Posts tagged ‘binary’

Four, or F**k You?

If you asked a student, “How many sides does a quadrilaterals have?” and you received the following response…

Middle Finger

…well, you might be upset.

But perhaps the student learned to count in binary on her fingers, where the right thumb is the register for 1, the right index finger is the register for 2, the right middle finger is the register for 4, and so on. Then the response above would be appropriate, despite appearances.

If you then asked, “Into how many regions will a circle be divided if 6 points are placed randomly on a circle, and each point is connected to every other point?” the student might appear to wave at you — or, she may just be telling you (correctly) that 31 regions would be created by holding up all 5 fingers. (In binary counting, all five fingers add up to 1 + 2 + 4 + 8 + 16 = 31.)

My sons learned to count in binary when, at age 5, they asserted that the highest you can count on your fingers is 10. “Actually,” I told them, “You can count as high as 1,023 on your fingers. If you want, I can show you how.”

Of course, they wanted to learn, and I was happy to teach them. There are at least four good reasons for teaching students to count in other bases, and “Dr. Peterson” at the Math Forum had this to say:

I taught my son to multiply in binary before he really learned it in decimal, because it’s easier; you have only the algorithm (method) with no multiplication tables to learn.

Knowing how bases work helps to develop number sense while clarifying the concept of place value. And not understanding place value leads to things like this…

My former boss shared this video with me on Facebook recently, and he asked,

Does this work with other numbers?

I had a fun time playing with that question, so let me now give you a chance to think about it. Can you find another pair of numbers that produce analogous incorrect results when multiplying and dividing? And if you’re feeling really ambitious, can you generalize to determine what types of number pairs will always give these kinds of incorrect results?

January 3, 2018 at 6:18 am Leave a comment

Math Jokes from Reader’s Digest

All of the following jokes were borrowed from Reader’s Digest, which I’m sure they borrowed from elsewhere.

Did you hear about the mathematician who’s afraid of negative numbers?
He’ll stop at nothing to avoid them.

How easy is it to count in binary?
It’s as easy as 01 10 11.

A Roman walks into the bar, holds up two fingers, and says, “Five beers, please.”

How many bananas can you eat if your stomach is empty?
Just one. Then it’s not empty anymore.

What do you call a number that sleepwalks?
A roamin’ numeral.
(And a nun who sleepwalks?
A roamin’ Catholic.)

Knock! Knock!
Who’s there?
Convex who?
Convex go to prison!

September 8, 2014 at 5:45 pm 1 comment

Binarily We Roll Along…

If you were born after November 11, 1911, and before the start of this millenium, then you’ve experienced 36 binary dates in your lifetime; there were 9 each in 2000, 2001, 2010, and 2011. I’ve collected several binary jokes, and I was going to save them until the next binary date… but since that’s not until January 1, 2100 — a date for which I most likely I won’t be around; and if I am, God help me if I’m still trolling out math jokes on this blog — I figure I better share these jokes now.

I don’t know how many jokes are contained in this post, but you can count them. Luckily, counting in binary is as easy as 1, 10, 11, …

Perhaps my favorite binary joke:

01000001 00100000 01101101 01100001 01101110 00100000
01110111 01100001 01101100 01101011 01110011 00100000
01101001 01101110 01110100 01101111 00100000 01100001
00100000 01100010 01110010 01100001 00101110

A binary is a two-headed canary.

When Paul asked Saul how much he’d pay for the following book, Saul answered, “Two bits!”

Binary Colors Cover

The above silliness is a follow-up to the Gauss® jeans ad that I created and the Leibniz jeans ad that was posted at Rhapsody in Numbers.

November 11, 2012 at 8:45 pm 1 comment

Yo Momma Is So Bad At Math…

The following insult about yo momma is funny, I don’t care who you are.

There are 3 types of people in the world: those who can count, and yo momma.

Of course, it may not be understood by people who don’t recognize the reference, but who cares? Throwing out a “yo momma” joke is mostly for the entertainment of the insulter, not the insultee. And besides, why would you associate with people who don’t understand the reference?

One of the common jokes using the format above is…

There are 10 kinds of people in the world: those who understand binary, and those who don’t.

And the follow-up to that one is…

There are 10 kinds of people in the world: those who understand binary, and 9 others.

While we’re on the subject of binary, here’s one of my original “yo momma” jokes:

Yo momma is so dumb, she thinks binary is a two-headed canary.

There are lots and lots of “yo momma” jokes out there. But did you know there was an entire genre of yo momma math and science jokes? Google can help you find many, many more, but the following are some of my favorites.

Yo momma is so fat, she is proof that the universe is expanding exponentially.

Yo momma is so fat, her volume is an improper integral.

Yo momma is so infinitely fat, she can eat as much as she wants and not gain any weight.

Yo momma is so fat, she took geometry because she heard there was gonna be π.

Yo momma is so fat, the ratio of her circumference to diameter is 4.

Yo momma is so fat, in a love triangle she’d be the hypotenuse.

Yo momma is so nasty, the shortest distance between her and any person is 50 cents.

Yo momma is so ugly, Pythagoras wouldn’t touch her with a 3-4-5 triangle.

Yo momma is so dumb, she doesn’t know the difference between a doughnut and a coffee cup.

Yo momma is so dumb, she thinks crossing a mosquito and a mountain climber yields |mosquito| × |mountain climber| × sin(θ).

Yo momma is so dumb, she serves beer in Klein bottles.

Yo momma is so dumb, she thinks that if two people go into a hotel and three come out, the first two must have pro-created.

Yo momma is so far behind the times, she thinks the best feature of her solar-powered calculator is the flashlight.

Yo momma is so dense, she refracts light.

June 14, 2012 at 11:55 am 3 comments

Brief Q & A

Even Georg Cantor would have trouble counting the number of mathematician light bulb jokes…

Q: How many mathematicians does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Just one. She gives it to three physicists, thus reducing it to a problem that has already been solved.

And it’s rumored that the following joke is what caused Gottfried Leibniz to lose favor with George I…

Q: What happened in the binary race?
A: Zero won.

August 19, 2010 at 12:28 am Leave a comment

Rounding the Bases

Last week, I saw an amazing presentation by Jim Tanton. It involved an “exploding machine,” where dots placed in a box couple and explode, forming a new dot (or dots) in an adjacent box. For instance, he described a 1 ← 2 machine, in which two dots placed in a box explode and become one dot in the box to the left. Playing with these machines leads to a lot of mathematics about bases. Honestly, I’ll never be able to do this justice with a text description — so if you have an hour to spend with some cool math, check out Dots and Boxes for yourself.

Speaking of bases, I’ve recently heard a couple of new twists on old jokes. Nearly everyone knows this old classic:

Why is 6 afraid of 7? Because 7 8 9.

But I recently heard a fantastic twist:

Why don’t jokes work in base 8? Because 7 10 11.

And another golden oldie, which I first saw on a t-shirt:

There are 10 types of people in the world: those who understand binary, and those who don’t.

But I happen to think the following meta-joke is much funnier, although that could be a result of having just recently discovered it:

There are 10 types of people in the world: those who understand binary… and nine others.

August 7, 2010 at 3:37 am 1 comment

About MJ4MF

The Math Jokes 4 Mathy Folks blog is an online extension to the book Math Jokes 4 Mathy Folks. The blog contains jokes submitted by readers, new jokes discovered by the author, details about speaking appearances and workshops, and other random bits of information that might be interesting to the strange folks who like math jokes.

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Math Jokes 4 Mathy Folks is available from Amazon, Borders, Barnes & Noble, NCTM, Robert D. Reed Publishers, and other purveyors of exceptional literature.

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