"Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

For the discussion of math. Duh.

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"Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby Cosmologicon » Fri Feb 15, 2008 5:21 pm UTC

Suppose everyone else woke up one day and had no memory of all mathematical conventions, notation, and terminology. And you've got to invent it all over again. Just as well, since it was a horrible mess burdened by the influence of natural language for thousands of years. What would you do better?

I'd go with base 6, as I said in some other thread. The multiplication table is much smaller, fractions work out more often, and it's easier to count on your fingers. All one-digit numbers would be one syllable, and none of them would sound as similar as "five" and "nine". Longer numbers (up to 10000 = 129610) would just be the one-digit numbers concatenated in groups of four.

There would also be special terms for all 36 two-digit sequences. It wouldn't be used for math, just for memorizing long strings of numbers. People who used it would translate back and forth if they needed to do any computation. The reason for this is that I heard that most people's ability to remember a number drops off after seven digits... something about short-term memory. So that's a disadvantage of base 6.

In the scheme of things, a different base isn't that far out there. Anybody willing to be more drastic?

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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby SpitValve » Fri Feb 15, 2008 6:22 pm UTC

Use complex numbers for everything, so that people stop thinking they're "less real" than real numbers.

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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby Token » Fri Feb 15, 2008 6:56 pm UTC

All mathematical terms would be four letters long or less, for writing convenience.

Also, everyone would call it "maths".
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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby Mathmagic » Fri Feb 15, 2008 7:01 pm UTC

Token wrote:Also, everyone would call it "maths".

Fun fact: Despite my very Canadian heritage, I've started using "maths" instead of "math", unintentionally.

I would make sure that everyone knew the exponential representation of trigonometric functions, so that the derivatives of said functions actually make sense.
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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby The_Spectre » Fri Feb 15, 2008 7:05 pm UTC

Pi would be 6.283... . A full circle of radians. ei Pi= 1, and all sorts of wonderful things.

http://www.math.utah.edu/~palais/pi.pdf

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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby notzeb » Fri Feb 15, 2008 8:16 pm UTC

Base six?

This... is... BALANCED TERNARY!!!
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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby skeptical scientist » Fri Feb 15, 2008 8:35 pm UTC

I'd use scientific notation for everything over 1000. A car wouldn't cost twenty-four thousand dollars, but rather two-point-four-times-ten-to-four dollars. The population of the earth would be six-point-six-times-ten-to-nine people.

Also, I'd make damn sure that everyone agreed that 0 was not a natural number, and that all sequences began with first term 1. (Aside - now that I'm in logic, I have to follow the opposite convention. :()
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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby ironicus » Fri Feb 15, 2008 9:32 pm UTC

skeptical scientist wrote:...(Aside - now that I'm in logic, I have to follow the opposite convention. :()

But now you are in logic, so taking the opposite convention means nothing to you.

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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby skeptical scientist » Fri Feb 15, 2008 9:44 pm UTC

Erm, what?
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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby Izzhov » Fri Feb 15, 2008 9:55 pm UTC

Cosmologicon wrote:The reason for this is that I heard that most people's ability to remember a number drops off after seven digits... something about short-term memory.

3.14158265358979323846264338327 (I did that without looking it up.)
...you were saying?

SpitValve wrote:Use complex numbers for everything, so that people stop thinking they're "less real" than real numbers.

"That's $3i+2, thanks!"

But... wouldn't that mean we'd need two different kinds of currency whose respective values can not be compared together in a ratio? That seems pretty inconvenient. :/ UNLESS you put all purchasable products into two different categories (probably goods and services) and said that, say, "real" money could only be used on products, and "imaginary" money could only be used on services. So, if someone gave you a $3i shave and then sold you a mint for $2, then the total would be $3i+2. That sounds pretty awesome, now that I think about it.

Token wrote:Also, everyone would call it "maths".

No. Just no. Mathematics is not a plural noun. It is neither singular nor plural. Putting that "s" on the end of the abbreviation is therefore not only pointless, but it breaks your other rule about four-letter-long-maximum math terms.

