kevan + maths   91

Stephen Wolfram, Introduction to "A New Kind of Science"
"Well, in the actual [snail] shell, the pattern is laid down by a line of pigment-producing cells on the growing edge of the shell. And it seems that what happens can be captured rather well by a cellular automaton rule."
emergence  maths  snails 
8 weeks ago by kevan
How many colours would you need to make London’s bus network more comprehensible? | CityMetric
"The first thing our colour system lets you do is dump bus numbers above 100 and use colours as a replacement for the first digit."
transport  colour  london  maths 
10 weeks ago by kevan
A bot crawled thousands of studies looking for simple math errors. The results are concerning. - Vox
"...they’re 'typos,' errors in transferring data from one program to another, she says. But because academic journals are more likely to publish significant results, these erroneous findings may be more likely to find themselves in the published literature."
maths  mutation  science  software 
november 2016 by kevan
What are the odds of one vote changing the US presidential election? - 80,000 Hours
"[A] vote with a 1 in 10 million chance of changing the election outcome would be worth $25,000 to your fellow citizens just through its effects on the likelihood of a nuclear war."
politics  maths 
november 2016 by kevan
Paris car ban: Pollution forces authorities to halt even-numbered plates
"City mayor Anne Hidalgo had asked authorities to prevent one in every two cars from taking to the capital’s streets and make all public transport temporarily free in a bid to drive down pollution."
paris  pollution  transport  maths 
march 2015 by kevan
Dictionary of Numbers, Putting numbers in human terms.
"Dictionary of Numbers searches through the page for numbers it can understand, and when it finds one, adds an inline explanation for that number in human terms."
maths  language  via:danielle 
may 2013 by kevan
Sicherman dice - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
"Crazy dice is a standard mathematical problem or puzzle in elementary combinatorics, involving a re-labeling of the faces of a pair of six-sided dice to reproduce the same frequency of sums as the standard labeling."
dice  maths 
january 2013 by kevan
Moving sofa problem - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
"The problem is a two-dimensional idealisation of real-life furniture moving problems, and asks for the rigid two-dimensional shape of largest area A that can be maneuvered through an L-shaped planar region with legs of unit width. The area A thus obtained is referred to as the sofa constant."
furniture  maths 
july 2012 by kevan
Statistics and Scrabble, Together At Last - A.C. Thomas, Scientist
"One goal of this was to figure out how much of the variance in score comes from the tile order and how much comes from the board, given that a tile order would be expected. It turns out to be about half-bag, half-board. [...] The blank is worth about 30 points to a good player. [...] The Q is a burden to whichever player receives it, effectively serving as a 5 point penalty."
games  scrabble  maths  via:mattgreen 
january 2012 by kevan
Loaded Dice: Ratings
Leonard analyses BGG ratings. "A game with a 7.5 rating sounds pretty good, but as you can see from this table, it's actually really good: in the top ten percent of games. Similarly, a game with a 4.75 rating sounds kind of bad, but it's actually really bad: in the bottom twenty-five percent."
games  board  maths 
august 2011 by kevan
Deaths per TWH by energy source
"The fifty actual deaths from [solar panel] roof installation accidents for 1.5 million roof installations is equal to the actual deaths experienced so far from Chernobyl."
electricity  death  maths  via:amuchmoreexotic 
march 2011 by kevan
Cracking the Scratch Lottery Code | Magazine
"Srivastava’s startling insight was that he could separate the winning tickets from the losing tickets by looking at the number of times each of the digits occurred on the [unscratched] tic-tac-toe boards."
money  maths  via:waxy 
february 2011 by kevan
BoardGameGeek rating correlation
"Type a BGG username in each box to calculate the correlation between the ratings of the two users. Type a BGG username in the first box and leave the second box empty to match that user against everybody in the cache."
games  board  maths 
january 2011 by kevan
Wolfenstein 1-D
"Now, after decades of development, Wolfenstein 3-D has been converted to breathtaking, epoch-making 1-D. You can now play the game in a single, dazzling one-pixel line."
games  maths 
january 2011 by kevan
Frankie Peanuts and Coercive Logic
Logically exploiting an answer-yes-or-no Magic card (albeit from the joke Unhinged expansion). "Yes or no: You will do the actions in exactly 1 of the two following groups of actions: The first group is answering ‘no.’ The second group is forfeiting this turn but first giving me one rare of my choice from your deck."
