I would like to thank Steve Elliott of Ride Actions Limited for helping me to gain insight into the technical aspects of roller coasters, of which little is publicly available. He was very helpful in answering my questions, and in getting me a little closer to the amusement industry.
I would like to thank Brian Lovrin, who did a lot to teach a mechanical engineer how to become a programmer. Brian's influence and expertise affected nearly every aspect of this research, from convincing me to write my program in C++, to convincing me to program my thesis in LATEX...both of which were undoubtedly wise decisions.
I would like to thank both my parents for teaching me that there is nothing I can't accomplish, and my dad for encouraging my love of roller coasters with many amusement park visits across the country. He helped make it possible for me to complete graduate school, keeping me supplied with computers (which are invaluable to a programmer) and cars (which are invaluable to a cross-country traveler).
And finally, I would like to thank Dana Morgan of Morgan Manufacturing for offering me my first engineering job in the amusement park industry. This will bring me one step closer to my long-time goal of becoming a roller coaster designer.