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The dog is absolutely right. Even me, never really connected to knot theory, have heard about the Jones polynomial.Found in Colin Adam's "The Knot Book," but found and copied/pasted from mathoverflow. (I added hyperlinks for the concepts needed to get the joke).
A mathematician walks into a bar accompanied by a dog and a cow......
Can you explain? I don't get it.The shortest math joke: Be ##ε < 0##.
It's about conventions. As ##n## is an integer, ##z## a complex number, ##p## a prime, ##i,j,k## indices or ##A_{ji}## a transposed matrix so is ##ε## in calculus the byword of something arbitrary small, but positive. Uncounted definitions and proofs about convergence, differentiation or continuity start with an ##ε > 0##.Can you explain? I don't get it.
OK, I know all that but it still doesn't make sense to me when preceded by the word "Be".It's about conventions. As ##n## is an integer, ##z## a complex number, ##p## a prime, ##i,j,k## indices or ##A_{ji}## a transposed matrix so is ##ε## in calculus the byword of something arbitrary small, but positive. Uncounted definitions and proofs about convergence, differentiation or continuity start with an ##ε > 0##.
Yeah, probably, sorry! I had 'let' first and wasn't sure for it sounds a little like 'let it be'. In German it's 'be' (conditional).OK, I know all that but it still doesn't make sense to me when preceded by the word "Be".
Perhaps it's a language problem; I might expect a proof to start with: "Let ##ε > 0##" in which case "Let ##ε < 0##" might be considered a joke.
OK, that makes sense now, and Google finds that "Let epsilon be less than zero" or similar seems to be quite an old joke, probably predating Google (in that the oldest reference I could find appears to be from 1994).Yeah, probably, sorry! I had 'let' first and wasn't sure for it sounds a little like 'let it be'. In German it's 'be' (conditional).