I'm in a talent show tomorrow. Show me a cool math proof.

  • Thread starter Jamin2112
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  • #1
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I thought about doing a proof of the Pythagorean Theorem, a proof that the harmonic series is unbounded, a proof that e^π > π^e, a proof that e^(b*i) = cos(b) + i*sin(b), a proof that √2 is irrational, but honestly, none of those are cool enough.

Please show me a cool proof that an ordinary audience could understand.
 

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  • #2
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Maybe a proof of Euclid's theorem of the infinitude of primes, or a proof of Euler's identity..?
 
  • #3
chiro
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Monty Hall Problem - its not intuitive and a lot of people (even including statisticians) can doubt the results even due to its counter intuitiveness
 
  • #4
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Monty Hall Problem - its not intuitive and a lot of people (even including statisticians) can doubt the results even due to its counter intuitiveness

hmmmm .... the only problem with the Monty Hall Problem is that the setup is hard to explain. You have to explain to rules of the game 4 or 5 times before the audience understands how it works.
 
  • #5
chiro
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hmmmm .... the only problem with the Monty Hall Problem is that the setup is hard to explain. You have to explain to rules of the game 4 or 5 times before the audience understands how it works.

What kind of audience are you speaking to?
 
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  • #8
mathwonk
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describe 4 dimensional spheres?
 
  • #10
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A simple Diophantine equation? a^b=b^a is fun, and pretty easy to understand. It also has the attribute of not being part of any curriculum, so even the advanced audience members won't know the answer until you prove it. (unless they are fast)
 
  • #11
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A simple Diophantine equation? a^b=b^a is fun, and pretty easy to understand. It also has the attribute of not being part of any curriculum, so even the advanced audience members won't know the answer until you prove it. (unless they are fast)

is there someway to solve this algorithmically? without just seeing that it's 2 and 4?
 
  • #13
Landau
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How does reproducing a proof given by someone on this forum show that you have talent? I mean, doesn't this defeat the purpose of a talent show?
 
  • #14
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How does reproducing a proof given by someone on this forum show that you have talent? I mean, doesn't this defeat the purpose of a talent show?

> Implying that talent and originality are the same thing.
 
  • #15
LCKurtz
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You could entertain them with non-proofs of true theorems. One of my favorites is the "long division" method proving the remainder of a polynomial p(x) upon division by (x - a ) is p(a)

Proof
Code:
         p
      _______________
(x-a)/  p(x)
        p(x) - p(a)
           __________

                p(a)
 

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