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  Discussion about math, puzzles, games and fun.   Useful symbols: ÷ × ½ √ ∞ ≠ ≤ ≥ ≈ ⇒ ± ∈ Δ θ ∴ ∑ ∫ • π ƒ -¹ ² ³ °

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#1 This is Cool » Square Root Photograph » 2009-03-03 05:22:39

Replies: 2

A couple of years ago, a friend sent me a photograph of a tree that had been in a cement planter for several years such that, once removed, the roots looked like a big cube.  The pun was that they were cubic root trees.  (ha ha).  I was informed this morning that it is Square Root Day, and so I've been trying to find it on the Internet.  Anyone know which photo I'm talking about?

#2 This is Cool » How to Double Your SalaryUsing an Algebraic Loophole » 2007-09-24 15:43:21

Replies: 2

Here's a fun "how to" article for anyone who is into a little math humor:


#3 Re: This is Cool » Vote for Your Favorite Math T-Shirt » 2007-01-19 01:13:59

Devante -

That's right.  It's a charity event that we run every year.  Each year, high schools design t-shirts and the best are selected to be sold to the public.  All the profits are donated back to the participating high school math departments.  This year, we decided to do an online poll in addition to everything to try to get a better idea of which one's would sell the best to generate the most revenue.

Toast -

The infinity one is my favorite, too.  My wife likes the Stonehenge one.

#4 Re: This is Cool » The MU Puzzle » 2007-01-18 04:33:13

mathsyperson -

I believe that your analysis is correct.  Or, those match my own thoughts, anyway.

#5 Re: This is Cool » The MU Puzzle » 2007-01-18 04:30:35

mathsyperson -

You are correct.  You must double the entire string succeeding the 'M' when applying rule 2:

MIUIIUIU -> MIUIIUIUIUIIUIU when applying rule 2
MIIUUI -> MIIUUIIIUUI when applying rule 2


#6 This is Cool » The MU Puzzle » 2007-01-17 17:20:20

Replies: 6

I am currently reading "Godel, Escher, Bach:  an Eternal Golden Braid".  It is a book that, at least so far, attempts to explain Godel's Incompleteness Theorem, among other things about seeking "truth" or a perfect set of axioms.  It's very interesting.  Has anyone else read it? What are your thoughts?

Anyway, this post is about a particular puzzle that is given at the first of the book.  I have not finished the book, so I'm not sure whether or not there is a solution; however, I thought everyone might enjoy churning over it.

So, here it is:

1.  Begin with the string 'MI'.

2.  Now, you can modify your string at any point according to the following rules:

2a.  If your string ends in an 'I', you can add a 'U' to the end of it.
2b.  If your string is of the form M{therest}, you can add {therest} to the end, creating M{therest}{therest}.
2c.  If your string contains 'III', the 'III' can be replaced with a 'U'.
2d.  If your string contains 'UU', the 'UU' can be dropped.

3.  Use the rules above and change 'MI' into 'MU'.

To make sure that it's clear, here is a possible way to apply the rules:

MI -> MII (rule 2b) -> MIIII (rule 2b) -> MIIIIU (rule 2a) -> MIUU (rule 2c) -> MI (rule 2d)

Can you get 'MU'?

Anyway, I have my own thoughts about the answer to the above question, but I will withhold them temporarily as to not color your own investigations.  smile

The discussion around the puzzle is very interesting as well, since it is given specifically to teach about axioms, theorems, etc., but perhaps I will save that for another thread...

#7 This is Cool » Vote for Your Favorite Math T-Shirt » 2007-01-17 17:04:13

Replies: 6

Between now and January 26th, there is a charity event running on the following site for high school math departments:

The way it works is via online vote. There are six t-shirts in the voting booth on the site. On January 26th, the booth will close, and the three most popular shirts will be professionally enhanced, produced, and sold by The Pi-Dye T-Shirt Shop. All the profits from the sales are donated to the participating high schools.

So, check it out! Voting is completely free, the designs are new and fresh, and it's for a good cause.  The more votes we get, the more we can be sure of which shirts will be able to earn the most revenue for the schools once they go on sale to the public.

Thanks and Enjoy!

#8 This is Cool » A Pi Fundraiser » 2005-08-23 13:39:47

Replies: 4

Hey, everyone -

I hope that it is okay to announce this here, but I think that it's a really good cause.

One of our local high schools is running a fundraiser for their math program, and they are earning the money through a very cool pi t-shirt that they designed during the last school year.  For every purchase, the school gets to keep $5.  Their goal is, very appropriately, $3141.59.  smile

Isn't it a great design? I about laughed my head off when I first saw it a couple of months ago.

Even if you aren't interested in the t-shirt itself, please spread the word!

#9 Re: Puzzles and Games » Who owns the fish? » 2005-08-06 15:12:59

I heard that that "Who owns the fish?" puzzle was attributed to Einstein.  Example:  Is there any truth to that?

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