I apologize for responding to your reply
on the list. I assumed that you had copied me separately on a reply that you
sent to the list. And yes, I know what I said about assuming!An unfortunate effect of being in digest
mode. Again, my apologies.
I don’t doubt your technical
competence, nor your skills as an author. What I have
a problem with is the vehicle you used to air your concerns. You’ve
obviously spent time going through these documents and noted technical and typographical
errors. Why not send them to the SSEC? I don’t see any constructive
result that comes from sending them to the list.
Thank you for taking back your generalization
on Steel Tips. That is the other thing that bothered me, as I have found them
to be very useful and did not want the list to get a different impression. I
hope that you’ll send the errors that you’ve noted below to the
SSEC as well.
I would like comment on “Use of Deep
Columns in Special Moment Resisting Frames". I think that you’ve missed the
importance of this article. I don’t think that it was intended to bash
someone else’s research, rather to identify the limits of applicability
of that research. This article points out that SAC limited the allowable depth
of moment frame columns to 14” nominal based on a limited number of tests
which showed undesirable behavior when deeper columns were used. There was a
need to address this because the use of deeper columns is an effective way to
limit drift in moment frames. The idea was that this research did not reflect
the beneficial restraint that the slab provides in a composite steel frame –concrete
slab system. The importance of this article is that is provides research and
documentation that designers can use as part of their justification for the use
of deeper columns in special moment frames. As far as writing style and grammar go, you may be correct. To be honest, if I can
understand the intent, I usually don’t remember those aspects of an
Again, I’m sure that there are
errors can be found in most technical documents. I guess we just disagree on
how they are most effectively resolved.
-----Original Message----- From: GSKWY(--nospam--at)aol.com
[mailto:GSKWY(--nospam--at)aol.com] Sent:Tuesday, December 16, 2003 To:seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org; HEATH
MITCHELL; brettm(--nospam--at)herricksteel.com Subject: Making a difference
Well, since an e-mail I sent
privately was posted to the list, I guess I will elaborate.
With respect to my comments on the SSEC Steel Tips, when I made the comments, I
had not read a lot of them. I had only read some of the more recent ones.
Since I didn't think the ones I read were very good, I didn't look
at some of the others.
Having looked at some of the others, there are some that appear to be
very good. In particular, one by Popov and one on weld material
compatability that has very cute illustrations. There is one on roofs that
seems to be mostly a marketing piece, but it also has some good information.
I take back my generalization on the Steel Tip articles.
The ones I had read, which caused me to make the comments, were "Seismic
Design of Steel Column-Tree Moment Resisting Frames", "Use of
Deep Columns in Special Moment Resisting Frames", "Notes on Design of
Steel Parking Structures Including Seismic Effects" and two on shear
With respect to the document "Use of Deep Columns in Special Moment
Resisting Frames", this appeared to be nothing more than somebody
taking the opportunity to bash someone else's work. And taking 41 pages to
do so, by repeating the same things over and over. It was
also very badly written.
With respect to the one on steel column-trees, there was a lot of repetition.
Page 8: "By using semi-rigid connections, stiffness, strength,
ductility and energy capacity can be easily manipulated and adjusted to reduce
seismic forces, to limit displacements to acceptable levels and to improve
Page 9 (same section, four sentences later): "In addition, the
use of semi-rigid connections can increase damping, elongate the period of
vibration, reduce stiffness to a desirable level and can result in a reduction
of seismic forces and displacements."
This was confusing and made the document hard to follow. There were also
a number of sentences that did not seem to make sense. The sentences
seemed to have missing or extra words, so it was not entirely clear what was
Page 7: "Therefore, if length of girder stub is less than 15% of the
span, the paramaters gamma and m in above equations are very close and
approximately can be assumed to be the same."
I think the statement itself is true, but I don't think the
"therefore" is correct, based on what the sentence follows. But
I am not sure. It is quibbling to note that the word
"approximately" was not necessary, but the number of
unnecessary and/or misused words contributed to problems with trying to
understand the material.
With respect to the document "Notes on Design of Steel Parking
Structures Including Seismic Effects", I think documents like this
are a disservice to the engineering community. I had some months ago
picked out one sentence and discussed it as very bad engineering writing.
There were some that saw nothing wrong with that sentence, which is fine,
I happen to be pretty critical in that respect.
But every page has several grammatical errors, which is probably more than what
most people would consider as acceptable. Errors and typos do happen, but
even cursory review should pick up most of the subject-verb agreement errors.
I did not specifically discuss any of the information presented. And a
lot of the information presented is incorrect, which I don't think is
appropriate for a document being represented as educational.
The authors really did not seem to have any understanding of what
they were writing.
For example, the statement (page 22):
"Sealers are liquids that are applied to the concrete surface for the
purpose of either curing or resisting water penetration."
Note: Something which is just used for
curing is called a curing compound, not a sealer.
There are a number of commercial products that do both curing and sealing (aka
cure 'n seals) but this is not what the document says. I would also note
that I don't think I have ever seen a cure 'n seal product used in a parking
garage, except perhaps in a lobby area.
I believe engineers should be accountable for what they write, just as
they should be accountable for what they design. The organizations that publish
the documents should also be accountable.