Favorite math jokes

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Favorite math jokes

Postby Zohar » Sat May 26, 2007 10:43 am UTC

A farmer is asking an engineer, a physicist and a mathematician to build the most efficient fence around his flock of sheep.

The engineer builds a square fence around the sheep and says "That's the best I can do".

The physicist wraps a fence around the equator and slowly shrinks it until it encounters the first sheep, then says "That's the best I can do".

The mathematician smirks and takes a meter-long length of fence, wraps it around himself and declares triumphantly "I define myself to be outside!"

--

John and Michael are in a floating balloon above a canyon.
John turns to Michael and says "I think we're lost", so Michael leans over the canyon and shouts "CAN ANYONE HELP US? WE DON'T KNOW WHERE WE ARE!"
His shout echoes in the canyon and a few minutes later they hear "YOU'RE IN A FLOATING BALLOON ABOVE A CANYON!"
John laughs and says "That's must've been a mathematician."
"How do you know?" asked Michael.
"Simple, his answer was completely accurate and utterly useless".

I know about a billion more but that's enough for now. :-)
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Postby demon » Sat May 26, 2007 10:49 am UTC

My all time favourite might be this one:
A physicist and a mathematician were asked to remove two nails, one of them punched all the way into the wall, the other just half-way. The physicist just pulled out the one that was half-way in and then, after toiling some time, managed to pull out the second one. The mathematician started with the one that was all the way in the wall, since it was more interesting. After some considerable time and effort, he managed to get it out. Then he looked at the other one, and uttering the words "This can be simplified to an already solved case" punched it all the way into the wall.
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Re: Favorite math jokes

Postby Maseiken » Sat May 26, 2007 12:06 pm UTC

(This joke probably isn't worth the build-up, but I couldn't write a shorter one without destroying the story...)

The Mayor of Logic-Ville has explained that he wants all the buildings of the town to be perfect examples of whatever shape they might be, and must obey any mathematical laws that might apply to that shape.

However, a spot of bother has been reached with a cylindrical uilding being planned in the centre of town, as the exact value of Pi has not been calculated, and thus it can never be a TRUE cylinder in it's purest form.

The architect in charge, has called upon the greatest Economist, Mathematician and Philosopher in the world to help him with this conundrum and he goes to each of them in turn to fidn their opinion.

First he turns to the economist who laughs in his face,
"My dear chap!" He laughs
"Why deal with anything that is not a nice round integer? just round in down to 3 and be done with it!"

The architect thinks about this, draws up the plans and shows them to the Mayor, who, in his rage at such an abomination against logic, orders the Economist to be put to death!

The architect then turns to the mathematician, who before even having heard the whole problem, immediatly sets to calculating Pi to it's final digit, he works for 3 solid months, sleeping, eating a drinking only the barest amount to keep him alive and spending all waking hours on the problem. Finally, the mayor is dismayed at the lack of a result and has the mathmatician forcefully pulled away from his work, to preserve his sanity.

Finally they turn to the Philospher in a last-ditch attempt to end the problem once and for all,
"Please." they ask him,
"Won't you find the value of Pi for us?"

The Philosopher looks at the grave of the economist, and the gibbering mathematician, then replies,
"No."
"GRRRRRRRRRROOOOOOOOWR!!!!"
(Translation: "Objection!")

Maseiken had the ball at the top of the key...
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Postby hyperion » Sat May 26, 2007 1:38 pm UTC

The ark lands after The Flood. Noah lets all the animals out. Says, "Go and multiply." Several months pass. Noah decides to check up on the animals. All are doing fine except a pair of snakes. "What's the problem?" says Noah. "Cut down some trees and let us live there", say the snakes. Noah follows their advice. Several more weeks pass. Noah checks on the snakes again. Lots of little snakes, everybody is happy. Noah asks, "Want to tell me how the trees helped?" "Certainly", say the snakes. "We're adders, and we need logs to multiply."
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Postby skeptical scientist » Sat May 26, 2007 8:12 pm UTC

No list of math jokes would be complete without these:

What's purple and communtes?
- An abelian grape.

What's lavender and commutes?
- An Abelian semigrape.

What's purple and all of its offspring have been committed to institutions?
- A simple grape: it has no normal subgrapes.

What is purple, commutes, and is worshipped occasionally?
- A finitely venerated abelian grape.