The_Spectre wrote:Pi would be 6.283... . A full circle of radians. ei Pi= 1, and all sorts of wonderful things.

http://www.math.utah.edu/~palais/pi.pdf

That's a pretty good idea, actually... but then 0 wouldn't have any part in the equation (which is currently ei Pi + 1= 0). I think 0 is important enough to be included in the equation.

skeptical scientist wrote:I'd use scientific notation for everything over 1000. A car wouldn't cost twenty-four thousand dollars, but rather two-point-four-times-ten-to-four dollars. The population of the earth would be six-point-six-times-ten-to-nine people.

So you don't want to change to base 6, like Cosmologicon? Why not? He made some pretty strong arguments for it.

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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby Cosmologicon » Fri Feb 15, 2008 10:00 pm UTC

Izzhov wrote:
Cosmologicon wrote:The reason for this is that I heard that most people's ability to remember a number drops off after seven digits... something about short-term memory.

3.14158265358979323846264338327 (I did that without looking it up.)
...you were saying?

Ha, obviously people can memorize more than seven if they work at it, but there's a limit to how many you can hold in your short-term memory only hearing them once. For instance, have a friend find a series of 20 random digits and read them off to you at a reasonable speed. Then see how many you can correctly recite back, starting at the beginning. This has practical implications for numbers that need to be communicated, in particular phone numbers.

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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby Izzhov » Fri Feb 15, 2008 10:07 pm UTC

[quote="Cosmologicon"Ha, obviously people can memorize more than seven if they work at it, but there's a limit to how many you can hold in your short-term memory only hearing them once. For instance, have a friend find a series of 20 random digits and read them off to you at a reasonable speed. Then see how many you can correctly recite back, starting at the beginning. This has practical implications for numbers that need to be communicated, in particular phone numbers.[/quote]
Ohh, good point.

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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby Ieatsoap6 » Fri Feb 15, 2008 10:59 pm UTC

Token wrote:All mathematical terms would be four letters long or less, for writing convenience.

Also, everyone would call it "maths".



"Maths" isn't a mathematical term?

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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby VolatileStorm » Fri Feb 15, 2008 11:19 pm UTC

I agree with Feynman, I'd replace functional notation because it can just become really damn confusing when you're first learning it. For example f(x), you start to lose a little bit of mathematical consistency because you can't divide by f. Same for dy/dx the ds SHOULD cancel, but they don't because it's special. Also the trig functions should have special pictures as well. Instead of cos(x) you'd have a special symbol that is not an english letter. If I remember the way Feynman described it it'd be like the sigma sign mixed with the squared root sign, with the line going above the function you're taking the cosine of.

I just want more consistency damn it. :)

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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby Token » Fri Feb 15, 2008 11:28 pm UTC

Izzhov wrote:
Token wrote:Also, everyone would call it "maths".

No. Just no. Mathematics is not a plural noun. It is neither singular nor plural. Putting that "s" on the end of the abbreviation is therefore not only pointless, but it breaks your other rule about four-letter-long-maximum math terms.

a) It's exactly as pointless as having an 's' on the end of 'mathematics', so your objection on those grounds is irrelevant. I'm pretty sure we've already had a thread on maths vs. math, so go debate it in there, if you absolutely have to.
b) By "maths term", I mean things like "continuous" and "topological space". "Maths" is not one of these.

Izzhov wrote:
The_Spectre wrote:Pi would be 6.283... . A full circle of radians. ei Pi= 1, and all sorts of wonderful things.

http://www.math.utah.edu/~palais/pi.pdf

That's a pretty good idea, actually... but then 0 wouldn't have any part in the equation (which is currently ei Pi + 1= 0). I think 0 is important enough to be included in the equation.

I don't think Euler's identity was the driving reason behind the modification...
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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby Ieatsoap6 » Sat Feb 16, 2008 12:17 am UTC

Izzhov wrote:
Ieatsoap6 wrote:
Token wrote:All mathematical terms would be four letters long or less, for writing convenience.

Also, everyone would call it "maths".



"Maths" isn't a mathematical term?

Thanks for repeating exactly what I said four posts ago! That was entirely helpful of you!


Yeah, I didn't read it. Sue me.