games  mtg  maths 
january 2010 by kevan
TrueAchievements - Xbox 360 Achievement Tracking
Adjusting the values of Xbox 360 achievement scores, based on the number of players who actually managed to achieve them. "The 5 points for pressing the Start button in The Simpsons Game are worth exactly the same as the 5 points for completing 10 side missions in Just Cause. It's an outrage." I'm up 3,000.
games  maths 
february 2009 by kevan
D-Total™ by Dr. A. F. Simkin - Seventeen Dice in One
"At 7 o’clock (bottom left) there may be a number (1-7) between the square and diamond shapes. If not, re-roll to get the d7 result." Photo at tinyurl.com/dtotal
dice  maths  via:rwhe 
january 2009 by kevan
Project Euler
"Project Euler is a series of challenging mathematical/computer programming problems that will require more than just mathematical insights to solve. Although mathematics will help you arrive at elegant and efficient methods, the use of a computer and programming skills will be required to solve most problems."
maths  programming  puzzles 
august 2008 by kevan
'Cool Cash' card confusion - News - Manchester Evening News
"A lottery scratchcard has been withdrawn from sale by Camelot - because players couldn't understand it." [...] "The concept of comparing negative numbers proved too difficult for some [and] Camelot received dozens of complaints on the first day."
money  maths  random  education  via:tim 
november 2007 by kevan
LD50 - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
"In toxicology, the LD50 (abbreviation for 'Lethal Dose, 50%') or median lethal dose of a toxic substance or radiation is the dose required to kill half the members of a tested population."
poison  maths  science 
july 2007 by kevan
Raspberry Debacle » Blog Archive » A Sketch Towards a Taxonomy of Meta-Desserts
"Dessertoms are not infinitely stable: many, such as 'crepe' and 'sweet bread', are actually very unstable, and can easily turn into a dessert that would be horrible."
food  meta  maths  via:holly 
june 2007 by kevan
flatlandproject.com
"In this semi-extreme performance, 6 curious artists strip away not only most of modern life's familiar structures, but an entire dimension: they have elected to inhabit a structure that effectively forces them to live in 2 dimensions."
art  architecture  maths  via:zarba 
may 2007 by kevan
badscience » Maths Professor Divides By Zero, Say BBC
"Schoolchildren in Caversham have become the first in the country to learn about a new number - ‘nullity’ - which solves maths problems neither Newton nor Pythagoras could conquer."
maths  lunacy  education  programming  pointless 
december 2006 by kevan
Swivel - Home
An infovorous 'YouTube for data', "[transforming] a lonely grid of numbers and letters into hundreds - sometimes thousands - of graphs that can be explored and compared with any other public data in Swivel."
maths  web 
december 2006 by kevan
Vampires a Mathematical Impossibility, Scientist Says - Yahoo! News
"If the first vampire came into existence that day and bit one person a month, there would have been two vampires by Feb 1, 1600. [...] In just two-and-a-half years the original human population would all have become vampires with nobody left to feed on."
monsters  maths 
november 2006 by kevan
news @ nature.com - Gazing into the middle distance improves your concentration.
Compared to 'staring at a human face'. "We are so distracted by the barrage of emotional information transmitted in faces that it stops us from thinking clearly."
brains  faces  psychology  maths  via:mindhacks 
september 2006 by kevan
Guardian Unlimited | How a statistical formula won the war
"The statisticians believed that the Germans [had] logically numbered their tanks in the order in which they were produced. It was enough to enable them to make an estimate of the total number of tanks that had been produced up to any given moment."
war  maths  history  via:qwghlm 
july 2006 by kevan
New World Notes: -- And He Rezzed A Crooked House
A tesseract-shaped house in Second Life, with video clips. "When you step into a room, the other rooms cluster around it so that they're always connected together the right way."
mmorpgs  architecture  illusions  maths 
july 2006 by kevan
news @ nature.com - Van Gogh painted perfect turbulence
"A mathematical analysis of his works reveals that the stormy patterns in many of his paintings are uncannily like real turbulence, as seen in swirling water or the air from a jet engine."
art  maths  science 
july 2006 by kevan
Small World: Uncovering Nature's Hidden Networks - Mark Buchanan
Gripping introduction into network theory, looking at six-degrees-of-separation and social network patterns and explaining them in counter-intuitive terms that quickly become crashingly obvious. Some good worldview-shifting.
booklog  science  society  maths  coincidences 
july 2006 by kevan
Guardian Unlimited | Weekend | Call that risky?
