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 Grass Roots (Posted on 2004-12-12)

You have been captured by a mad king, he has placed you in a large field, he says you are free to go once you have calculated the area of the field.

He has left you with 1 pencil, 1 piece of paper, and 1 30cm ruler.

What is the quickest way to work out the area of the field, so you can go home to your family?

NOTE, from any position inside the field you can see the entire perimeter, assume that the field has four straight sides, though the angles may all be different.

Also, the area of the field is large enough to make it impractical to measure with the ruler

 See The Solution Submitted by Juggler Rating: 4.5000 (2 votes)

Comments: ( Back to comment list | You must be logged in to post comments.)
 re: the author's solution | Comment 12 of 13 |
Clever method, Juggler.  I wonder if surveyors use anthing like this method.  All the solutions, except for measuring one's foot and then counting heel-to-toe steps, make use of the concept of parallax.  Or at least "similar triangles" as in Charlie's.

One detail:  in the posted solution wouldn't you have to multiply the area on the paper by the square of the ratio?
 Posted by Larry on 2004-12-17 16:52:13

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