Gryphon 1962

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Transcript of Gryphon 1962



    Graerne Carroll Editor

    Don Brown Sub -Editor Dan Cogan A rt Ed it or John Murray Spo rts Edit or Ray Beebe Sue Guest Bev. Long

    Cover Design Ron Cameron .

  • i


    .\Ir. A . E . Lambert .


    Melbourne ha s rec en tly had a ra re experi enceth e failure of a maj or engineering st ructure. There a rc lessons to be learnt fro m a cons id era tion of this eve nt. The re are techn ica I lessons, of course, but I am con ce rn ed here with broader questi on s.

    In th e first place, th e failure em p hasises the he avy resp ons ibil ity wh ich rests on th ose who carry out the d esign and cons t ru cti on of large works . The very ra r ity of failure may lead us to tak e fo r g ra nt ed th e high sta ndards o f pro fessional corn petence and rel ia bi lity which h a ve been ach ieved .

    Another important lesson is th at mathematical analysis and established th eory alone a re not su fficien t for the solu t ion of engineering problems. We are still awaiting the findings of th e Ro yal Co m rn lssion on the exac t causes of failure o f the King Street Bridge, but it wi ll be surp ris in g if the mathematical analysis wa s at fault. Mathematics is a powerful a id in dete rm ining rhe consequences which follow from gi ven hypotheses; but establishment of valid h ypotheses is th e core or the engi neer's problem, and it demands the exercise o f all his skill and judgem ent. It is not alw a ys el!sy fo r a student to appreciate this s itu a t ion full y, as th e bulk of th e t ime in hi s academic training must be devoted to g iving h im an understanding of basi c theory and mathematical anal ysis. These are essen tial tools, but th ey must be a p p l ied with enginee ring judgement devel oped through years of experi ence,

    Next, I want to consider the question of the attitude we should ad opt if the R oyal Commission find s tha t an h on est e r ror has been made by people wh o were conscientiously ca rrying out their du ti es.

    Should we be just a l ittle please d at the ir di sco m fitu re? Should we be wise after the event and feel that we should n ever have made sim ila r mi stakes in sim ila r circumstances?

    Or shou ld we feel gen ui ne sym pa thy fo r men who ha ve carried O Ul difficult tasks to th e best o f thei r abi lity bu t h ave made some errors of judgement?

    Sho u ld we, in all hu mil ity. realize tha t we our selves sha ll be ex t rem ely fortuna te if we go t h rough o ur car eers wit hou t m aking any serious m ista kes. or if a ll o ur m ista kes are corrected by ou r co llea gues before being translated in to a ction ?

    I lea ve you to ans we r th ese queslion s, bUI hasten to add that I am n ot su ggest lllg that we sho u ld condone a ny deliberate malp racti ce . o r negli gence, or gross incompetence, if rh e Com m issio n sho u ld find th at this has occu rred .

    As I write this, th e Royal Commission ha s not yet mad e its in vestigation, but pape rs a nd articles p ubl ished before the failure mak e it clear that those responsib le kn ew th at a p rob lem ex iste d a nd be lieved th at th ey h ad found a solut ion. In spite of th e difficu lt ies, t hey were willing to att empt so meth ing new . All progress depends upon such enterprise, an d even carefu l p rel iminary investigation will not a lways en sure accurate pred ict ion of wh at will happen in the field. Let us be proud that most o f our progress is ach ieved withou t di sast er , a nd let us not place 10 0 much emphasis o n a bso lu te sa fe ty if it must be at th e cost of stag n a t ion .

    Let us, th en, await th e find ings of the Ro yal Co m miss ion with a gen u ine a nd humble desire 10 learn all we ca n from past mistakes a nd a d et erminat ion 10 a pp ly th is and other lesson s in an effort to avoid making mistakes ourselves in any task s that may be entrusted to us in th e future .

    And let us not be too severe in condemnation of a ny erro r of judgement that may have OCCUlTed in spite o f serious attempts to make the best use of modem techniques rather than follow old methods too slavishly.

    " W I> anti iii high I upon I

    n u ri rea ms or hea had Ol ou r up lems t we ha hi sto ry

    It a young acco un occasio at a s time, ~ 10 Dip procce mod est o r eacl a nd P' an d p forever

    T he you a field . I section magazi disc ard futu re with a this m cu p bo z nosralg l ime \' was w

  • for m en e bes t ol of judge-

    we o ur, th rough mistak es, o ur coI

    l? ur hasten e sho u ld eglige nce, n sho uld

    ha s not d articles lear that isted and

    In spite attcmp l

    pon such inv cstiga licti on o f be proud

    without em p hasis e cost of

    he Royal desire to

    I a deterns in an es in an y future.

