A 1 metre cube has one face on the ground and one face against a
wall. A 4 metre ladder leans against the wall and just touches the
cube. How high is the top of the ladder above the ground?
In this problem we are faced with an apparently easy area problem,
but it has gone horribly wrong! What happened?
Straight lines are drawn from each corner of a square to the mid
points of the opposite sides. Express the area of the octagon that
is formed at the centre as a fraction of the area of the square.
Vertical velocity means that the sideways speed doesn't count at
all, just the rate at which height is lost.