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    Re: Slocum's lunars
    From: Jan Kalivoda
    Date: 2003 Dec 13, 21:03 GMT

    George, sorry, but I cannot understand you:
    
    > In those days, tables for printing were set by hand, and there was much
    > scope for things to go wrong. I have read of other cases of printed errors,
    > and we can't reject the possibility of a whole column of them.
    
    If I can imagine the process of preparing the book by hand, the digits of
    table values were set one by one. Accordingly, I can understand a casual
    printing error in one digit of one logarithm, but what mental process could
    cause the error in a whole vertical column, while adjacent columns should be
    correct?
    
    And two following paragraphs seem to be contradictory:
    
    
    > Nor can we reject the possibility that Slocum did something wrong, got a
    > silly answer, and then found a way to "fiddle" things to get a better one
    > by altering a set of numbers in a table. But Slocum would be asking for
    > trouble in doing that, because it would be so easy to check it
    > retrospectively. Publishing it in a book, which would be widely read by his
    > seagoing contemporaries, he was surely aware that the first question
    > another mariner would ask him would be "What was the table that was wrong,
    > and what were those errors?", so that they could correct their own copies.
    
    Therefore it would have been dangerous for Slocum to lay false claim for
    correcting a table value?
    
    
    > I agree with Herbert that his claim to have detected, and then corrected,
    > an error in a table was a remarkable feat: so remarkable as to make it hard
    > to accept.
    
    Or not?
    
    
    Jan Kalivoda
    
    
    

       
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