Identification of Wires in a Cable
Rigge, William F., S.J.
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First Paragraph: For telephone men and others who are accustomed to handle cables with hundreds of wires in them, their identification is mere child’s play, as it is done by the color or character of its insulation, its position, or one or more very obvious marks. For these the following problem, or rather mathematical study, has no practical meaning. But for one who is all alone, without any one to help him, who can use only one kind of wire, and who wishes to string a dozen or more in a cable, the mathematical aspect of his work may do much to relieve its mechanical and physical labor. This was the writer’s condition many years ago when he put in a private telephone system for 12 stations, each of which could call any other directly. There were therefore 14 wires in the cable, one for each station and two for the battery, and this cable ran to each station. On account of the number of these stations and their distance apart, frequent walking from one to another was foreseen to be fatiguing, so that the first condition in the identification of the wires was that the number of trips between stations was to be a minimum.