What's yellow, normed, and complete?
- A Bananach space.

What's green and homeomorphic to the open unit interval?
- The real lime.

What's yellow and equivalent to the axiom of choice?
- Zorn’s lemon.



Finally, this one will always be one of my favorites:

A mathematician, a physicist, and an engineer are riding a train through Scotland.

The engineer looks out the window, sees a black sheep, and exclaims, "Hey! The sheep in Scotland are black!"

The physicist looks out the window and corrects the engineer, "Well, all we know is that some of the sheep are black."

The mathematician looks out the window and corrects the physicist, "Strictly speaking, all we can say is that is that there exists a field in Scotland containing a sheep, at least one side of which is black."
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Postby EvanED » Sat May 26, 2007 8:25 pm UTC

Three statisticians are out hunting. Bird flies up out of the bush, and the first statistician aims and fires. Unfortunately for them, he missed, the bullet going about a foot below the bird. The second one fires, but the bullet goes about a foot above the bird.

The third statistician puts down his gun and says, "All right! We got him!"
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Postby PaulT » Sat May 26, 2007 9:04 pm UTC

What's the path integral around Western Europe?

Zero, because all the Poles are in Eastern Europe.
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Postby skeptical scientist » Sat May 26, 2007 9:52 pm UTC

What makes you think Europe is meromorphic?
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Postby Torn Apart By Dingos » Sat May 26, 2007 10:22 pm UTC

PaulT wrote:What's the path integral around Western Europe?

Zero, because all the Poles are in Eastern Europe.

Actually, there are poles, but they are all removable.
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Postby Maseiken » Sun May 27, 2007 12:44 am UTC

PaulT wrote:What's the path integral around Western Europe?

Zero, because all the Poles are in Eastern Europe.

There is probably at least one Pole in Western Europe, people do move around...
"GRRRRRRRRRROOOOOOOOWR!!!!"
(Translation: "Objection!")

Maseiken had the ball at the top of the key...
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Postby Spag » Sun May 27, 2007 12:45 am UTC

actually the polish are the mexicans of europe.
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Postby Maseiken » Sun May 27, 2007 12:52 am UTC

^Not sure what that means
"GRRRRRRRRRROOOOOOOOWR!!!!"
(Translation: "Objection!")

Maseiken had the ball at the top of the key...
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Postby adlaiff6 » Sun May 27, 2007 3:08 am UTC

I have two jokes that are very similar to two jokes already told.

A pilot is flying his plane, and for unexplained reasons, loses navigational capability and visibility. Hopelessly lost, he keeps flying, hoping to make it out of the clouds, when he sees, in the distance, something resembling a building. He flies closer, and begins to circle it, and eventually, someone inside, undoubtedly attracted by the noise of the plane, leans out a window and yells something inaudible to the pilot. The pilot responds, as loud as he can muster, "Where am I?" to which the man responds, "In a plane!" The pilot safely lands, knowing instantly that he was above Redmond, WA.

What's yellow and infinitely differentiable? A bananalytic function.
3.14159265... wrote:What about quantization? we DO live in a integer world?

crp wrote:oh, i thought you meant the entire funtion was f(n) = (-1)^n
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Postby skeptical scientist » Sun May 27, 2007 3:25 am UTC

adlaiff6 wrote:What's yellow and infinitely differentiable? A bananalytic function.


Shouldn't that be, "What's yellow and locally representable by a power series?" Not all smooth functions are analytic. Or do we think all functions are from C to C?

Okay, I'll stop quibbling with the math in these.
(Maybe)
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Postby adlaiff6 » Sun May 27, 2007 6:11 am UTC

I think "infinitely differentiable" flows better off the tongue.
3.14159265... wrote:What about quantization? we DO live in a integer world?

crp wrote:oh, i thought you meant the entire funtion was f(n) = (-1)^n
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Postby SirNotApearingOnThisForum » Sun May 27, 2007 9:58 am UTC

what do you call an occupied restroom in an airplane?
- a hypotenuse

har. har.
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Postby demon » Sun May 27, 2007 10:29 am UTC

Spag wrote:actually the polish are the mexicans of europe.


You might capitalize some of it to avoid people being mad at you. Or explain. Or perhaps stop generalizing?

