In a three dimensional location, point D has two circles of radius R and R' at an angle N to each other (D is the centerpoint). Using a tangent of both circles that is furthest away from point D as a zero angle, write a function for the distance of between any two points. (one on each circle)

Sorry if this is hard to visualize. I had to make a paper model myself.
Please ask clarification questions.

P.S. I created this in math while messing around on periodic functions.
P.P.S. I wasn't supposed to be doing this, but my teacher forgave me when he saw my solution.
P.P.P.S. Math is fun, but math class is incredibly boring.

Originally posted by Codfish Another one off the top of my head!

In a three dimensional location, point D has two circles of radius R and R' at an angle N to each other (D is the centerpoint). Using a tangent of both circles that is furthest away from point D as a zero angle, write a function for the distance of between any two points. (one on each circle)

Sorry if this is hard ...[text shortened]... orgave me when he saw my solution.
P.P.P.S. Math is fun, but math class is incredibly boring.

I am only familiar with tangents that are in the same plane as the circle. Since the two circles are not coplanar, they cannot share a tangent. Right?

Originally posted by AThousandYoung I am only familiar with tangents that are in the same plane as the circle. Since the two circles are not coplanar, they cannot share a tangent. Right?

Maybe.

I guess I meant to say that there is a line that touches one point of both circles.

Originally posted by AThousandYoung Where would the vertex of the zero angle be? Why is "zero angle" relevant?

I guess I don't really understand the question.

Then I guess I'll reformat the question. In an analytic format.

Suppose point D is the origin and the radii are still R and R'. Solve for the distance between any two points on these circles. (Still one point on each)

Originally posted by Codfish Then I guess I'll reformat the question. In an analytic format.

Suppose point D is the origin and the radii are still R and R'. Solve for the distance between any two points on these circles. (Still one point on each)

That's stated simply enough. I'll work on it. Sounds hard though.

I assume both points are on the edge of its circle. I'll call them A and B.

Form triangle ABD. You have the length of 2 edges of ABD, namely R and R'. Now if you have the angle between AD and AB (is not necessarily N !), you'll find distance(AB) by using cos rule.. You can find the angle if you have coordinates of A, D, and B. But then, if you have these coordinates, you can just use Euclid distance formula and all the things about the circles are irrelevant... Correct me if I'm wrong.