Thursday, December 29, 2005

How would you arrange 31 stars?

This United States flag carries 31 stars in a pattern from about 1849. The flag is on display in Columbia, CA, at the historical park there. The park recreates the time of the California Goldrush and the original 49ers. Today, it is simple to arrange 50 stars, one per state, into a regular pattern that is pleasing to the eye. Then, then problem was how to arrange 31 stars in a pleasing pattern. When I first saw this flag, it was quite a surprise because it wasn't showing the 50 stars I expect from modern flags. Then I thought the flag was rather odd looking because of the stunted lines of stars. Now I wonder if this is the best they could do with 31 stars. Can you do better?

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