0019: "George Clinton"

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pkthunder
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0019: "George Clinton"

Postby pkthunder » Wed Feb 07, 2007 5:43 pm UTC

George Clinton

I suppose he had to get some type of undergraduate degree in order to go on to get his M.F. (Master of Funk).

Samej
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Postby Samej » Wed Feb 07, 2007 7:44 pm UTC

However; Brian May (the guitarist from Queen) is an astrophysicist currnetly studing for a phD. FACT.

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Andrew
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Postby Andrew » Wed Feb 07, 2007 8:22 pm UTC

Yes, it always catches me offguard if I'm going through the science section of the university bookshop to see a book, in amongst all the usual things and people I've never heard of, by the bloke from Queen and the guy who used to be the Gamesmaster.

I suspect one of my friends only took a physics degree because Brian May had one.

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DorkRawk
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Postby DorkRawk » Thu Mar 08, 2007 6:55 am UTC

I was looking through Wikipedia and came across an article on George Clinton that says that he DID get a B.A. in Math. Could this comic be about something true that's so ridiculous that it's funnier to simply wish it were true?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Clinton_%28funk_musician%29

I know Wikipedia isn't always the most credible source, but this seems like something that would have been weeded out if it were just randomly thrown into the George Clinton article.

Yorgan
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Postby Yorgan » Thu Mar 08, 2007 2:22 pm UTC

Google can only find one trace of the idea outside of wikipedia:

http://www.showtimetickets.com/concerts ... linton.jsp

The text on that page and on the wikipedia article are clearly related. I'd therefore argue theres two likely explanations.

George Clinton really did get a BA of Mathematics.
Its a pretty obscure piece of trivia.
It therefore only appears (in cyberspace) on a single website.
Whoever was writing the Wikipedia article did their research, finding and using the material from that site (or possibly, a 3rd common source that they both used; say either a real life biography, or a website that no longer comes up high on google.)
xkcd read the wikipedia article and decided to make a joke about it.

OR

George Clinton doesn't have a BA in Mathematics.
xkcd made up the joke 'ex nihilo', deriving it purely on his brilliant, warped sense of humour.
An xkcd fan subtly edited the George Clinton wikipedia article in response to the joke.
Because its such an obscure and odd thing to lie about, no one who a) knows enough about George Clinton to be sure its false AND b) reads and edits wikipedia regularly, has noticed it and reverted it.
The person writing the second site took their bio blurb from wikipedia.

If I knew more about the way wikipedia sites sources, or could be bothered looking at revision histories, I could probably do better than that...

P.S. Of course, xkcd could easily solve this mystery for us. But then again, maybe this is all part of his not-so-secret plan to establish the urban legend in question, so he's probably not a trustworthy source :P
Last edited by Yorgan on Thu Mar 08, 2007 2:29 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.

bippy
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Postby bippy » Thu Mar 08, 2007 2:28 pm UTC

Most community colleges don't offer B.A.s. It's probably someone from here who did it.

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DorkRawk
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Postby DorkRawk » Thu Mar 08, 2007 3:10 pm UTC

But now I want it to be true so badly, I believe it!

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simen
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Postby simen » Thu Mar 08, 2007 11:46 pm UTC

The B.A bit was added by the user Daviddec on the fifth of January, this year. It is extremely likely that it's a small matter of vandalism.

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MurdocRocks
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Postby MurdocRocks » Tue Apr 24, 2007 2:01 pm UTC

Haha!

Check out George Clinton on Wiki... Apparently he got one from UCLA... but a citation is needed, how about linking to the comic? lol

tron
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Postby tron » Wed Apr 25, 2007 5:13 am UTC

Yorgan wrote:George Clinton doesn't have a BA in Mathematics.
xkcd made up the joke 'ex nihilo', deriving it purely on his brilliant, warped sense of humour.
An xkcd fan subtly edited the George Clinton wikipedia article in response to the joke.


Yeah, unfortunately it's the latter option. I'm going to revert this...

