That sideways figure eight used as the symbol for infinity (∞) is properly known as a lemniscate. Advertisements

## How Long to Walk the Planck?

One of the smallest units of measurement of time is the Planck time (tP). It is the time required for light to travel, in a vacuum, a distance of one Planck length, […]

## For Those Who Thought Their Math Teachers Were Evil

If math really isn’t your thing, it might not take a lot of convincing for you to believe your math teacher was an agent of evil. If you were forced to identify […]

## Easy as Pi… Well, As Easy as Coffee, Anyway

Want to remember the value of Pi (3.1415926) in easy way? You can do it by counting each word’s letters in “May I have a large container of coffee?”

## Prime Time for Big Prime Number

A prime number is divisible only by one and itself. We learn about them in elementary school and recognize them as 1, 3, 5, 7, 11, etc. As the numbers get larger, […]

## The Size of Smallness

If you have a hard time telling the difference between kilometers, meters, and centimeters, you are really going to struggle with nanometers. At one-billionth of a meter, the nanometer is used to […]

## You Have to Share Your Birthday — But Not Necessarily Your Cake

Put 23 people in a room and there is a statistical probability of 50% that two of them have the same birthday. Increase the number of people to 75, and the […]

## How Are You Going to Go?

When it comes to death, the only real certainty is that we all will face it eventually. As to the manner in which you are likely to leave this world, well, statisticians […]

## Major Metric Malfunction Means Missed Mars Mission and Millions of Moolah

Hopes were high when the Mars Climate Orbiter launched from Cape Canaveral on December 11, 1998. The robotic space probe was designed to study the climate, atmosphere, and surface changes of Mars […]

## Not in the Cards to Repeat a Shuffle

Photo credit: By Alan Cleaver (Flickr: Shuffling the deck) [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons In a deck of 52 cards, there are 80,658,175,170,943,878,571,660,636,856,403,766, 975,289,505,440,883,277,824,000,000,000,000 possible combinations. To give you an idea […]

## Make it Count

A googol is 10100 or 1, followed by 100 zeroes. In contrast, a googolplex is 10googol or 10(10100) or 1, followed by 10100 zeroes. To write out googolplex, be prepared to […]

## Pizza: The Mathematically Perfect Food

## A Dozen Facts about the 20th President

While President James Garfield tends to be little more than a footnote in the history of the US presidency because of the short time that he served, he was a truly remarkable […]

## Euclid’s Geometric Propositions? Child’s Play

When he was a child, Blaise Pascal once locked himself in his room for several days and would not allow anyone to enter. When he emerged, he had figured out all of […]

## Chess: A Game of Limitless Possibilities

In a chess game after three moves by each player, there are over nine million possible configurations for the chess board. Claude Shannon (1916-2001), an American mathematician, calculated the total possible configurations […]