Category Archives: Culture

An open letter to Mark Zuckerberg

Dear Mark, Like the Bob Marley song of yore, we continue to wait in vain for Facebook to introduce a “dislike” button. Although it’s your website, it’s very patronizing that you refuse to give us this choice. Nevertheless, instead of endlessly debating … Continue reading

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Who wore it best? (periodic table edition)

   

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Sara Berman’s closet

Among other things, the Metropolitan Museum of Art features 21 period rooms in its American Wing, ranging from a 17th-century colonial interior to an enormous Prairie-style living room by Frank Lloyd Wright, but as Penelope Green reports, “the newest addition … Continue reading

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Ancient probability

Although modern probability theory dates to the 1600s, our ancestors have been playing games of chance for a very long time. Via the amazing Cliff Pickover, for example, check out this ancient die (circa 2500 B.C.) from the Indus Valley Civilization. (Photo Credit: … Continue reading

Posted in Culture, Games, History, Probability | 1 Comment

Close to zero

As we approach the end of the winter season, what are the chances of finding two identical snowflakes? According to physicist Jon Nelson (via Popular Mechanics), the chances are “essentially zero.” Or, to be more mathematically precise, the chances are one … Continue reading

Posted in Culture, Mathematics, Probability, Science | 4 Comments

Social network playlist (part 1)

If you have been following this blog, then you know that we have been using the movie “The Social Network” (and the book “Accidental Billionaires” on which the film is based) to teach our business law course. What you may … Continue reading

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Square-Mile Street Network Visualization Project

As part of his PhD dissertation in urban planning, Geoff Boeing has developed a computer program that visualizes one-square mile of the road network of any major city in the world. (Check out his cool website here.) By way of … Continue reading

Posted in Art, Culture, History, Maps | 2 Comments