My best guess is that Spag here means that Mexicans migrate in vast numbers. As do Poles.
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Postby Zohar » Sun May 27, 2007 8:00 pm UTC

Two calculus jokes (bad enough that they're good?):

All of the functions are at some party. Suddenly the door opens and derivative enters. All of the functions start running outside and shouting "He's going to derivate me! He will!!".
Only one function stays put and looks around smirking.
Derivative comes up to the function and asks "Why aren't you running away?"
It answers "I'm e^x! I don't need to be scared of you!"
The derivative laughs and replies "I'm d/dy."

--

Delta is sitting at home, watching TV being bored. The doorbell rings and it gets up to answer. Upon opening the door it finds Epsilon standing there.
"Epsilon! What are you doing here?" it asks.
"Oh, I was just in the neighborhood," it answers.
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Postby bbctol » Sun May 27, 2007 11:03 pm UTC

A newlywed husband is discouraged by his wife's obsession with mathematics. Afraid of being second fiddle to her profession, he finally confronts her: "Do you love math more than me?"
"Of course not, dear - I love you much more!"
Happy, although sceptical, he challenges her: "Well, then prove it!"
Pondering a bit, she responds: "Ok... Let epsilon be greater than zero..."
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Postby joeframbach » Sun May 27, 2007 11:11 pm UTC

A set of smooth functions threw a party, and everyone was invited. They had great games set up like limbo (for the functions with horizontal asymptotes) and pin the delta on the epsilon.
e^x was sitting in the corner by himself, and his close friend e^2x came over to see why he was distancing himself from the crowd. e^2x said to e^x, "Go and integrate yourself into the crowd," to which e^x replied, sobbing, "It won't make a difference!"
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Postby bitwiseshiftleft » Mon May 28, 2007 1:54 am UTC

joeframbach wrote:A set of smooth functions threw a party, and everyone was invited. They had great games set up like limbo (for the functions with horizontal asymptotes) and pin the delta on the epsilon.
e^x was sitting in the corner by himself, and his close friend e^2x came over to see why he was distancing himself from the crowd. e^2x said to e^x, "Go and integrate yourself into the crowd," to which e^x replied, sobbing, "It won't make a difference!"


Plus C!
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Postby ptveite » Mon May 28, 2007 2:57 am UTC

what's the integral of 1/CABIN dCABIN?


Houseboat! (logCabin + C)
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Postby hyperion » Mon May 28, 2007 10:10 am UTC

V (cylinder) = pi r^2 h

We have a pizza of radius "z" and height "a".

.'. V (pizza) = pi zz a
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Postby mister k » Mon May 28, 2007 11:47 am UTC

An engineer, a physicist and a statistician are in a hotel when a fire starts.

"Pour water on it!" Cries the engineer
"No, remove the oxygen!" Says the physicist.

The statistician, seeing their disagreement, frantically runs round the hotel starting fires

"What the hell are you doing?" The other two ask

"Creating a decent sample size."
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Postby Herman » Mon May 28, 2007 5:25 pm UTC

It is true that August Mobius was a very opinionated man. But it would be an exageration to say that he never could see both sides of a question.

Many aboriginal cultures have only come up with approximate values for many mathetmatical and physical constants. For example, 3 is known as Eskimo Pi.

Religion is complex. It has both real and imaginary components.

Jimmy Carter decided to start a rock band consisting of ex-Presidents. He recruited George Bush and Bill Clinton, but they still needed a drummer. Clinton suggested his vice president, who had after all come within a hair's breadth of the presidency himself. The band soon started getting gigs all the time, many of these at swanky country clubs and mansions. One particular venue had such a powerful sound system that all guests had to stay several dozen yards away from the speakers or suffer serious hearing impairment. On the day that the Ex-Presidents were to perform, the club hired several new butlers to serve the large number of guests who would attend. One in particular had not been informed about the unusual power of the speaker system. In the middle of a drum solo, he tragically attempted to walk in front of the speakers to bring someone a drink, and his brain suffered a massive hemorrhage. He was pronounced dead at the scene. The autopsy report would record, "The Al Gore rhythm killed Jeeves."
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Postby rejectedScott » Mon May 28, 2007 9:16 pm UTC

(This is a bit lame, and I saw it on a shirt once)

What do you get when you cross a cat with a lightbulb?

|cat| x |lightbulb| x sin(theta)
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Postby SpitValve » Mon May 28, 2007 9:21 pm UTC

rejectedScott wrote:What do you get when you cross a cat with a lightbulb?

|cat| x |lightbulb| x sin(theta)


In a direction orthogonal to both cat and lightbulb.