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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby Izzhov » Sat Feb 16, 2008 12:24 am UTC

Token wrote:
Izzhov wrote:
Token wrote:Also, everyone would call it "maths".

No. Just no. Mathematics is not a plural noun. It is neither singular nor plural. Putting that "s" on the end of the abbreviation is therefore not only pointless, but it breaks your other rule about four-letter-long-maximum math terms.

a) It's exactly as pointless as having an 's' on the end of 'mathematics', so your objection on those grounds is irrelevant. I'm pretty sure we've already had a thread on maths vs. math, so go debate it in there, if you absolutely have to.

I can't find it in the search bar, so I'll just discuss it here. I'll cease if you provide a link to the thread.
Why is it pointless to have an "s" on the end of "mathematics?" Is it pointless to have an "s" on the end of "has?" Or "gas?" Or "mantis?"

Token wrote:b) By "maths term", I mean things like "continuous" and "topological space". "Maths" is not one of these.

I don't see how it isn't. Could you please elaborate?

Token wrote:
Izzhov wrote:
The_Spectre wrote:Pi would be 6.283... . A full circle of radians. ei Pi= 1, and all sorts of wonderful things.

http://www.math.utah.edu/~palais/pi.pdf

That's a pretty good idea, actually... but then 0 wouldn't have any part in the equation (which is currently ei Pi + 1= 0). I think 0 is important enough to be included in the equation.

I don't think Euler's identity was the driving reason behind the modification...

Then what was?

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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby JayDee » Sat Feb 16, 2008 12:37 am UTC

Izzhov wrote:
Token wrote:I'm pretty sure we've already had a thread on maths vs. math, so go debate it in there, if you absolutely have to.
I can't find it in the search bar, so I'll just discuss it here. I'll cease if you provide a link to the thread.
I know search-fu.
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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby VolatileStorm » Sat Feb 16, 2008 12:40 am UTC

I think a couple of examples of what was is the equation of the circumference and h bar (reduced plancks constant although that's physics I know).

I read an article on it that was on digg a while back, there are a few other examples in which basically you find that there are more occasions that you use 2pi than pi.

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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby mrbaggins » Sat Feb 16, 2008 1:19 am UTC

You got the 6th digit wrong, which personally, would be pretty important considering it's only 6 digits in.
3.14158265358979323846264338327
3.14159265358979323846264338328 (This 8 is rounded up from 7)

But hey, I can only remember up to here without cheating and looking it up.
3.14159265358979
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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby NathanielJ » Sat Feb 16, 2008 1:34 am UTC

I memorized 300 digits of pi when I was in grade 12, but only 50 digits are left in my noggin'

I like the idea of not using base 10, but as a computer-sciency type of person, I would much prefer that the world used base 8 or base 16. Everything would be so cut and dry and simple then.
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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby Cosmologicon » Sat Feb 16, 2008 1:57 am UTC

NathanielJ wrote:I like the idea of not using base 10, but as a computer-sciency type of person, I would much prefer that the world used base 8 or base 16. Everything would be so cut and dry and simple then.

8 wouldn't be bad, but I think it would just be too darn hard to do multiplication in base 16. As far as nice fractions go, you don't get anything more if your radix has a square factor compared to if it's squarefree. Every fraction that terminates in base 16 also terminates in base 6 and base 10 (though not as fast). Meanwhile, 1/3 terminates in base 6 and 1/5 terminates in base 10, and they're both infinite repeating in base 16.

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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby NathanielJ » Sat Feb 16, 2008 2:03 am UTC

Every fraction that terminates in base 16 also terminates in base 6 and base 10 (though not as fast). Meanwhile, 1/3 terminates in base 6 and 1/5 terminates in base 10, and they're both infinite repeating in base 16.


Of course. Perhaps base 16 wouldn't be too great then, but I stand by my choice of base 8.

How about base 2520? Lots of fractions would terminate then ;)
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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby orangeperson » Sat Feb 16, 2008 4:16 am UTC

First off, people would memorize something more useful than pi. Primes, maybe.

