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From: Steve Holden on 3 Apr 2010 13:13 Mensanator wrote: [...] > When dealing with crackpots, it does not help to use the > wrong arguments. [...] Correct. Unfortunately, it doesn't help to use the right ones either. In fact, that could almost be a definition of "crackpot" (and alas now we approach territory where we risk offending the religious, so I will cease and desist). regards Steve -- Steve Holden +1 571 484 6266 +1 800 494 3119 See PyCon Talks from Atlanta 2010 http://pycon.blip.tv/ Holden Web LLC http://www.holdenweb.com/ UPCOMING EVENTS: http://holdenweb.eventbrite.com/
From: Patrick Maupin on 3 Apr 2010 13:15 On Apr 3, 11:59 am, Emile van Sebille <em... (a)fenx.com> wrote:> On 4/3/2010 8:46 AM Patrick Maupin said... > > > On Apr 3, 9:43 am, "Martin P. Hellwig"> IMHO, the crackpot in this > > regard is actually partially right, > >> multiplication does mean that the number must get bigger, however for > >> fractions you multiply four numbers, two numerators and two > >> denominators. The resulting numerator and denominator by this > >> multiplication get indeed bigger. > > > That argument is great! Just make sure that you've managed to leave > > before the class has to learn about irrational numbers that don't > > *have* numerators and denominators ;-) > > Ahh, but no ones arguing that irrational numbers don't get bigger -- > even before you multiply them! True, but being an optimist, just as (-1 * -1 == +1) (which admittedly, I had a hard time trying to explain to my father years ago), and just as (not not True == True) and just as multiplying two imaginary numbers can have a real result, I was hoping that it would also be the case that having a discussion with an irrational person about irrational numbers could have a rational result. Of course, that hope was incredibly naive of me, since most operations with irrational numbers which do not involve either closely related irrational numbers or zero will also result in irrational numbers. I think induction will show that this property (that an irrational number can make any result that it is involved in irrational) can also be applied to irrational people and discussions. ;-) Regards, Pat
From: MRAB on 3 Apr 2010 13:39 Patrick Maupin wrote: > On Apr 3, 11:59 am, Emile van Sebille <em... (a)fenx.com> wrote:>> On 4/3/2010 8:46 AM Patrick Maupin said... >> >>> On Apr 3, 9:43 am, "Martin P. Hellwig"> IMHO, the crackpot in this >>> regard is actually partially right, >>>> multiplication does mean that the number must get bigger, however for >>>> fractions you multiply four numbers, two numerators and two >>>> denominators. The resulting numerator and denominator by this >>>> multiplication get indeed bigger. >>> That argument is great! Just make sure that you've managed to leave >>> before the class has to learn about irrational numbers that don't >>> *have* numerators and denominators ;-) >> Ahh, but no ones arguing that irrational numbers don't get bigger -- >> even before you multiply them! > > True, but being an optimist, just as (-1 * -1 == +1) (which > admittedly, I had a hard time trying to explain to my father years > ago), and just as (not not True == True) and just as multiplying two > imaginary numbers can have a real result, I was hoping that it would > also be the case that having a discussion with an irrational person > about irrational numbers could have a rational result. Of course, > that hope was incredibly naive of me, since most operations with > irrational numbers which do not involve either closely related > irrational numbers or zero will also result in irrational numbers. I > think induction will show that this property (that an irrational > number can make any result that it is involved in irrational) can also > be applied to irrational people and discussions. ;-) > The square root of 2 is irrational, but if you multiply it by itself then the result isn't irrational, so not all operations involving irrational numbers will result in an irrational result (unless that's what you mean by "closely related irrational numbers").
From: Patrick Maupin on 3 Apr 2010 13:56 On Apr 3, 12:39 pm, MRAB <pyt... (a)mrabarnett.plus.com> wrote:> Patrick Maupin wrote: > > On Apr 3, 11:59 am, Emile van Sebille <em... (a)fenx.com> wrote:> >> On 4/3/2010 8:46 AM Patrick Maupin said... > > >>> On Apr 3, 9:43 am, "Martin P. Hellwig"> IMHO, the crackpot in this > >>> regard is actually partially right, > >>>> multiplication does mean that the number must get bigger, however for > >>>> fractions you multiply four numbers, two numerators and two > >>>> denominators. The resulting numerator and denominator by this > >>>> multiplication get indeed bigger. > >>> That argument is great! Just make sure that you've managed to leave > >>> before the class has to learn about irrational numbers that don't > >>> *have* numerators and denominators ;-) > >> Ahh, but no ones arguing that irrational numbers don't get bigger -- > >> even before you multiply them! > > > True, but being an optimist, just as (-1 * -1 == +1) (which > > admittedly, I had a hard time trying to explain to my father years > > ago), and just as (not not True == True) and just as multiplying two > > imaginary numbers can have a real result, I was hoping that it would > > also be the case that having a discussion with an irrational person > > about irrational numbers could have a rational result. Of course, > > that hope was incredibly naive of me, since most operations with > > irrational numbers which do not involve either closely related > > irrational numbers or zero will also result in irrational numbers. I > > think induction will show that this property (that an irrational > > number can make any result that it is involved in irrational) can also > > be applied to irrational people and discussions. ;-) > > The square root of 2 is irrational, but if you multiply it by itself > then the result isn't irrational, so not all operations involving > irrational numbers will result in an irrational result (unless that's > what you mean by "closely related irrational numbers"). Yes, I think I am closely related to myself. But in addition to that particular disclaimer, I qualified the statement with "most" and I also mentioned that zero is special. I stand by the assertion that if you take a random assortment of non-zero numbers, some irrational, some rational, and a random assortment of numeric operators, that most operations involving an irrational number will have an irrational result. Regards, Pat
From: Andreas Waldenburger on 3 Apr 2010 15:21
On Sat, 03 Apr 2010 13:13:38 -0400 Steve Holden <steve (a)holdenweb.com>wrote: > Correct. Unfortunately, it doesn't help to use the right ones either. > In fact, that could almost be a definition of "crackpot" (and alas now > we approach territory where we risk offending the religious, so I will > cease and desist). Except that you didn't. ;) /W -- INVALID? DE! |