Tired an a little bit hungover today I decided to play some more with the concept of constructing a multiple lengths with a compass and as few operations as possible; the problem I sketched yesterday in: https://seriouscephalopod.wordpress.com/2015/04/03/o/
Nothing interesting really except firstly I realized I had missed that there was a 3-circle construction of ‘7’ while I had originally displayed a 4-circle construction in the original post and I suppose I should correct myself plus I thought it was kind of cute.
Besides for that i suppose I have tried to gather some more empirical data regardning these constructions. I tried to write a program to runt through all simpler construction as if in a tree diagram with a new node added in every step but not having figured out a good cutoff condition I got stuck with too many ‘stupid constructions’ since I counted them all and the data set grew to quickly in relation to the data I got so I decided to scrap the algorithmic approach before I’ve figured the system better.
So I just tried to find constructions by hand and though my ‘minimas’ are only upper limits than unquestionable minimas as a result but here are the first minimal construction numbers which feel somewhat certain at least.
At least in the beginning it has turned out that the powers of 2: 4,8,16 have formed good proto-constructions from which I can add just one circle to get to a nearby number so you can see that the number of circles necessary increases as you pass 4, 8, and 16. This might just be a quirk of the fact that these numbers are still pretty close to eachother or it is something fundamental. Nevertheless I can as the following question for further inquiry:
Question 2: For some is there a number such that such that the minimal number of circles necessary to construct is less than ()?
I suspect there is but we’ll see… I was however able to find a counterexample to Question 1 in the previous post.
Question 1: Is the inequality
in fact an equality or what is the smallest such that it is a strict inequality?
That is as there better constructions than just reusing the constructions for it’s factors. The counterexample I found was 15 = 3 * 5 which using first the 3-step construction for 5 and then multiplying that by 3 using 2-circles takes a total of 5 circles as seen below
However using first the 3-step construction of 8 and then adding one more circle you can get to 15.
So the inequality was not an equality. That’s nice because on one hand it would have been a scarily powerful result had it been true but this way (it being not) I don’t have to think about it anymore.