"Hitting a rather macabre note, [energy production] risk is measured in deaths per terawatt year. 'By far the most dangerous is hydro. When a hydro dam goes in a populated area, it can kill 35,000 people in 40 minutes.'"
terrorism  electricity  death  water  maths  future  pestilence  apocalypse 
april 2006 by kevan
Schneier on Security: Data Mining for Terrorists
"This unrealistically-accurate system will generate one billion false alarms for every real terrorist plot it uncovers. Every [day], the police will have to investigate 27 million potential plots in order to find the one real terrorist plot per month."
terrorism  surveillance  maths 
march 2006 by kevan
The Physics of Friendship
"After a collision, a particle moves in a different direction with an updated velocity, just as how an individual's chance of meeting a new person depends on their most recent acquaintances." Not sure how many dimensions they're working in.
society  maths  simulation 
march 2006 by kevan
news @ nature.com - Fractals and art
"[The] fractal dimension of Pollock's works [increases] through the years as the artist refined his technique. It seems that Pollock was honing his ability to generate fractals a full quarter century before fractal geometry was formally described."
art  maths  via:collision 
february 2006 by kevan
CombinationLock.com - number puzzle - number game
Simple algebraic puzzle game where you deduce a padlock combination from a few clues; nice that the clues are infinitely autogenerated, although you occasionally get absurdly easy ones.
puzzles  maths  via:mcios 
february 2006 by kevan
How many atoms of Jesus you eat every day@Everything2.com
"Interestingly, but somewhat off topic, transubstantiation means that eventually the earth's entire biomass will be made out of Jesus."
religion  food  maths 
december 2005 by kevan
WSJ.com - The Numbers Guy - How to Split a Shared Cab Ride?
Conflicting mathematical approaches to splitting a shared cab ride with different drop-off points. "With the numbers I've chosen, this method yields the highly unlikely scenario that B pays $3, C pays $7 and A makes a profit of $1 for his troubles."
money  transport  maths 
december 2005 by kevan
NumberSpiral.com
Finding vague prime-number patterns. "Number spirals are very simple. To make one, we just write the non-negative integers on a ribbon and roll it up with zero at the center."
maths 
november 2005 by kevan
The Infinite Book - John D Barrow
"Is their appearance a sign of success or failure?" The spiritual, psychological and mathematical significance of infinities. More trite than profound, but putting its facts across well.
booklog  maths  religion  psychology  history 
november 2005 by kevan
Jerk : Built with Processing
Ben was wondering how a Thrust game would feel if you controlled "jerk" (acceleration per time) instead of acceleration, so I threw this together. It's quite odd.
simulation  maths  creations 
november 2005 by kevan
Wikipedia: Chronogram
"ChrIstVs DuX ergo trIVMphVs ('Christ the Leader, therefore triumphant'), on a coin struck by Gustavus Adolphus in 1627, gives MDCXVVVII or 1627."
maths  time  history  money 
november 2005 by kevan
idiolect.org.uk: The Happiness Maths
Brilliant extrapolation of a basic happiness/experience equation. "The total happiness is the same, but the arrangement of unpleasant experience before positive makes the peak happiness derived greater. This is why we go camping, I suspect."
maths  depression  psychology 
june 2005 by kevan
Guardian Unlimited | Can you digit?
