Fishin’ for an April Fools Math Joke
My friend and former boss Jim Rubillo sent me the following email last night:
I am cleaning, and I found this book that you might want: One Million Random Numbers in Ascending Order. Do you want it, or should I throw it away?
Seemed like an odd book, and I thought he might have gotten the title wrong since RAND Corporation published A Million Random Digits with 100,000 Normal Deviates in 1955. (Incidentally, you should visit that book’s page on www.amazon.com, where you’ll find many fantastic reviews, such as, “Once you’ve read it from start to finish, you can go back and read it in a different order, and it will make just as much sense as your original read!” from Bob the Frog, and, “…with so many terrific random digits, it’s a shame they didn’t sort them, to make it easier to find the one you’re looking for,” from A Curious Reader.)
Knowing that Jim is a stats guy, it seemed plausible. A little confused, I wrote back:
Is it literally just a list of random numbers? If so, I’ll pass. But if there’s something more interesting about it, then maybe?
It’s a sequel to The Complete Book of Even Primes.
And so it goes, with April Fools even afflicting the math jokes world.
Thank goodness he didn’t tape a fish to my back.