Second, it would be very consistent.
-There are operators, such as + and -.
-+, -, and division are all done the same way. Division is always done with the line and the numerator and denominator. Multiplication is always shown by placing the operands next to each other. Exponents are placed to the upper right of the base, roots are shown as 1 over the root. Logs are put to the upper left.
-() can delimit expressions
-Functions not defined above are written like this: <function arguments>. For example, <sin pi>.
-{1,2,3} means the set of 1, 2, and 3. {1:3} means from 1 to 3. [ is inclusive.

Something like that.
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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby Indon » Sat Feb 16, 2008 5:06 am UTC

Cosmologicon wrote:I'd go with base 6, as I said in some other thread.


I wouldn't go with a single standard base. Use of multiple bases for various functions would encourage the standardization of an understanding of numbers which is not tied to any base, which I feel to be stronger.

NathanielJ wrote:How about base 2520? Lots of fractions would terminate then ;)


Better to use a factorial. 120 seems nice.
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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby notzeb » Sat Feb 16, 2008 5:53 am UTC

We wouldn't use one of your arbitrary base systems! Instead, the place value of the nth digit from the right would be n!, so for instance, 42201! = 4*120 + 2*24 + 2*6 + 0*2 + 1*1 = 54110. Of course, the digits themselves would be represented this way, so that would actually be 42201! = (20!)(10!)(10!)01! = ((10!)0!)(10!)(10!)01!. Since this would be standard notation, we can get rid of the ! subscript, and just represent 54110 as ((10)0)(10)(10)01. This way, we can easily write down large numbers, for instance 100! (that is, 100 factorial) is written as 100000.

Also we'd use the +(a,b) function instead of a + b, etc., so people don't get so surprised when we introduce the more complicated functions. Either that, or reverse polish notation.

Edit: hmm, if we allowed "improper" digits (think eleventy-twelve), then base 10 is a special case of our new number system, for instance, 101102 = (((10)1)1)0. Also, multiplication and addition are much easier than you'd expect (although the method is radically different from the one you're used to).
Last edited by notzeb on Sat Feb 16, 2008 6:21 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby antonfire » Sat Feb 16, 2008 6:15 am UTC

I'm surprised that nobody has mentioned this: postfix notation for functions. Instead of writing f(x), you'd write (x)f. Function composition could finally be read from left to right without creating messy notation. f composed with g, would actually mean do f first, then g. And, yes, this includes writing (2+2)*3 as 2 2 + 3 *. Parentheses are annoying.

Instead of Lp(R), with p ranging from 1 to infinity, we'd write Lp(R) with p ranging from 0 to 1. Holder's inequality and its generalizations could be stated without a bunch of inverses and junk.

ex would be written as exp(x), or e(x). (Well, (x)exp, or (x)e, but yeah. One thing at a time, I guess.) First of all, this reduces the need to write stuff tinily in the superscript. Second of all, ab is actually defined as exp(b log(a)), not the other way around. The way I see it, the exponential function is more "fundamental" than both Euler's constant and exponentiation of real/complex numbers.

Things like dy/dx are often misleading, especially when you get into multivariable calculus but also make thinking about things a lot easier. I'd seriously consider changing that notation, but I don't have a good alternative in mind.

I don't know what base I'd use, but it probably wouldn't be ten.

I might have people use continued fractions to represent numbers more often. I think it has some potential to be useful.

Proofs are really directed (hopefully cycleless) graphs, not sequences of statements. It'd be nice to have a format to actually "write" them that way, but it wouldn't work on paper. For purely computer-mediated communication, though, I think it'd be awesome. Same with a lot of other things. We often write things in sequence just to force it into a sentence. If we didn't have that limitation, we could represent things in much more natural forms. A complicated expression is really a tree, not a sequence of symbols. I'd like to store it that way. (Same goes for regular sentences, to some extent.)
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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby Torn Apart By Dingos » Sat Feb 16, 2008 7:17 am UTC

Writing functions as "f x" instead of "f(x)".

Ban the term one-to-one and only use injective and bijective.

The notation for a sum is pretty stupid, especially on doubly-infinite sums (with n=-inf on the bottom).

I don't think using postfix or rpn would be productive. Being able to quickly tell apart terms in an expression is helpful. Also, the same expression can be written in several ways in rpn, which may or may not be a bad thing.

