If you’re earnestly chasing something that can’t tun as fast as you do, a cursory mathematical analysis of the situation can give a reassuring result – you’ll probably catch up with it. (Despite what the Ancient Greek philosopher Zeno might have said about it). But what if the entity being chased knows that it’s being […]

# Tag: maths

## The possibilities of math(s) genes [new study]

If you experience any difficulties in visualising the implications of equations like these . . . – could your genetic makeup be sub-optimal? They’re from a new study published in bioRxiv which examines Genetic Associations with Mathematics Tracking and Persistence in Secondary School The research project (from the Department of Psychology and Population Research Center, […]

## Renewed Interest in Octonions

“There are exactly four normed division algebras: the real numbers (R), complex numbers (C), quaternions (H), and octonions (O). The real numbers are the dependable breadwinner of the family, the complete ordered field we all rely on. The complex numbers are a slightly ﬂashier but still respectable younger brother: not ordered, but algebraically complete. The […]

## Improving our understanding of Bamboozle Structures

It’s not everyday that a newly discovered 3-D mathematical concept appears on the topological horizon. But one did in 2012. It’s called the Bamboozle Structure. “Bamboozle consists of 51 equilateral triangles, meeting pairwise at an angle of about 70.5 degrees (arccos 1/3).” It seems that topologists haven’t given a great deal of consideration to Bamboozle […]

## Generalizing Keeler’s theorem (a.k.a. The Futurama Theorem)

Theorem 1. Let n ∈ N, n ≥ 2. The inverse of any permutation in Sn can be written as a product of distinct transpositions in Sn+2 \ Sn. Mathematically inclined aficionados of the cult animation series Futurama will no doubt recognise the theorem above – it was first posited by Ken Keeler in the […]

## Unresolvable human mental states (based on a parallel universe theory)

“A mental state with respect to a situation composed by multiplying two situations equals the sum of mental states for each situation. A mental state with respect to a situation composed by dividing two situations equals the difference between mental states for each situation.” So explain professor Changsoo Shin and colleagues at the Department of […]

## Is God dead? – the math(s)

Friedrich Nietzsche [pictured] caused a considerable stir in 1882 when he pronounced (via his book Die fröhliche Wissenschaft) that “God is dead”. Since then, a great number of philosophers and theologians have analysed his provocative statement – but not all that many mathematicians. One exception is Changsoo Shin who is a professor at the Department […]

*Hey Maths!* (Beatles studies)

Improbable recently drew attention to ‘Why the Beatles Succeeded but Broke Up: the Math(s)’, now we turn instead to mathematical considerations of the band’s music (rather than of the band itself). In particular, a paper in a Special Beatles Studies issue of the journal Volume !, 2016/1 (12:2) entitled ‘Hey Maths! Modèles formels et computationnels […]

## Why the Beatles Succeeded but Broke Up: the Math(s)

Over the years, many investigators have examined possible factors which might have led to the breakup of The Beatles, but Professor Tadashi Yagi (Faculty of Economics, Doshisha University, Kyoto, Japan) is one of the few* scholars to have approached the subject from a mathematical standpoint. The professor takes the view that incentives for collaborating within […]

## Towards perfecting men’s necktie lengths

Following our recent improbable article on the non-linearities of Windsor Knot tying may we also recommend a paper which might be of particular interest to adult Korean males who wear neckties. Eun-Kyung Park and Jee-Won Hong presented a paper in the Journal of the Korean Society of Clothing and Textiles, Vol 27, No. 11, 2003, pp. […]