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For fun, I decided to create a sort of "intuitive" (for me, anyhow) approach to degrees and such. As I can recall, degrees are based on (the Mesopotamians?)'s base $60$ math. I've read that radians are purely arbitrary. So, I thought that a number system could be devised with smaller units.

I know this is hardly practical, but I've committed to writing something on the subject. I have defined a function map from degrees to what I call "quadrains". These are based on the quarters of a circle: $0\kappa=0^\circ;1\kappa=90^\circ;2\kappa=180^\circ;3\kappa=270^\circ;4\kappa=360^\circ=0^\circ=0\kappa$, and intermediate values defined by the aforementioned formula.

Now, I wish to define the trigonometric functions. I really only need to define the $\sin$ and $\cos$ functions, because $\tan, \cot,$ etc. can be derived from $\sin$ and $\cos$. I know that $\sin(\theta) = \frac {\text{Opposite}}{\text{Hypotenuese}}$ and that $\cos(\theta) = \frac {\text{Adjacent}}{\text{Hypotenuese}}$, but how might I define the trig functions for my system? I'd follow the example of how radians define it for theirs, but: I have no idea how they did it, either.

I am aware that $\sin$ etc. can be generalized by a Taylor Series, and, typically, I'd be O.K. with that. Now, however, I wish to give our friend Taylor a break and look for alternatives.

TL;DR Quarter-based "degree" system. Can I haz trig?

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Radians are most surely not arbitrary! One radian is the angle subtended by a circular arc whose length is one radius of the circle.

I don't believe that the ratio definitions of trigonometric functions care what the reference angle measures $($that is, since $45^\circ \equiv \pi/4\ $radians, we have $\sin(45^\circ) = \sin(\pi/4))$; just like a falling brick doesn't care if the acceleration due to gravity is given in ft/sec$^2$, or m/sec$^2$.

So yes, you can haz as much trig as you want :)

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    $\begingroup$ Gah! *misread source* degrees are arbitrary $\endgroup$ – Conor O'Brien Mar 14 '15 at 1:57
  • $\begingroup$ Now: If I read this correctly, I can haz trig (haha ;)) if my formula for conversion was $\delta$, like: $\sin(45^\circ)=\sin(\delta\left(45^\circ\right))?$ $\endgroup$ – Conor O'Brien Mar 14 '15 at 1:58
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    $\begingroup$ @ConorO'Brien Right! We have a pair of inverse conversion factors for degrees and radians: deg $\overset{\cdot\pi/180}{\longrightarrow}$ rad $\overset{\cdot180/\pi}{\longrightarrow}$ deg. Let's say that $1^\square = 90^\circ$, then you could come up with some more conversion maps (deg to quad, rad to quad, etc), and piggyback off all the trig that currently exists. $\endgroup$ – pjs36 Mar 14 '15 at 2:08
  • $\begingroup$ Cool! You've been a wonderful help! $\endgroup$ – Conor O'Brien Mar 14 '15 at 2:18
  • $\begingroup$ Check out this too. $\endgroup$ – steven gregory Apr 8 '16 at 6:05

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