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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby antonfire » Sat Feb 16, 2008 7:46 am UTC

I think it's pretty easy to pick out terms in RPN, once you get the hang of it. They're just as "clumped together" as they are in infix notation. If you mean the issue of confusing 12 3 + with 1 23 +, it can be easily solved with occasional commas. You wouldn't need to do it if you were typesetting, and anyway it'd be much less of a mess than the parentheses that we have now.

As for writing the same expression in different ways, the same is true for infix notation. One advantage (sometimes a disadvantage) of infix is that it assumes associativity. It's true that 1+2+3 can be written as 1 2 3 + +, or 1 2 + 3 +. The "quick fix" is to make it 1 2 3 +, but that doesn't work. What is 1 2 3 * 4 +? Is it 1*2*3+4 or 1+2*3+4? One way to solve this, and I rather like this approach at first glance, is to make it 1 2 3 *3 4 + for the first case and 1 2 3 * 4 +3 for the second. This disambiguates everything and has the added advantage of separating conceptually the use of + as a binary operator and the use of + as a trinary operator (and an n-ary operator in general). It also allows for the nice things using "..." in infix notation. 1+...+n = n*(n+1)/2 becomes 1 ... n +n n n 1 + * 2 / =. Even more awesomely, it lets you write a ... a +b a b * =.[1] Try writing that in the regular notation without a sigma or some words.


To add to what I'd change, I would also use different symbols for subtraction and negation. Grr.

[1]Actually, maybe these should be 1 n ... +n and a a ... +b. Hm.
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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby Torn Apart By Dingos » Sat Feb 16, 2008 8:10 am UTC

By "term" I meant summand. Picking out a,b,c,d from a+b+c+d. Or in general, picking out the factors of a product, etc. And especially, the expressions of an equation (with your usage of =).

There's only one way to write expressions in infix (if you don't assume commutativity).

antonfire wrote:a ... a +b a b * =.[1] Try writing that in the regular notation without a sigma or some words.
I would just write a+...+a and n below it under an \underbar.

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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby skeptical scientist » Sat Feb 16, 2008 8:29 am UTC

antonfire wrote:1+...+n = n*(n+1)/2 becomes 1 ... n +n n n 1 + * 2 / =. Even more awesomely, it lets you write a ... a +b a b * =.[1]

No. Equality is not an operator, and you can't write a b = for a = b. You just... can't.
[1]Actually, maybe these should be 1 n ... +n and a a ... +b. Hm.

NO! Go that far, and I'd have to haul you to The Hague.
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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby antonfire » Sat Feb 16, 2008 9:28 am UTC

Torn Apart By Dingos wrote:There's only one way to write expressions in infix (if you don't assume commutativity).
*shrug* Not assuming commutativity but assuming associativity seems pretty arbitrary to me.

Torn Apart By Dingos wrote:
antonfire wrote:a ... a +b a b * =.[1] Try writing that in the regular notation without a sigma or some words.
I would just write a+...+a and n below it under an \underbar.
Bah! I was considering writing "on one line" to take care of that case, but decided that it would make my sentence too cumbersome. Curse my editing!

skeptical scientist wrote:No. Equality is not an operator, and you can't write a b = for a = b. You just... can't.
Watch me! Mua-ha-ha!

Sometimes, I find it helpful to think of logical statements as functions that take on truth values. I'd also have to write "A B or" for "A or B", I suppose, to be consistent.

Yeah, okay, fine, this can definitely be taken too far. Still, I just like postfix, for some reason. Maybe because I don't actually have to work with it.


Anyway, what I'd really like to see is some nonsequential format, for mathematics and other things. This already happens with footnotes, if you need to make a short branch somewhere in your text. It happens even with the websites. You can't read Wikipedia in order, really. You jump from one spot to another. Complicated expressions are actually abstract trees, and this infix-prefix-postfix stuff is just different ways of representing those trees. If you've ever diagrammed a sentence, you know that sentences are trees as well. Formal proofs are usually pretty close to trees, converging on the statement that you want to prove. You can't put these down on paper, but you can put it down in a computer, and have a program to visualize it. Imagine actually seeing the graph structure of a proof. You could have a long, thin one, or a short, wide one. While I'm all for computer independence, I think it would be really cool to have something like that.
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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby Ended » Sat Feb 16, 2008 10:41 am UTC

A ⊆ B will always include the possibility that A=B.
A ⊂ B will always denote that A is a strict subset of B.

