Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Math-Sci-Tech Trivia Part III

  1. Aug 9, 2004 #1

    Gokul43201

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    The rules :

    # no googling

    #no more than 2 questions may be answered by each person, one of which must be Q1 (which is open to all and may be attempted in addition to the other question).

    Q1. This is a toughie. In the words of Carl Jacobi,"Only _____, not I, not Cauchy, nor Gauss, knows what a perfectly rigorous proof is, but we learn itonly from him. When Gauss says he has proved something, I think it is very likely; when Cauchy says it, it is a fifty-fifty bet; when _____ says it, it is certain."

    Who was he talking about ?

    Q2. Greek Myth : He was the son of the Greek Goddess of Beauty, Aphrodite and the Herald of the Olympian Gods, Hermes. When he spurned the advances of the nymph Salmacis (Salmakys), she prayed to the Gods, and earned a boon that she be forever joined with him.

    What is his name ?

    Q3. In the famous book 'Culture of Cities' Lewis Mumford describes the stages in the development and decline of a city - starting off as an eopolis (village) and dying as a necropolis (dead/ghost town).

    When is the name of the stage when the city is at its peak ?

    Q4. The famous 9th Century Persian mathematician, Mukhammad ibn Musa al Khorezmi (Khuarezmi) is immortalized through two commonly used words, one of which comes from his book 'Kitab al Muhtasar fi Hisab al Gabr w'al Muqubalah'.

    What are these words ?

    Q5. He was inspector of gunpowder for the French Government during the Revolution, and was guillotined on charges of adulterating tobacco. A few days later, Lagrange said about him, "It took only an instant to cut off that head, and a hundred years may not produce another like it."

    Whose head ?

    Q6. He signed his letters, 'The Wrath of God'. His name is attached to a fictional effect which causes experiments running in his vicinity to inexplicably fail.

    Who is this madman?

    Q7. From his autobiography : "One day, on tearing off some old bark, I saw two rare beetles and seized one in each hand; then I saw a third and new kind, which I could not bear to lose, so that I popped the one which I held in my right hand into my mouth."

    Who is this weirdo ?

    Q8. Woody Allen once commented that it "immediately doubles your chances for a date on a Saturday night."

    What ?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 10, 2004 #2

    chroot

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    Argh I know number one. I know it! I just have to think about it a bit more. I thought it was something about a physicist though, not a mathematician. Or perhaps a physicist paraphrased it...

    - Warren
     
  4. Aug 10, 2004 #3

    Math Is Hard

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    I'll take the easy one. Q8. Bisexuality.
    Do I also have to take a guess at Q1?
     
  5. Aug 10, 2004 #4

    chroot

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    I'm racking my brain, and I could swear Q1 was applied to Ed Witten. That can't be right, though, because he and Cauchy and Gauss are not contemporaries. :-/ Argh I know some of the other answers outright. Damn this #1 rule!

    - Warren
     
  6. Aug 10, 2004 #5

    Math Is Hard

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    OK, for Q1. I'll take Lenny Euler, but I think that's going to be the wrong time frame also.
     
  7. Aug 10, 2004 #6

    chroot

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    Okay, this is assuredly wrong, but I guess 1) Heaviside and 4) "al gabr," meaning "the bones," the root words of the english word "algebra," referring to the counting apparatus used at the time.

    - Warren
     
  8. Aug 10, 2004 #7

    plover

    User Avatar
    Homework Helper

    #1 Dedekind?

    #3 metropolis?

    hey chroot, what about the other half of #4?
     
  9. Aug 10, 2004 #8

    chroot

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    plover,

    Oooh good guess on Dedekind....

    and I thought "al gabr" were the two words, even though they are merged into one in English.

    - Warren
     
  10. Aug 10, 2004 #9

    plover

    User Avatar
    Homework Helper

    :smile:..........
     
  11. Aug 10, 2004 #10

    chroot

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    Okay plover, you're right... hmmm... algebra and.... geometry? :redface:

    - Warren
     
  12. Aug 10, 2004 #11
    Q7. Charles Darwin
     
  13. Aug 10, 2004 #12

    arildno

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member
    Dearly Missed

    Q1. Niels Henrik Abel
     
  14. Aug 10, 2004 #13

    Galileo

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    Q1. Just guessing... Riemann.
    Q6. This was Wolfgang Pauli. The effect is called "The Pauli Effect".
     
  15. Aug 10, 2004 #14
    Right, this is Abel !

    Q5 : That would be our great Antoine-Laurent de Lavoisier :smile:
     
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2004
  16. Aug 10, 2004 #15

    Gokul43201

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    Okay folks, here u go...

    Q1. No one's got this yet...though there have been a couple good guesses. But no it's not Abel or Heaviside, Riemman, euler or Dedekind.

    Abel died aged 27, and really didn't have the time to build relationships. Moreover, he worked on solving quintic equations and the type. Gauss, a number theorist, had shown disdain for such work and had written in his thesis "that the algebraic solution of an equation was no better than devising a symbol for the root of the equation and then saying that the equation had a root equal to the symbol."

    Heaviside, being English, was isolated from the European mathematicians. Only after Hardy-Littlewood, were Englishmen considered capable of doing math.

    Dedekind and Riemman were a little late on the scene, being in their 20s when Gauss and Cauchy died. By this time, Gauss was something of a recluse, and even though Riemann was his student in Gottingen, there was little interaction.

    Euler was too early. He was dead before Gauss and Cauchy became teenagers.

    Looks like the only guessable person left is the one I'm looking for.

    Q2 is still standing ...as is part of Q4 (Chroot got Algebra but 'geometry' is not right )

    Q4 hint : the other word is derived from his name.

    All other answers are correct ....

    3. Metropolis
    5. Lavoisier
    6. Pauli
    7. Darwin
    8. Bisexuality
     
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2004
  17. Aug 10, 2004 #16

    Gokul43201

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    Perhaps, i'll announce a free for all later...not just yet.

    Questions still standing are 1, 2, 4B - only the new folks are allowed in.

    Okay, if any of these remains uncracked at 5:00pm ET (10:00PM GMT) it's a free for all. Previous guessers may take one shot at each of the remaning questions.
     
  18. Aug 10, 2004 #17

    arildno

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member
    Dearly Missed

    I'll use my last guess on Q1:
    Bolzano??
     
  19. Aug 10, 2004 #18

    Gokul43201

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    arildo, look at the rules - you already took a shot at Q1, so your last guess can only be used for 2 or 4.

    Anyways, it's not Bolzano - is he the philosopher guy ?
     
  20. Aug 10, 2004 #19

    selfAdjoint

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Gold Member
    Dearly Missed

    Hard one. The mathematician obviousy has to be before Jacobi died, and seems to be a contemporary more or less of Gauss and Cauchy too. After considering and rejecting Liouville, I am going to say Dirichlet. He fits the sentiment, even in his early papers, which are in the time frame.


    Q2. Greek Myth : He was the son of the Greek Goddess of Beauty, Aphrodite and the Herald of the Olympian Gods, Hermes. When he spurned the advances of the nymph Salmacis (Salmakys), she prayed to the Gods, and earned a boon that she be forever joined with him.

    What is his name ? {quote]

    Hermaphroditos

    Algebra and algorithm. (the latter from a Latin misspelling of his name).
     
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2004
  21. Aug 10, 2004 #20

    arildno

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member
    Dearly Missed

    Bolzano was a theologian, I believe..
     
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?



Similar Discussions: Math-Sci-Tech Trivia Part III
  1. Sci/Tech Headlines (Replies: 2)

Loading...