiquity were no dummies. For example, we see from their … Continue reading

Posted in From Truths to Tools, Uncategorized | 10 Comments

I Don’t Use These as a Rule

Well that’s not entirely true, of course. I do use them when I need to make up a cut list from a full-scale drawing or story stick to tell a machine in numerical code (be it metric, Imperial or shaku) … Continue reading

Posted in From Truths to Tools, Uncategorized | 8 Comments

The Hand, the Hound or the Truth?

Editor’s note: Sorry, this post is not about “Game of Thrones.” George and I often get asked which book should be read first, and we don’t have a quick answer. Because our research has been a quest, we didn’t write … Continue reading

Posted in By Hand & Eye, By Hound and Eye, From Truths to Tools, Uncategorized | 7 Comments

Taking Refuge in Geometry

Over the recent season of political and social angst I’ve been finding solace in research and development work with my co-author George Walker. While our fellow countrymen argue the gray areas of morality and policy, George and I have immersed … Continue reading

Posted in From Truths to Tools, Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Does This Entasis Make me Look Fat?

Well no, dear, the curvaceous tapering just makes you look muscular. Or maybe it’s just an optical illusion. Or maybe the builders knew that the swelling, though slight, imparted a bit more strength to the column. But let’s not get … Continue reading

Posted in By Hand & Eye, By Hound and Eye, Uncategorized | 2 Comments