Just some examples, the same user, on the same day, also changed Sergei Bubka's article, and also the article on Jan Johnson.

I know, I know, it's very sad to come to terms with this :)

The other two edits were more clearly vandalism, and got reverted fast. As much as I appreciate a good joke, it's stuff like this that is just plain annoying, because it "slips through the cracks" for so long.

I guess the point of humor is: imagine if some high school student did a presentation with this little-known-fact thrown in, thanks to it being on Wikipedia?

hitokiriilh
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Laplace transform

Postby hitokiriilh » Fri Aug 10, 2007 9:52 pm UTC

Ok, I feel terrible for saying this - especially as a first post - but the math in the "George Clinton" comic isn't correct. Aside from the problem with the variables - specifically that for the inverse Laplace transform, as stated, shows an integration over t making the left side a function of s instead of t - the inverse Laplace transform isn't quite right. The inverse Fourier transform is nothing more than a trivial change of variables and change of sign in the exponent relative to the Fourier transform (functionally, the inverse is just the complex conjugate of the transform itself), however the inverse Laplace transform is not obtained so trivially. It actually involves contour integration and generally involves applying residue theorem to solve.

Now I just feel like an ass, but it had to be said! >.< Honestly, nothing but respect for this comic! :D

Reference: http://mathworld.wolfram.com/BromwichIntegral.html

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arbivark
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Postby arbivark » Sun Aug 12, 2007 3:27 am UTC

welcome, hitokiriilh.
the math error was part of the joke of the comic.
xkcd comics are funny at many levels.
-most- of them are funny if you don't know math or the various injokes being referred to, but funnier still if you get the injokes, which is one reason i joined this forum - it sometimes explains things i missed, e.g. i don't do math.

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PS_Mouse
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Postby PS_Mouse » Sun Aug 12, 2007 3:35 am UTC

hitokiriilh, I think you have found yourself in the correct corner of the internets
I think I used to have a porpoise; then again, that might have been a dream. | Eternal life comes to those who wait
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Never forget how the brave Tenzing Norgay outsmarted the evil Edmund Hillary

hitokiriilh
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^_^

Postby hitokiriilh » Sun Aug 12, 2007 4:01 am UTC

Thanks for the warm welcome! :D I've definitely been a fan of this comic for awhile. Was bored at work, so I joined the forum (originally to answer a post about conservation of energy in relativity...which I have still yet to answer XD) and started rereading it from the start. That's when I noticed comic 19.

Anywho, I certainly like this bit of the intertubes. :)

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Chase Watkins
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YEAH

Postby Chase Watkins » Sat Sep 15, 2007 11:01 pm UTC

I am going to see George Clinton tonight! :D
I am leaving in ten minutes and I just looked up him on google and found this comic, I love this one :)

Random832
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Re: "George Clinton" discussion

Postby Random832 » Sat Mar 15, 2008 4:41 am UTC

(lol necro, yes i know, but seriously)

Is the original from before he did inversion to make the text on the blackboard appear white on a black background available anywhere? This seems to be the first comic where he used that effect.

zenten
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Re: Laplace transform

Postby zenten » Sun Mar 16, 2008 1:34 pm UTC

hitokiriilh wrote:Ok, I feel terrible for saying this - especially as a first post - but the math in the "George Clinton" comic isn't correct. Aside from the problem with the variables - specifically that for the inverse Laplace transform, as stated, shows an integration over t making the left side a function of s instead of t - the inverse Laplace transform isn't quite right. The inverse Fourier transform is nothing more than a trivial change of variables and change of sign in the exponent relative to the Fourier transform (functionally, the inverse is just the complex conjugate of the transform itself), however the inverse Laplace transform is not obtained so trivially. It actually involves contour integration and generally involves applying residue theorem to solve.

Now I just feel like an ass, but it had to be said! >.< Honestly, nothing but respect for this comic! :D

Reference: http://mathworld.wolfram.com/BromwichIntegral.html


That's because George Clinton only has a B.A. in math, instead of a B.S.c.


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