Truman Fed Me Math Fodder

16 June 2013

Truman went to R Place for his skillet. Stopped at grain elevator to get a bucket of corn for the squirrels.

Water elevators are hurt by the boxcar. The per bushel price for corn and beans took him by surprise.

Truman fed me math fodder on Father Day’s 02013.

Two qubits… (0) Why? (1) SCREAM jobs

4 May 2012

It’s May 4th and my last posting was five days ago on April 29th. Summer break is approaching and I don’t know how much time this blog is going to get. Only time will tell (Duh! I know).


It’s graduation season. I’m excited about the future is a frequently encountered phrase and everytime I hear it I’d like to ask Why? I use the phrase frequently because I am excited about the future. Why? Because I’m a futurist and that’s exciting.

[qubit::1] has a posting titled “STEM Help Wanted”. The posting was about jobs, but again the STEM acronym sent me on a STEM, CSTEM, STEAM, CSTEAM, SCREAM detour.

STEM help wanted? Heck, yeah. I want stem cells to come to my rescue on an as needed basis. When I see STEM, I see the stock symbol for StemCells, Inc. [Note: I a nanoiota-sized STEM shareholder.]

Switch STEM to SCREAM and the CTEq headline morphs into SCREAM Help Wanted. SCREAM includes ‘Computing’ and ‘Robotics’. Scream “Help Wanted” and it morphs into a HELP WANTED scream.

The ‘C’ in SCREAMers

13 April 2012

The STEM and STEAM acronyms have become popular acronyms here in the early part of the 21st century. [If I’ve said this n times, I’ve seen it ++n times.]

I’ve never liked the STEM acronym. The first time I saw it I immediately asked “Where’s the Computing?” [And this is said out loud mimicking the way the old Wendy’s lady said “Where’s the Beef?” in those old Wendy’s commercials.] The same “Where’s the Computing?” question applies to the STEAM acronym. Sometime not that long ago I subjected the STEM and STEAM acronyms to the following question: “Where’s the Robotics?”

21st STEM and STEAM depend on Computing, so I originally proposed changing STEM and STEAM to CSTEM and CSTEAM, respectively. There three immediate problems: (0) CSTEM and CSTEAM are not really acronyms. (1) STEM and STEAM are too embedded in our society to change them (i.e. they’re immutable). (2) Where’s the Robotics?

Problem (1) might be impossible to repair, so I’m going to ignore that it exists. Problems (0) and (2) are eliminated with use of the SCREAM acronym. Let the Technology morph into technologies and bury it in the sciences (e.g. biotechnology and nanotechnology), the computing, the robotics, the engineering, the art and the mathematics.

I recently used STEMers and STEAMers to refer to scientists, technologists, engineers, artists, and mathematicians. SCREAMers include those plus roboticists and… oops… computerists? computists? compueers? computicians? computerologists? In those infamous grunts of Homer Simpson… D’oh! Hmm… It would be fun to be able to rewind to when there were no non-human computers and refer to the ‘C’ in SCREAMers as computers. SCREAMers are scientists, computers [humans], roboticists, engineers, artists, and mathematicians.

The ‘C’omputing in SCREAM includes both human and non-human computers. 21st century STEM, STEAM and SCREAM depend on all of us being “computers.”

The following was copied from…

The first use of the word “computer” was recorded in 1613, referring to a person who carried out calculations, or computations, and the word continued with the same meaning until the middle of the 20th century. From the end of the 19th century the word began to take on its more familiar meaning, a machine that carries out computations.

Pi Day 02012 Plan

30 December 2011

I’ve been celebrating Pi Days since 02005 and I’ve come up with Pi Day 02012 Plan. My goal is to celebrate Pi Days up through 02016 and then self publish a book documenting my Pi Day experiences.

Miscellaneous Geekiness on 11/01/10

1 November 2010

Binary date and time… If we’re naughty and use a 2-digit year, then 11/01/10 (today) is a binary date. In the DD/MM/YY format 01/11/10 is palindromic. [Note: DD/MM/YY format is popular outside of the United States.] I’m looking forward to 11/10/10 and 11/11/10, which will be the last binary dates until 01/01/11.

