Category: Improvement

There’s Always a Better Way And More Than One Solution

While this may be a brief post, it serves to exemplify my often stated phrase:

There’s always a better way and more than one solution.

I was perusing a Wikipedia article on the Fortran programming language and paid special attention to a short block of code to calculate the area of a triangle. The program was using a formula that I didn’t recognize from all those years of learning!

The code makes a reference to Heron’s Formula to calculate the area of a triangle where the length of all three sides are known. Searching on Wikipedia brought me to Heron’s Formula page and the formula to calculate the area of a triangle as pictured below:

This formula does not look at all like the “Area = 1/2(base x height)” formula we learned in school.

Heron’s formula may not be an easier way or even a better way. It is perhaps, just another way! Personally, I prefer the method we used in school, but I’d be curious to know if there is a case to be made for using Heron’s formula instead.

Until Next Time – STAY lean!


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