Tim Dowling being exasperated by Sudoku. "He suggests one might even colour-code one's jottings, but I think that would be weird, or cheating, or both."
maths  puzzles  via:lmg 
may 2005 by kevan
Discover: Quantum honeybees - research on honeybee behavior
Slightly loony extrapolation: "[Shipman] suspects that the bees are somehow sensitive to what's going on in the quantum world of quarks, that quantum mechanics is as important to their perception of the world as sight, sound, and smell."
bees  maths  science 
may 2005 by kevan
Scientific American: Performance without Anxiety
Stereotype threat: "When experimenters told white golfers that the quality of their game would reflect 'natural athletic ability' instead of their strategic intellectual prowess, their performance was much worse than that of black players."
psychology  sport  maths  education  via:mindhacks 
may 2005 by kevan
Griddlers Net
Nonogram puzzles, another Japanese non-crossword genre - a grid where each row and column is labelled with the sizes of its pixel clumps, leaving the solver to build up the hidden picture.
puzzles  japan  maths 
april 2005 by kevan
Wikipedia: Sudoku
Grid-filling logic puzzle which is apparently in a few UK newspapers these days, although I'd never heard of it until recently. Invented in America and given popularity and a better name in Japan, where crosswords don't work.
puzzles  maths  japan  crosswords 
april 2005 by kevan
Edge: The Mathematics of Love: A Talk with John Gottman
"We are no less social than bees, and Von Frisch discovered the language of bees by going right to the hive and watching them dance. So we will discover the human dance."
love  science  maths  bees  psychology  sex  via:yoz 
april 2005 by kevan
Stanford Humanities Laboratory: Counting Crowds
"Reporters measured sidewalks and used city maps to calculate that that route could hold exactly 141,436 people. If those standing on side streets and leaning out of office windows were included in the count, participants could number up to 500,000."
crowds  maths  science 
april 2005 by kevan
New York Times: The Odds of That
"Janet Shoemaker [...] heard the tales and points out that her organization alone has 41,000 members, meaning that the deaths of 11 worldwide, most of whom were not technically microbiologists at all, is not statistically surprising."
death  science  maths  coincidences 
april 2005 by kevan
The Fair Division Calculator version 3.0
Java applet which can "help you determine how to divide among n people: a desirable object (such as a cake), an undesirable object (such as a set of chores), or a set of indivisible objects (rooms, desirable) with payments (rent, undesirable)."
maths  food 
april 2005 by kevan
Science News Online - Applying the math of cake cutting to conflict resolution
Mining rights and divorce settlements. "The country seeking to mine would divide that area into two portions. An independent agency representing the developing countries would then choose one of the two tracts, reserving it for future use."
law  maths  love  money  food 
april 2005 by kevan
Guardian Unlimited | Life lessons
Scientists list things that we should all understand, or that we should buy their books about. "Science is not a catalogue of facts, but a search for new mysteries. Science increases the store of wonder and mystery in the world; it does not erode it."
science  education  evolution  maths  memetics 
april 2005 by kevan
Fractal Food
Wonderful photos of fractal Romanesco brocolli, and, er, how to cook it. "Break off the 'level 1' spirals [...], then steam them for between 15-25 minutes."
food  maths  photos 
march 2005 by kevan
RedNova News - Can This Black Box See Into the Future?
Burbling random-number generators that suddenly register "huge deviations from the norm" during (or slightly before) significant world events. Doubtful.
random  future  technology  lunacy  maths  mysteries 
february 2005 by kevan
Relative Value of Chess Pieces and Principles of Chess Play
"Taking the pawn as the unit, the Knight is worth 3.05; the Bishop 3.50; the Rook 5.48; and the Queen 9.94."
chess  board  games  maths 
january 2005 by kevan
Daily Mail online | BBC to show Opera despite 5,500 complaints
Brilliant opera-chorus-swearing logic from the Mail: "The total number of obscenities [3,168] is calculated by multiplying the number of swear-words by the number of people singing them."
lunacy  music  television  theatre  maths 
january 2005 by kevan
LEGO Logic Gates
Insane, bulky, mechanical cog-and-beam logic gates.
lego  maths  programming 
december 2004 by kevan
Medieval Demographics Made Easy
"To find the number of, say, inns in a city, divide the population of the city by the SV value for inns (2,000). For a village of 400 people, this reveals only 20% of an inn! This means that there is a 20% chance of there being one at all."
cities  history  maths  roleplaying  society 
december 2004 by kevan
Mathematical Notation: Past and Future
"I'm told that Russell could actually be seen sometimes wheeling wheelbarrows full of lead type over to the Cambridge University Press so his books could be appropriately typeset."
fonts  history  language  maths 
november 2004 by kevan
"End of the World" predictions in our near future
Apocalypse watch. We survived October the 17th (a date computed from size of Noah's Ark) and should be okay until 2006, if we're not hit by an asteroid this winter.
apocalypse  future  lunacy  maths  religion 
november 2004 by kevan
New Scientist: Mathematical "truth serum" promotes honesty
"The method relies on asking questions in pairs and analysing the relationship between the answers in a so-called Bayesian approach."
brains  lies  maths  psychology 
october 2004 by kevan
The Straight Dope: Which will keep you drier, running through the rain or walking?