The notation Image will be shot in the face, yo.
[edit: well, I suppose we would have forgotten it, but we would re-invent it solely for the purpose of then shooting it in the face].
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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby Govalant » Sat Feb 16, 2008 2:40 pm UTC

Indon wrote:Better to use a factorial. 120 seems nice.


2520 is 7!/2. ;)
Now these points of data make a beautiful line.

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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby Sir_Elderberry » Sat Feb 16, 2008 3:07 pm UTC

orangeperson wrote:-+, -, and division are all done the same way. Division is always done with the line and the numerator and denominator. Multiplication is always shown by placing the operands next to each other. Exponents are placed to the upper right of the base, roots are shown as 1 over the root. Logs are put to the upper left.


So what, then, is x2y? x2 * y or x * log2y? Would be confusing.
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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby Token » Sat Feb 16, 2008 3:51 pm UTC

Izzhov wrote:Why is it pointless to have an "s" on the end of "mathematics?" Is it pointless to have an "s" on the end of "has?" Or "gas?" Or "mantis?"

Hold on... do you not even understand your own argument?

Hint: I'm not the one in favour of not having an 's' on the end of words which aren't plural.

Izzhov wrote:
Token wrote:b) By "maths term", I mean things like "continuous" and "topological space". "Maths" is not one of these.

I don't see how it isn't. Could you please elaborate?

Because I don't use the word "maths" to describe any mathematical object? Because I never have to use the word "maths" when writing a proof, which is exactly why I want the terms shortened?
Last edited by Token on Sat Feb 16, 2008 8:17 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby Likpok » Sat Feb 16, 2008 7:03 pm UTC

To add to what I'd change, I would also use different symbols for subtraction and negation. Grr.


Why? Subtraction and negation are the same, so why should we pollute the namespace with additional symbology?

Everywhere I have seen it, subtraction is the addition of the additive inverse.
(a-b = a + -b)
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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby gmalivuk » Sat Feb 16, 2008 8:40 pm UTC

Izzhov wrote:
Cosmologicon wrote:The reason for this is that I heard that most people's ability to remember a number drops off after seven digits... something about short-term memory.

3.14158265358979323846264338327 (I did that without looking it up.)
...you were saying?

Bragging is pretty funny when it's as wrong as that!

Care to contribute anything worthwhile to this thread, Izzhov?
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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby M.qrius » Sun Feb 17, 2008 5:48 pm UTC

The_Spectre wrote:Pi would be 6.283... . A full circle of radians. ei Pi= 1, and all sorts of wonderful things.

http://www.math.utah.edu/~palais/pi.pdf

Did anyone else read that and think it was overlooking an important fact as well? I mean c'mon. You can't write 2 pages about it without thinking "Hey, maybe Pi DOES make sense, since it's the ratio of the circumference to the diameter! Let's stop writing, before I make a fool out of myself..."

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Re: "Oh no! We forgot how to say... math... stuff!"

Postby GBog » Sun Feb 17, 2008 6:42 pm UTC

M.qrius wrote:
The_Spectre wrote:Pi would be 6.283... . A full circle of radians. ei Pi= 1, and all sorts of wonderful things.

http://www.math.utah.edu/~palais/pi.pdf

Did anyone else read that and think it was overlooking an important fact as well? I mean c'mon. You can't write 2 pages about it without thinking "Hey, maybe Pi DOES make sense, since it's the ratio of the circumference to the diameter! Let's stop writing, before I make a fool out of myself..."


What's so special about the diameter? When you express formulae for circular things (that is circles, spheres, glooms etc.) do you ever use the diameter? What do you use?

The guy has a point, but on the other hand, getting the mathematical world to change its conventions at this point is not a simple task, so it's probably not worth the effort.


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