tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-264226589944705290.post6137967013085713145..comments2020-02-14T02:45:07.106-08:00Comments on God Plays Dice: Who gets credit for quadratic reciprocity?Michael Lugohttp://www.blogger.com/profile/15671307315028242949noreply@blogger.comBlogger13125tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-264226589944705290.post-47581042011072251972008-08-23T02:16:00.002-07:002008-08-23T02:16:00.002-07:00This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.note1https://www.blogger.com/profile/00244033208543850840noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-264226589944705290.post-72833206182508065512008-08-23T02:16:00.001-07:002008-08-23T02:16:00.001-07:00This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.note1https://www.blogger.com/profile/00244033208543850840noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-264226589944705290.post-31069069212887325332008-08-23T02:16:00.000-07:002008-08-23T02:16:00.000-07:00This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.note1https://www.blogger.com/profile/00244033208543850840noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-264226589944705290.post-51485903017964134232008-08-23T02:15:00.000-07:002008-08-23T02:15:00.000-07:00This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.note1https://www.blogger.com/profile/00244033208543850840noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-264226589944705290.post-77987256986467780042008-07-27T20:45:00.000-07:002008-07-27T20:45:00.000-07:00This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.note1https://www.blogger.com/profile/00244033208543850840noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-264226589944705290.post-71625651685292290302008-06-24T18:08:00.000-07:002008-06-24T18:08:00.000-07:00This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.Anonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-264226589944705290.post-57822032124223777962008-05-19T06:30:00.000-07:002008-05-19T06:30:00.000-07:00This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.Anonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-264226589944705290.post-9048970995989643692007-08-05T11:28:00.000-07:002007-08-05T11:28:00.000-07:00I'm curious about the "4 seconds" too. The guy's ...I'm curious about the "4 seconds" too. The guy's Wikipedia page says that the time includes "reading, calculating, and displaying the answer." One of the comments on the BBC news article is "Alexis is well known on the mental calculation circuit but not well-loved! He only ever seems to compete in obscure events in which hardly anyone else is interested, and the rules for which are dependent on him." The 13throot.com website (referenced by Wikipedia) is owned by Alexis, and the content is somewhat idiosyncratic. (Most of the edits to the Wikipedia page are anonymous, too...) Still, even with caveats it still seems impressive.Anonymoushttps://www.blogger.com/profile/10980219360516523067noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-264226589944705290.post-37594099611425099132007-08-04T13:14:00.000-07:002007-08-04T13:14:00.000-07:00Michael,I'm a bit suspicious of that -- is it even...Michael,<BR/><BR/>I'm a bit suspicious of that -- is it even possible to <I>read</I> a 100-digit number in four seconds?<BR/><BR/>That being said, I'm curious how much of that is due to better methods and how much of that is due to people who can "think faster".Michael Lugohttps://www.blogger.com/profile/15671307315028242949noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-264226589944705290.post-25780243124975369212007-08-04T13:08:00.000-07:002007-08-04T13:08:00.000-07:00On mental mathematics: the record for finding the ...On mental mathematics: the record for finding the root of a 100-digit number has fallen from <A HREF="http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/magazine/6913236.stm" REL="nofollow">23 minutes in 1970 to 4 seconds today</A>.Anonymoushttps://www.blogger.com/profile/10980219360516523067noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-264226589944705290.post-72110363900635286362007-08-04T10:13:00.000-07:002007-08-04T10:13:00.000-07:00anonymous:you're right that some mathematicians ha...anonymous:<BR/><BR/>you're right that <I>some</I> mathematicians had a reputation for being able to do great feats of mental arithmetic. In fact, someone compiled a list of <A HREF="http://bit-player.org/wp-content/gaussfiles/gauss-snippets.html" REL="nofollow">a hundred or more tellings</A> of the story where the young Gauss quickly found 1 + 2 + ... + 100 = 5050. Euler, of course, is another one who was known for mental arithmetic abilities; those stories are made even more impressive by the fact that he was <I>blind</I> at the end of his life.<BR/><BR/>I suspect that the facility for mental arithmetic is dying out, though, because calculators are more common; therefore there's a lot less use for skill at mental arithmetic. I'm not bad at it but I suspect that I am no match for my counterparts from an earlier era.<BR/><BR/>Rather paradoxically, I can do arithmetic quite well until you put dollar signs in front of the numbers. I'm not very good at handling money. (Fortunately, I have enough money and sufficiently cheap tastes that I can handle my financial affairs by the simple strategy of spending less than I earn; this is of course a luxury that is not available to everybody.)Michael Lugohttps://www.blogger.com/profile/15671307315028242949noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-264226589944705290.post-61766569419616058432007-08-04T10:05:00.000-07:002007-08-04T10:05:00.000-07:00As to mathematicians and arithmetic, supposedly Ga...As to mathematicians and arithmetic, supposedly Gauss could do amazing feats of mental arithmetic, and there have been a few other similarly gifted famous mathematicians, though obviously none were more famous than Gauss. Wikipedia tells a nice story of Gauss not only doing difficult mental arithmetic but consulting his mental table of logarithms in the process. Hamilton and von Neumann were adept mental arithmeticians. Von Neumann supposedly could mentally multiply two eight-digit numbers rapidly, having show prodigious arithmetic skills from early childhood, and once at age six asked his mother, who was lost in thought, "What are you calculating?". Going a bit further afield, Feynman is an example of a very mathematically-gifted (he was a Putnam fellow) physicist who reputedly did rapid mental arithmetic.Anonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-264226589944705290.post-86731544303593740342007-08-04T08:07:00.000-07:002007-08-04T08:07:00.000-07:00Only marginally related, but since you're after co...Only marginally related, but since you're after comments, here's one on mathematical fame and credit, by Hardy: "... on the whole the history of science is fair, and this is particularly true of mathematics. No other subject has such clear-cut or unanimously accepted standards, and the men who are remembered are almost always the men who merit it. Mathematical fame, if you have the cash to pay for it, is one of the soundest and steadiest of<BR/>investments." (A Mathematician's Apology, Part 8.)Anonymoushttps://www.blogger.com/profile/10980219360516523067noreply@blogger.com