Posts Tagged ‘Prime numbers’

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7. Maths is really SCARY!

September 13, 2017

The Complaint: Maths is really SCARY!………………

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The Cause:

Some students think maths is always right or wrong and they are scared of making mistakes.

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The Solution:

You are going to do maths with no right or wrong answers. You just start and see what results you get.

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7a. Dad Jokes: The positive, the negative and the number line

Yeah! It’s a Dad Joke!

7b.  Middle School Maths Photo Scavenger Hunt  

Whoa! Totally CRAZY! Skiing a HELIX.

It looks like a Fibonacci Spiral, but that is an illusion. Steps on a spiral staircase are always the same length!

NO! This is not your homework. No stunts. 

Just show us where you see maths in the world.

7c. Crack a Security Code for Middle School…… Yes! Really!

Prime Numbers vs The Hackers!

Note: The last challenge involves guess work. Maybe, an intelligent guess, but, maybe, not.

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10 Quirky Quotes for Maths Teachers

May 2, 2014

Mathspig Quirky Quote 1

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Mathspig Quirky Quote 2

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Mathspig Quirky Quote 3

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Mathspig Quirky Quote 4

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Mathspig Quirky Quote 5

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Mathspig Quirky Quote 6

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Mathspig Quirky Quote 7

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Mathspig Quirky Quote 8

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Mathspig Quirky Quote 9

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Mathspig Quirky Quote 10

Photo source: 1. Breyers factory Philadelphia, 2. wrongsideoftheheart blog, 3. wsj.com, 4. Unsourced, 5. Dsilymail, 6. Unsourced, 7. Unsourced, 8. Watvhistory, 9. Maths-shirt- nevernotanerd website, 10. unsourced

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5. Make Lotsa D’Oh!

September 24, 2013

Producers, writers and presenters of TV science and health docos need maths. But did you know mathematicians are also involved in drama and comedy shows from Numb3rs to The Big Bang Theory to The Simpsons.

Mathspig wrote for an Australian comedy Show in the 80s called The Comedy Company.

What’s the connection between Maths and TV Comedy you ask? The Crazy Bit.

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The Big Bang Theory Maths

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big bang 1big bang 2

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 The Big Bang Theory is a comedy based on the lives of house-mate physicists Sheldon and Leonard. But the science has to be right for the humour to work as not only do maths nerds star in the show, maths nerds watch it too.

According to Wired magazine, David Satlzberg a physics professor who teaches at UCLA is ‘working on his fifth season as the science consultant for The Big Bang Theory’

DavidSaltzberg

He makes sure the science on the show is right.

Here’s what a fact checker does:

For example, the script I’m reading right now I changed one letter. They had mentioned an ‘anti-photon’ but that doesn’t make any sense because there is no such thing. So I suggested changing it to ‘anti-proton.’

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The Simpsons Maths

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Butterfinger-math……barat simpson maths……lisa-simpson-math

 

 Simon Singh recently explained in The Guardian that an amazing number of Maths Geeks are writers for The Simpsons. 

eg. ‘Al Jean, who worked on the first series and is now executive producer, went to Harvard University to study mathematics at the age of just 16.’

The maths geeks entertain themselves by dropping hidden maths references into the TV series.

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eg. The screen displays three multiple choice options; 8,128, 8,208 and 8,191. These digits might seem arbitrary and innocuous, but in fact they represent a perfect number, a narcissistic number and a Mersenne prime.

The-Simpsons-and-Their-Mathe

Fortunately, Simon goes on to explain these and many more Maths references in The Simpsons in his book: The Simpsons and their Mathematical Secrets.

Perfect No

 

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NO SUCH LUCK or Numerology for Idiots

November 22, 2011

Your mission, mathspigs, if you choose, is to spread mathematical thinking.

THE GOOD

We seek to establish patterns in numbers using equations, algorithms and/or graphs.

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THE BAD

But we ALSO endeavour to debunk those who attribute magical meaning to numbers.  Numerologists, psychics and clairvoyants often attribute mystical powers to numbers simply because they do not understand the concept of RANDOMNESS.

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Here is a quote from Does 11.11.11 Have Anything to Do with Science?, Scientific America on, naturally, 11 Nov 2011.

“Numerological coincidences remain fascinating precisely because they can boast no general or cosmic meaning whatsoever,” (Stephen Jay) Gould explains in I Have Landed: the End of a Beginning in Natural History. The “eerie fascination” many people have with “coincidence and numerology” Gould attributes to the fact that people have “so thoroughly misunderstood probability.”

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THE CRAZY

Then there’s dealin’ with the crazies like pi, e, i, infinity  and all those IRRATIONAL NUMBERS. Yep! Maths involves dealing with lots of crazies. (See Below.) But we can do it, mathspigs.

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BAD 1: There are LUCKY NUMBERS

WHAT 6 NUMBERS WOULD YOU USE IN A LOTTERY DRAW?

Birthdays, favourites, ages, lucky numbers ……?   It doesn’t matter. The chance or probability is the same. There are no lucky numbers.

If you were selecting  six numbers at random, however, would you pick 1,2,3,4,5,6?

What are the chances?

The chance or probability of 1,2,3,4,5 and 6 being selected in a 6 ball draw is THE SAME  as any other combination of 6 numbers out of 49, which is 13,983,816.

Yet we see 1,2,3,4,5,6 as an UNLUCKY NUMBER combination for no reason.

This is the GAMBLER’s ERROR. There is no such thing as LUCKY NUMBERS or UNLUCKY NUMBERS.

See No. 26 It’s Your Turn Tonight and Crazy Lotto Lovers Go Bananas Again

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BAD 2: There are MAGICAL NUMBERS


Was Friday 11.11.11 more significant than, say, today 22.11.11 or in USA 11.22.11?

Ooooooo Magic!!!!! Lots of people thought 111111 was a LUCKY NUMBER.

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Mathspig writes for newspapers. One reader WHO turned 11 on 11.11.11 e-mailed me asking if I’d like to write an article about her.

Firstly, there is no special meaning in 11.11.11. It just looks pretty and, in reality, her birth date is 11.11.2011. Ooops!

Secondly, in the UK 1,490 kids turned 11 on 11.11.11. In Victoria, Australia, 160 kids turned 11 on 11.11.11. Not so special then. Not so LUCKY.

Just because a number has a pretty pattern doesn’t make it MAGICAL.


CRAZY 111111

There are, however, some Fabulously FREAKY Numbers.

Take 111111 for instance. It is an absolutely fabulous number.   The Math Less Travelled blog explains that numbers of the following sort:

1

11

111

1111

are called (Base 10) REPUNITS.

….. REPUNITS …

And you can prove that every Prime except 3 or 5 are factors of a repunit. This is UNIVERSITY MATHS so you better go to THE MATH LESS TRAVELLED Blog for this proof, meanwhile here is a sample:

And the Winner is REPUNIT 19.

1111111111111111111  is a PRIME NUMBER! Wow!