Pi sighting… The Arizona Republic reported that Arizona has “3.14 million registered voters.” 3.14 is Pi rounded to the nearest hundredth.

Nano moment… I watched “The Tingler” on Halloween. During the movie Dr. Chapin said he was going to inject himself with “100 micro milligrams” of what I think was LSD. “The Tingler” was made in 01958. If it had been made in 02010, Dr. Chapin might have said he was
going to inject 100 nanograms of drug.

Tweet milestone… On 02010.10.30 my @mathbabbler tweet counter hit one kilotweet. It took 509 days to reach that milestone.

Date and time I told them so… Last week during my “Computing Science for Non-CS Majors” course I giving an overview of the functions that come with STDC (Standard C) Library. I mentioned that C and C++ don’t provide direct support for date and time processing, but that the STDC Library comes with a collection of date and time functions. I told that class that I would be covering some of the date and time functions because programming date and time is hard. Today, on 1 November 02010, @slashdot tweeted the following.

iPhone Alarm Bug Leads To Mass European Sleep-in

We Solve For ‘x’ In This Class

12 October 2010

I had an Intermediate Algebra class on 11 October 02010 that started at noon. Prior to class I had read a press release from Geron Corporation announcing the “enrollment of the first patient in the company’s clinical trial of human embryonic stem cell.” I made mention of this historic moment near the start of the class and I had to immediately change the subject. We solve for ‘x’ in this class.

Prior to this embryonic stem cell moment, I had presented the QOTW (Quote Of The Week).

The rate at which a person can mature is directly proportional to the embarrassment he can tolerate. I have tolerated a lot — Doug Engelbart (01925-)

I briefly mention how the way we use computers today can be attributed to Doug Engelbart’s work back in the 1960s. I also mentioned that Engelbart is alive and still working on his lifelong dream of augmenting human intelligence.

Student: What do you mean by augmenting human intelligence?
Me: Make all people equal when it comes to IQ.
Student: What?!?!? How do we do this?
Me: Well, one example, the Googlers want a Google object implanted in our brains.
Student: What?!?!? Won’t we be like robots?
Me: We solve for ‘x’ in this class. Search Google for bill joy future and read Why the future doesn’t need us.

Prior to this embryonic stem cell moment, I mentioned that is was nice having two binary dates in a row. Yesterday was 10/10/10 and today was 10/11/10. Next month will be fun because we have 11/11/11 and 11/11/11 will be the last binary date until 1 January 02100. I wasn’t able to move of this topic until I pointed out the blasphemy of using a 2-digit year.

Me: I should be shot for using a 2-digit year. If anything, we should be using a 5-digit year.
Student: 5-digit year?!?!?!?
Me: Yes. 2010 is really 02010. But you don’t want to start using a 5-digit year because that will put you completely out-of-sync with the rest of society.
Student: Nobody uses a 5-digit year.
Me: We solve for ‘x’ in this class. Visit

At the very start of class (i.e. prior to this embryonic stem cell moment), I mentioned that The Simpsons last night was a mathy episode (Lisa coached baseball using statistics/probability) and I tweeted about it.

At this point the energy level of the class started its fall to zero because it was time for us to solve for ‘x’.

My 50s in Hex Equals My Dad’s 80s

19 June 2010

Truman is my dad. My birthday is at the end of May and Truman’s birthday is near the end of June. I turned 50 during May of 2007 and Truman turned 80 during June of 2007.

Now for number system tidbit… 50 in base-16 (hexadecimal, or hex) is 80 in base-10 (decimal) because five units of 16 plus zero ones equals eight units of 10 plus zero ones. In many programming languages, numbers prefixed with 0x (or 0X) are numbers being represented in hex. For example, 0x50 is 80, 0x51 is 81, 0x52 is 82, 0x53 is 83, …, 0x59 is 89.

Now to the point of this posting…During my 6th and Truman’s 9th decades of life, for 11 of every 12 months, my age in hex equals Truman’s decimal age. When Truman and I turn 90 and 60, respectively, my hex age will no longer equals Truman’s age (i.e. 0x60 is 96, not 90).

Note: This posting was published when I was 53 and Truman was 82 (i.e. my age in hex was one more than Truman’s age in decimal).