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

This question's going to sound really stupid

  1. Sep 16, 2005 #1
    This question's going to sound really stupid, but here goes: what letter is this supposed to be? I just came across it in a book of mine, but for the life of me, I can't tell whether it's a scripted R, n, or even pi. If I had to guess, I'd say that it's an n, simply because it looks somewhat like a lowercase n. However, if it is a scripted lowercase letter, then why is it the size of the uppercase letters? It's really bothering me, because when I'm reading, I'm not sure what to call it.
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 16, 2005 #2
    I can't tell.
  4. Sep 16, 2005 #3


    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    If you could show it in context we might be able to tell what it is.
  5. Sep 16, 2005 #4

    Ivan Seeking

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    It looks like a script pi to me...
  6. Sep 16, 2005 #5
    Its sum fansy ritin', aint it?
  7. Sep 16, 2005 #6
    I vote pi.
  8. Sep 16, 2005 #7
    Ok, the mystery letter is in Terrell Hill's "An Introduction to Statistical Thermodynamics," and refers to the number of systems in an "ensemble" of systems. (That's another reason why I would lean towards n.)
  9. Sep 16, 2005 #8


    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    Thats the Penguin Constant.

    Since penguins are lazy, it is simply "1", no units.
  10. Sep 16, 2005 #9
    You know, Pengwuino, our user names are very closely related. Look up the word "Manchot" in a French-English dictionary
  11. Sep 16, 2005 #10


    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    haha, the Manchot constant :D

    Damn, google even has a translator... why don't we all just run our lives off google.
  12. Sep 16, 2005 #11
    Definitely an n.
  13. Sep 16, 2005 #12
    It's a hieroglyph from the wreckage at Roswell.
  14. Sep 16, 2005 #13
    Are you basing that on its looks or on the context?
  15. Sep 16, 2005 #14
    No, that's the information that was just beamed into my head from the mothership.
  16. Sep 16, 2005 #15


    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    it's either an n or an r. if it's alphanumeric, of course
  17. Sep 16, 2005 #16
    looks like a pi to me.
  18. Sep 17, 2005 #17


    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    Last edited: Sep 17, 2005
  19. Sep 17, 2005 #18
    I think I saw that symbol chiseled in a piece of granite in the New Hampshire woods by a 10th century group of Irish monks who crossed the Atlantic in a skin boat.
  20. Sep 17, 2005 #19
    Ah.. we've discov... WAIT A MINUTE! There were no monks in new hampshire in the 10th century. You're making this UP!
  21. Sep 17, 2005 #20
    It's somewhat embellished, yes, but it is basically true: there were monks in Ireland at the time, and there was granite in new Hampshire.
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook