Help? Looking to mail a student's letter to Randall Munroe.

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MegCanada
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Help? Looking to mail a student's letter to Randall Munroe.

Postby MegCanada » Mon Jan 16, 2017 4:02 pm UTC

I'm a tutor, doing enrichment math with an 11 year old girl. We've been reading "What if?" together, and a few days ago she gave me a letter she'd written to Randall Munroe. I've been looking for somewhere to send it, but I haven't found anything resembling a mailing address.

This is the letter: http://imgur.com/a/kEGAd

Any advice on how I can get this to Mr. Munroe?

Thank you! :D

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Re: Help? Looking to mail a student's letter to Randall Munroe.

Postby Felstaff » Tue Jan 17, 2017 1:23 am UTC

Cute.

He hasn't been around the forums for a few years now, but try randall@xkcd.com (random guess), or see http://xkcd.com/about/ for other avenues of contact!

Let us know his reaction if and when you get through.
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MegCanada
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Re: Help? Looking to mail a student's letter to Randall Munroe.

Postby MegCanada » Tue Jan 17, 2017 3:17 am UTC

Thank you! I'll try those emails, and see if I can find anyone who knows how to contact him. Do you know if he's on Reddit?

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Re: Help? Looking to mail a student's letter to Randall Munroe.

Postby SecondTalon » Tue Jan 17, 2017 3:40 am UTC

His last Reddit post was two years ago, with the second and third most recent being three and four years ago respectively.

So i''m going to say no.
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Re: Help? Looking to mail a student's letter to Randall Munroe.

Postby doogly » Tue Jan 17, 2017 1:09 pm UTC

If you're just curious about the answer though, the the interesting thing is that they would not, if the mass of the black hole were the same as the mass of the sun, just now it's a black hole instead of a star. Then the planets would all get very very cold and dark, but their orbits wouldn't change at all.
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Re: Help? Looking to mail a student's letter to Randall Munroe.

Postby Liri » Tue Jan 17, 2017 2:03 pm UTC

The space tornado visualization of black holes has been stunting our youth!
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Re: Help? Looking to mail a student's letter to Randall Munroe.

Postby SecondTalon » Tue Jan 17, 2017 2:21 pm UTC

doogly wrote:If you're just curious about the answer though, the the interesting thing is that they would not, if the mass of the black hole were the same as the mass of the sun, just now it's a black hole instead of a star. Then the planets would all get very very cold and dark, but their orbits wouldn't change at all.

But in What If fashion, what if the sun was replace with a black hole of equal volume, not mass?
heuristically_alone wrote:I want to write a DnD campaign and play it by myself and DM it myself.
heuristically_alone wrote:I have been informed that this is called writing a book.

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doogly
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Re: Help? Looking to mail a student's letter to Randall Munroe.

Postby doogly » Tue Jan 17, 2017 2:34 pm UTC

Volume isn't so well defined. Maybe... maybe surface area? Would you like a black hole of the same surface area? That is unambiguous but still you have to do an integral. It's maybe not the hardest integral for an 11 year if it's set up though, not so bad. I can do this integral if you care.

Turn into a black hole of the same radius, that's a nice conversion. Radius is what we care about for black holes.

But then how long till we fall in? Much harder. Especially if you're not willing to pretend our initial velocity was zero. Or that thing don't just follow Kepler style orbits up to the horizon. No, you want general relativity with multiple directions involved, because you're mean. Look, there's a reason I preferred to interpret the question in the way that had the least integrals.

I can think about this later. But, noting that this is a very much "what if" question, it occurs to me that the right way to contact Randall in this case is to email
whatif@xkcd.com

Liri wrote:The space tornado visualization of black holes has been stunting our youth!

It has.
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MegCanada
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Re: Help? Looking to mail a student's letter to Randall Munroe.

Postby MegCanada » Tue Jan 17, 2017 3:11 pm UTC

doogly wrote:Volume isn't so well defined. Maybe... maybe surface area? Would you like a black hole of the same surface area? That is unambiguous but still you have to do an integral. It's maybe not the hardest integral for an 11 year if it's set up though, not so bad. I can do this integral if you care.


My student's next class is on Wednesday, but I suspect her answer to your offer to set up the integral would be "yes, please!"

When I see her, I'll also ask her to define the parameters of her question more precisely. :D


doogly wrote:I can think about this later. But, noting that this is a very much "what if" question, it occurs to me that the right way to contact Randall in this case is to email
whatif@xkcd.com


Good idea! And I can help her do that, next time I see her.

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doogly
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Re: Help? Looking to mail a student's letter to Randall Munroe.

Postby doogly » Tue Jan 17, 2017 3:41 pm UTC

I think that first bit is totally the most interesting part too though - like, it is really weird that you can Alice and Bob can be zipping through space in different frame, both agree that there is a black hole, and they both agree on the value for the radius and surface area, but disagree on the volume. That is a spacetime shenanigan.
LE4dGOLEM: What's a Doug?
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Re: Help? Looking to mail a student's letter to Randall Munroe.

Postby Jorpho » Tue Jan 17, 2017 6:31 pm UTC

SecondTalon wrote:His last Reddit post was two years ago, with the second and third most recent being three and four years ago respectively.

So i''m going to say no.
Seems to me he must surely be posting under an alias, so as not to be mobbed by fan mail and death threats.

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doogly
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Re: Help? Looking to mail a student's letter to Randall Munroe.

Postby doogly » Tue Jan 17, 2017 7:29 pm UTC

Or he might not use reddit at all, which makes sense because reddit is terrible.

Then again he thought google plus was cool so who knows.
LE4dGOLEM: What's a Doug?
Noc: A larval Doogly. They grow the tail and stinger upon reaching adulthood.

Keep waggling your butt brows Brothers.
Or; Is that your eye butthairs?


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