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Geostatistics and the 500-mile Email Problem

In the mid-1990s, a Statistics professor at UNC reported an IT problem...

In the mid-1990s, a Statistics professor at UNC reported an IT problem: he couldn't send email more than 500 miles away.

He'd had geostatisticians plot the sites where emails could be sent successfully and where they bounced, and found they described a circle a radius slightly over 500 miles. Some sites within the circle could sporadically receive email, but definitely none outside them.



The solution to the problem, which involves old sendmail.cf formats and the speed of light, is well worth a read.

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By David Smith

David Smith is Vice President of Marketing and Community at Revolution Analytics. He has a long history with the R and statistics communities. After graduating with a degree in Statistics from the University of Adelaide, South Australia, he spent four years researching statistical methodology at Lancaster University in the United Kingdom, where he also developed a number of packages for the S-PLUS statistical modeling environment. He continued his association with S-PLUS at Insightful (now TIBCO Spotfire) overseeing the product management of S-PLUS and other statistical and data mining products.<

David smith is the co-author (with Bill Venables) of the popular tutorial manual, An Introduction to R, and one of the originating developers of the ESS: Emacs Speaks Statistics project. Today, he leads marketing for REvolution R, supports R communities worldwide, and is responsible for the Revolutions blog. Prior to joining Revolution Analytics, he served as vice president of product management at Zynchros, Inc. Follow him on twitter at @RevoDavid

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