    Ination of b rred in ~t use of . methods

    EDITORIAL " What you have to say I will wit h patience hear,

    and find a t im e bo th me et to h ear a nd a nswe r suc h h igh things. Ti ll then , my nobl e fr iend , che w up on this ." -Sh ak espeare.

    Du rin g the com plex pr ocesses of tr ansformi ng ream s of ill egibl e scrawl inro a m agazin e wo rt hy o f bea rin g t he nam e "G ryp hon" , we ha ve o flen had occas io n [Q refer lO previou s issues to see how o u r " p redecessors" had overcome some o f th e prob lem s t hat arise. As a b y-product of our research we ha ve gai ned a co ns ide rab le in sigh t into the hi story of th e ma gazioe.

    It appear s that back in 1947 a group of eage r yo u ng chroni cle rs pr oceeded to record for po steriry account s of a ll th e ch aracters, eve nts, incide n ts, occasions, a nd achi evem ents th at co ns t iru ted life a t a sma ll T echn ical School - which was , at th at time, still nursing its first Senior Students throu gh to Diploma stan d ard . Since th en the Gr yphon has p roceed ed to ca p tu re and p reser ve, in its o wn modest fashion , some of t he echoes from rh e so unds of eac h pa ssing yea r. It cont inues to a l ter, expa nd, a nd p rogress as lh e Co llege it serves a lters, expands, a nd p rogr esses, bu t its purpose rem ains, an d will forever rema in en tirely unchanged .

    T he G ryp ho n is p roduced sole ly to p ro vid e fo r you a pe rm anent reco rd of your sojo u rn a t Ca ulfield . In it we en de avour to imbue a gene ra l crosssection o f the studen ts a nd their th ou gh ts, for this magazine is not in tended to be rea d and th en d isca rded , but rat he r to be re ad then put asi de for fut u re ref er ence - [or, l.ike win e, its va lue in cr eases with age. If, in some years hen ce, you come across this musty old mag azin e in th e back corner of a cu p board , and it manages to st ir up the sm allest no stal gic m em or y, t he n we sh all co nside r that th e t ime we spe n t beating o u r heads against th e wall

    But let 's "go on with th e show" as the o ld say ing goes, and so, w ith on ly a short pause to th an k ~\I I". Ri ch ards o f i h Englis h sta ff for h is pai nstaking an d in valuable assis ta nce , Mrs. Newcom be for the wonderfu l jo b done in typ ing a ll ou r co pies, a nd the usu al sm a ll number o f people who do th c usual eno rmo us a mo un t of work , we blowout all th e cand les o n the ca ke an d presen t you with th e Fifteenth Ann ual Edition of th e Gryp hon .

    _. .Graeme Car roll, Don Brown.

    ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS If [or some unknown reason, Mr . Richards (of

    the Eng lish Dept.) , was unable to correct your revision papers th en it is almost ce rt a in that he was correcllng, and pe rhaps even rewriting, material for this year's G rypho n. If during the exa ms YOll saw someone peek ou t from behind a stack of ga lley p roofs, th en you can bet >our bottom dollar i t was Mr. Richards. Thanks once again.

    ,\-[1". Wi shart, ou r photogr apher, is an oth er person d eserving of o u r th anks as, once aga in this year, he has gone ou t o f h is way ( 0 take exc ellen t photogr ap hs of th e college organizat ion s. Our th anks are a lso extended to Hughes and Son Pry. Ltd . for the bl ock s and to Too ron ga Press for th e p r inting. Fine job s.

    Thanks al so to the ed itor's friends, th e con tr iburors , th ose people who sa w fit to ta ke some of th e burden off our sho u ld ers . Wi lh olll you th ere would be no magazine .

    Fo r the seco nd year in succession we, the edi to rs, wis h to th ank M rs. Ne wcombe and her comm erc e gir ls (a di ffer en t lot this yea r) for volun teeri ng to type our th e ma gazin e. Thanks to th ese fa ir maiden s of room 26 wh o, under th e astut e leadership o f Mrs . Newco m be , man aged to translate th e ream s of ill eg ib le manuscripts in to reada ble and

    was well Justifi ed . logical English .



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