"If we ignore aerodynamic effects, we can show mathematically (but won't) that while you'll collect many fewer head drops running rather than walking, you'll get exactly the same number of chest drops, regardless of the speed at which you travel."
maths  walking  weather 
september 2004 by kevan
Spurious Correlations
Some excellent examples. "Because no infant has ever conducted an orchestra, the data from infant mortalities should be excluded from the comparison standard."
cheating  illusions  maths 
september 2004 by kevan
Mathematics, marriage and finding somewhere to eat
Optimal stopping problem: reject the first 37% of candidates and use the gained knowledge to judge the remaining 63%.
love  maths 
september 2004 by kevan
Mudd Math Fun Facts: Finding the N-th digit of Pi
If you work in base 16, you can calculate any specific digit of pi, whether or not you know the previous ones.
cheating  maths 
september 2004 by kevan
La Grande Arche Paris by von Spreckelsen
A giant hypercube in Paris, mentioned on R4 the other morning, that I'd never noticed.
architecture  design  france  maths 
september 2004 by kevan
The Hardness of the Lemmings Game (or Oh no, more NP-Completeness Proofs) [PDF]
"Here we will show that deciding whether a particular level is possible is an NP-Complete problem. However, under some restrictions then the question is decidable in polynomial time."
games  maths  filetype:pdf  media:document 
august 2004 by kevan
Researcher Links Storytelling And Mathematical Ability
"This study suggests that building strong storytelling skills early in the preschool years may be helpful in preparing children for learning mathematics when they enter school."
brains  children  education  maths 
august 2004 by kevan
A Turing Machine in Conway's Game of Life
Vast and organic-looking, with a detailed catalogue of its component parts.
emergence  maths  programming 
august 2004 by kevan
Autologlyphs
Wonderful self-referential mathematical fonts.
fonts  maths 
june 2004 by kevan
Blancmange Function
"The iterations towards the continuous function are batrachions resembling the Hofstadter-Conway 10,000-Dollar Sequence."
food  maths 
june 2004 by kevan
Telegraph | Mathematical junk
A rant against stupid "scientists discover formula for perfect X" news stories.
lunacy  maths  news 
june 2004 by kevan
Finding Lost Objects using "Numerology"
"The moment you lost the ring, however, is stored in your subconscious. [...] Concentrate on the lost object, then enter a nine-digit number in the box below."
lunacy  maths  science 
june 2004 by kevan
On-Line Encyclopedia of Integer Sequences
Enter the first few digits of a known-to-be-interesting sequence, to discover the rest.
maths 
june 2004 by kevan
Singing for your Polygon
Teaching maths through song. "With rigid hands scything horizontally in front of them, they chorused 'Straighty Straighty Straight-ee'."
children  education  maths  music 
june 2004 by kevan
pitchformula.com: music criticism as a creative tool
Statistically analysing the language of song reviews, then writing and recording two original pieces which exploit as many of the popular keywords as possible.
language  maths  mp3s  music  todo 
june 2004 by kevan
Yahoo! News - Atkins-Weary Baker Pitches 'Da Vinci Diet'
Eat lots of... bread. Bizarrely, it uses a "complicated formula" that specifically invokes the Golden Ratio (as used to "build the pyramids", says Yahoo). Perhaps you have to cut your toast into perfect rectangles.
famine  food  history  lunacy  maths 
june 2004 by kevan
Devlin's Angle: Golden Ratio Fallacies
"Numerous tests have failed to show up any one rectangle that most observers prefer."
architecture  art  history  hoaxes  maths 
june 2004 by kevan
Complexification | Gallery of Computation
Wonderful mathematical art. Must get Proce55ing again.
art  maths 
june 2004 by kevan
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