# 0/0 Solved

1. Dec 7, 2006

### neutrino

...or so says Dr.James Anderson from the University of Reading. The school students to whom this was shown feel "cool" to have understood 'nullity' - the result of dividing zero by zero - for the first time in 1200 years.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/berkshire/content/articles/2006/12/06/divide_zero_feature.shtml

There's a video where the Dr.Anderson demonstrates this, but I'm not able to view it at the moment.

Decide for yourself. :tongue2:

2. Dec 7, 2006

### dontdisturbmycircles

Holy crap, screw L'Hospital's rule, this limit approaches nullity!

I will be tempted to use this new theorem on my next exam.

Last edited: Dec 7, 2006
3. Dec 7, 2006

### dontdisturbmycircles

I like UK Anonymous's answer, I think I will put it in my signature.

Last edited: Dec 7, 2006
4. Dec 7, 2006

### kesh

this isn't mathematics, it's just error detection

5. Dec 7, 2006

### Rach3

Wonder who programmed in that feature...

6. Dec 7, 2006

### Rach3

From his official webpage, he links to his personal webpage, where he links to his , err, "original research":

http://www.bookofparagon.com/News/News_00012.htm

Typical crackpottery. This "Reading University" must be some dirthole indeed, to be hiring loons like this.

7. Dec 7, 2006

### neutrino

If you're really bored, you could while away time by counting the number of times he's used the word 'Arithmetic(s)' in his first paper.

8. Dec 7, 2006

### kesh

though it's not a top class institution it's by no means a dirthole either. very hard to sack academics in the uk when they go bonkers though

9. Dec 7, 2006

### Rach3

I'm not familiar with any research there, the only thing I've heard about this Reading is this crackpot guy. Certainly they have an image problem now.

10. Dec 7, 2006

### kesh

judging from a quick glance at one of the papers, he's just put a symbol to the notion of undefined

11. Dec 7, 2006

### kesh

reading's computer science department got a 4 in the independent, uk wide, research assessment exercise 2001 (the most recent). the scale runs 1, 2, 3b, 3a, 4, 5, 5*; 5* being the highest.

his research group specialises in fault tolerance, and as i suggested above, i think he's just mathematically formalised division by zero errors, then presented it as some new mathematical discovery

i wonder if he knows about non-standard analysis

12. Dec 7, 2006

### Hurkyl

Staff Emeritus
Division by zero is undefined in nonstandard analysis too.

13. Dec 7, 2006

### kesh

sure, but i wonder if he's rediscovering division by infinitesimals, his strange historical reference an'all

14. Dec 7, 2006

### Kurdt

Staff Emeritus
The chances of me landing on an aeroplane are as close to nullity as you can get.

15. Dec 7, 2006

"...heart pace maker divides by zero, you're dead..."

:rofl:

16. Dec 7, 2006

### Anttech

I thought this comment was particularly funny:

:rofl:

17. Dec 7, 2006

'...proclaims Dr Anderson having demonstrated his solution on a whiteboard at Highdown School, in Emmer Green.'

:tongue2:

18. Dec 7, 2006

### Alkatran

BREAKING NEWS: Professor comes up with new word for "indeterminate"!!!!

Ridiculous. How can people get away with news stories like this? Also hilarious: he defined 1/0 to be infinity and -1/0 to be -infinity. No word on 1/-0 though! It's like that monthly division by 0 post, but on an international scale.

Last edited: Dec 7, 2006
19. Dec 7, 2006

### neutrino

Don't forget the symbol! :P

20. Dec 7, 2006

### 0rthodontist

There's something (well, more than 1 thing) amusing in the PDF he has for that. One of his axioms in there is that $$0^{-1} = \infty$$. I wonder what distinction he makes between 1/0 and 0-1.

Last edited: Dec 7, 2006