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Diagonal Frog

  1. Jan 10, 2005 #1
    I love Kai Krause's quote "A good analogy is like a diagonal frog"....to me it's one of those oxymorons...like "astronomically small" or "authentic replica"

    Is that why it's so popular...because it's a clever oxymoron...or did this guy Kai Krause have another intent for the quote that I haven't come up with yet?

    I tried searching the net for the meaning of the quote, but all it ever says online is that Kai Krause made it up....and that it has something to do with Philosophy which is why I put it in this section

    I also noticed someone had a PhysicsForums "post signature" that was this quote..perhaps that person or somebody else knows?

    Anton
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 10, 2005 #2
    It's not an oxymoron. "Diagonal frog" just has several possible interpretations and doesn't make a whole lot of sense. Kai Krause is drawing a humorously bad analogy to describe a good analogy, for the purpose of irony. It could be interpreted as an argument against the effectiveness of analogies in general, but I think it's just a flippant joke.
     
  4. Jan 10, 2005 #3

    hypnagogue

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    Don't know anything about the origin or original context of the quote, I just happened to stumble upon it on the web one day. I agree, it's pretty witty.
     
  5. Jan 10, 2005 #4

    Moonbear

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    I suppose it must mean that since diagonal frogs don't exist (or the idea is nonsense, or something like that), good analogies don't exist either.
     
  6. Jan 10, 2005 #5

    hypnagogue

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    I don't think it's meant to be a statement about actual analogies. My interpretation has always been that it's just meant to be humorous-- the author tries to give us an idea of what a good analogy is by using an analogy himself, but winds up writing an exceptionally bad/nonsensical one rather than a good one.
     
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