Thursday, April 25, 2013

Two Qualities Every Local Public Official Should Aspire To Possess

There are two qualities that every local public official should aspire to possess:

Patience and Wisdom

Monday, April 15, 2013

Thomas Edison's Light Bulb Test

Thomas Edison, the inventor of the incandescent bulb, was an incessant inventor.   When he needed to expand his staff, he  employed an unusual technique for interviewing the engineers for positions on his staff.  Every prospective  applicant who came in for an interview was handed a light bulb.  Edison then asked the engineer to determine the exact amount of water the bulb could hold.

Edison knew very well that there were two basic ways an applicant could determine the correct answer to his question.

The first, was to apply several engineering gauges and mathematical protractors to each of the complex angles of the glass bulb. Then, using a slide ruler and applying basic logarithmic formulas, the applicant could calculate the inside surface area of the light bulb which would allow him to determine the total volume of the glass bulb. This approach would take an experienced engineering applicant approximately twenty minutes to solve the answer.

The second method an applicant could use to find the answer was to remove the brass base from the bulb and then fill the bulb with water.   Once the bulb was filled with water, its contents could easily be poured into a measuring cup or laboratory beaker mug to determine the exact amount of water it could hold.   This method generally took less than two minutes.

Nearly all the engineers who used the first method to calculate the volume of water a light bulb could hold were politely thanked for their time and sent on their way. However, the applicants who used the second method were greeted warmly by Mr. Edison who asked, "When can you start?"

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

The Boulder in the Road

Once upon a time there was a King who controlled a large kingdom.  One night when it was very dark, he had a large boulder placed in the center of one of the major roadways.  The King awoke early the next morning and hid in the trees alongside the road.  He wanted to watch what people would do when they came upon the large rock blocking their path.

The first to come down the road were the wealthy merchants and courtiers of the King's court who were going to work.  When they saw the large rock blocking their path, they all  stopped to complain loudly but did nothing to move the rock.

They blamed the King for not taking care of the roads for which they all paid taxes to have maintained. They felt the King was negligent in not keeping the roads clear.  When they were done complaining, they walked around the boulder and went on their way.

An hour passed and along came a peasant carrying a large basket of vegetables he was taking to the to market to sell. When he approached the boulder, he laid down his basket and tried desperately to move the large rock out of the way.  Unable to move the stone, he walked into the woods and found a large piece of wood which he could use as a lever.  After much straining, he and his lever succeeded in rolling the boulder out of the way and to the side of the road. 

When he turned to pick up his basket of vegetables, he noticed a beautiful silk purse lying in the center of the road where the boulder had been. Upon opening the purse, he saw 50 gold coins and a handwritten note signed by the King.   T
he King's note indicated the 50 gold coins were a reward for the person or persons who removed the boulder from the roadway.

It was the King's hope to teach his subjects a valuable lesson.  Those who do something good for the community where they live, such as removing obstacles or improving the conditions for others, are always rewarded for their efforts in the end.