## 20131025

### Formulas for Squircles

The Desmos online graphing calculator is useful for visualizing mathematical equations such as the squircle.

The formula for the red circular arc is for comparison. The blue line is the squircle and the orange and green lines are higher order shapes. Odd values produce tangents. Closer inspection of the higher order shapes reveals a gap above of the x-axis. Why is this?

Additionally, the calculator supports sliding variables so the numbers 2,4,6,8 above can be replaced by the variable "a" in a single equation and assigned a stepping value of 2. (Also try 0.2)

## 20131013

### Pocket Trains Strategy Guide

Below are some tips for Pocket Trains (iOS version 1.0.6), serving as guidance from level 4 through level 20 with expansion to the North American continent. An enjoyable and engaging interactive experience with some geography lessons for good measure.

Getting started:
Aim to build and operate five railroads between 11 cities in Europe. This is sufficient to fund the start up phase.

The Jobs button leads to a list of available cargo to haul, grouped by city, mixed with items parked in the yard. Upgrade the station to increase the yard size. Each prospective shipment has a coin-number assignment (1 through 4) to indicate relative value of the job. Maximize profit by prioritizing selections in the following order: bux, crates, event cargo, 4-coin, yard cars. Choose 3-coin and 2-coin only if the higher priority shipments are not available. This strategy might involve hauling a few pieces in the opposite direction temporarily. Choose to haul as many cars as possible. Don't bother with 1-coin offers unless there's no better option and it is delivered at the next destination - storing single coin cars clutters valuable yard space.

Let's take a closer look...