We had a number of three way switches in our house that didn't work when we moved in. In fact, not one worked right. Whomever wired the house back in 1986 either didn't care or didn't know how to hook them up correctly. If you're not an electrician, or are not familiar with their standardized technical terms, the troubleshooting guides available might be confusing or useless. The information that comes with the switches seems to be the same. After pondering this issue for a few minutes the answer presented itself. 1. The "common" wire is either the load (to the light) or the hot wire (from the breaker box). 2. A "traveler" wire is just a wire that only connects to the switch. It doesn't lead to the load or the breaker box. To identify the "common" wires, the simplest method is to disconnect the switches and use a voltage detector pen (such as a Fluke VoltAlert Non-Contact Voltage Tester ) to find the hot wire. Once the hot wire
I recently went through the PreCheck line at an airport and instead of the usual thirty second security screening, they singled me out because they wanted to check my nuts. The officer implied they exceeded tolerance and wanted to check my "bag". Naturally, I complied like any citizen would and when the officer was satisfied that my nuts, although excessive, were no threat to the flying safety of the general public, he left me with my nuts on the examination table without so much as a goodbye.
In 2005, I wrote one of my first custom mapping projects using the recently released Google Maps API. It was a fairly crude map that used the Census Tiger ZCTA' s (Zip Code Tabulation Area) to display a representation of a Zip Code area. Matt Cutts, at the time, a major player at Google in search, wrote a blog post called "Fun with Zip Codes" that caused my site to get an average of 70,000 unique visitors a day for about a week. The traffic that Matt's blog post caused made me consider that there could be a market for this type of site so I looked deeper into the issue and learned a number of interesting things. The most important thing I learned was that Zip Codes are not areas. They are delivery routes. The USPS draws these delivery routes based on the efficient delivery of mail and nothing else. They can cross city, county and even state lines if it means the mail gets delivered efficiently. Not every address in the US has a Zip Code. This is not obvious for
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