What happens if you cross a mosquito with a mountain climber?

You can't cross a scalar with a vector!
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Postby Zohar » Mon May 28, 2007 9:22 pm UTC

A friend of mine always wanted to create a matrix called MIT so he could calculate its kernel - kerMIT
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Postby crazyjimbo » Mon May 28, 2007 9:24 pm UTC

A mathemetician and an engineer attend a lecture by a physicist. The topic concerns Kulza-Klein theories involving physical processes that occur in spaces with dimensions of 9, 12 and even higher. The mathemetician is sitting, clearly enjoying the lecture, while the engineer is frowning and looking generally confused and puzzled. By the end the engineer has a terrible headache. At the end, the mathemetician comments about the wonderful lecture. The engineer says "How do you understand this stuff?" The mathematician replies: "I just visualize the process." But the engineer isn't satisfied: "How can you POSSIBLY visualize something that occurs in 9-dimensional space?" "Ah," says the mathematician, "it's easy, really. First visualize it in N-dimensional space, then let N go to 9."

Yea, I ripped this of the interwebs because I couldn't remember the wording. I'm not sure it has the groan factor needed for this thread...
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Postby Patashu » Mon May 28, 2007 10:30 pm UTC

A bumper sticker on the back of a car: If this appears blue you're going TOO FAST!!
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Postby crazyjimbo » Mon May 28, 2007 10:33 pm UTC

Corollary: If this appears red, I'm going too fast!
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Postby iw » Tue May 29, 2007 12:00 am UTC

Q: Why do Universities have Mathematics departments?

A: It's cheaper than institutionalizing all those people.
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Postby kira » Tue May 29, 2007 12:13 am UTC

Definition of a polynomial: a very hungry parrot.
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Postby Xial » Tue May 29, 2007 12:22 am UTC

Here are some fun flash movies with math jokes: http://www.albinoblacksheep.com/flash/einsteinjokes

Edit:Fixed link.
Last edited by Xial on Tue May 29, 2007 2:15 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby hyperion » Tue May 29, 2007 10:35 am UTC

kira wrote:Definition of a polynomial: a very hungry parrot.


What happened to the parrot? Polynomial. Polygon.
Peshmerga wrote:A blow job would probably get you a LOT of cheeseburgers.
But I digress.
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Postby evilbeanfiend » Tue May 29, 2007 10:39 am UTC

skeptical scientist missed one of the maths/colour related jokes

Q: What's big, grey, and proves the uncountability of the reals?
A: Cantor's diagonal elephant.
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Postby skeptical scientist » Tue May 29, 2007 1:57 pm UTC

evilbeanfiend wrote:skeptical scientist missed one of the maths/colour related jokes

Q: What's big, grey, and proves the uncountability of the reals?
A: Cantor's diagonal elephant.

I only got the fruit-related ones.
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Postby evilbeanfiend » Tue May 29, 2007 2:03 pm UTC

of course fruit > elephants

a lot more here btw.

http://www.ams.org/notices/200501/fea-dundes.pdf
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Postby Scarblac » Tue May 29, 2007 2:39 pm UTC

mister k wrote:An engineer, a physicist and a statistician are in a hotel when a fire starts.

A chemist wakes up at night, and comes to the startling discovery that his room is on fire. He grabs a bucket, fills it with water, and quenches the fire. Relieved, he goes back to sleep.

A physicist wakes up at night, and comes to the startling discovery that his room is on fire. He runs to his desk and starts calculating and drawing graphs; after some minutes, he takes a bucket, fills it with exactly 8.56 liter of water, and throws it in the exactly correct trajectory to let it cover the fire. Relieved, he goes back to sleep.

A mathematician wakes up at night, and comes to the startling discovery that his room is on fire. He runs to his desk, and starts calculating, using many sheets of paper. Eventually, he writes "QED" and exclaims, "there is a solution!" Relieved, he goes back to sleep.
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Postby b hythloday » Tue May 29, 2007 11:22 pm UTC

How do you tell a parrot that he is Scottish royalty?

Polly, you're a thane!
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