## Monthly archives for April, 2014

# What’s the Deal with EuclidR...

An illustration from Oliver Byrne’s 1847 edition of Euclid’s Elements. Euclid’s fourth postulate states that all the right angles in this diagram are congruent. Image: Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons.
Why the heck do we need a postulate that says that all right angles are equal to one another? You probably remember lear [...]

# Bad Statistics: Ignore or Call Out?

3-D pie charts are usually misleading. Image: Smallman12q, via Wikimedia Commons.
Andrew Gelman has been wondering how much time he should spend criticizing crappy research, and so am I. He wrote the post after a discussion with Jeff Leek of Simply Statistics about replication and criticism. Harsh criticism of preliminary studies could discou [...]

# The Slowest Way to Draw a Lute

Man Drawing a Lute, by Albrecht Dürer. Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons.
Last month, I went to a talk by mathematician Annalisa Crannell of Franklin and Marshall College called Math and Art: the good, the bad, and the pretty. She talked about how mathematical ideas of perspective show up in art and how it can help us create and appreciate [...]

# Graham’s Number Is Too Big for Me to ...

I was going to write an April Fool’s Day post with the title “Mathematicians Declare Graham’s Number Equal to Infinity.” Graham’s number is really big, but of course, it’s precisely 0% as big as infinity. On the other hand, everything we touch is finite, so in some sense, Graham’s number is probably & [...]

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