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More proof that math trickery can be used for good or evil.
October 4, 2013 7:58 AM   Subscribe

Amaze Your Friends, Solve World Hunger; How to Create Chocolate out of Nothing! [slyt]
posted by quin (22 comments total) 7 users marked this as a favorite

 
Is this a metaphor for how the US economy works these days?
posted by Foci for Analysis at 8:02 AM on October 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


White chocolate? You're creating nothing out of nothing, actually.
posted by Thorzdad at 8:05 AM on October 4, 2013 [18 favorites]


Ooh, ooh, I finally know the punchline to this one: The Aristocrats! No, wait, Private Equity!
posted by MuffinMan at 8:25 AM on October 4, 2013


Okay, I'll be the guy who doesn't understand how he started and ended with 6x4 there.
posted by Navelgazer at 8:28 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


POSSIBLE SPOILER:













I thiiiiink the two middle rows in the original are slightly longer than the end rows, and that's where the trick lies. That's all my pre-coffee brain can come up with.
posted by not_on_display at 8:30 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


Yup, you're just trading slivers of longer blocks for one shorter block.
posted by jimmythefish at 8:32 AM on October 4, 2013


not_on_display - that's exactly it. If you look closely at the row being sliced, it is definitely shorter after the trick is over.
posted by vernondalhart at 8:35 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


From the video poster:

Mariano Tomatis 1 day ago
Yes, top parts from another chocolate block but no switch - just a CGI stretch before the graphic overlayer :)

posted by Think_Long at 8:35 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


Spolier alert:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Missing_square_puzzle
posted by mosk at 8:42 AM on October 4, 2013 [6 favorites]


White chocolate? You're creating nothing out of nothing, actually.

Seriously, white chocolate is the repackaged subprime mortgage derivative of the confection world. This is essentially a proxy editorial about hedge funds.
posted by cortex at 8:50 AM on October 4, 2013 [13 favorites]


I'm sitting here with a major chocolate craving but no chocolate in the house.
I see this post and think "It's my lucky day! I can just make a piece of chocolate out of nothing!"
I watch the video.
I realize that I am no closer to chocolate than I was a minute ago. Plus now I'm confused.
posted by Slack-a-gogo at 9:03 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


Okay, I'll be the guy who doesn't understand how he started and ended with 6x4 there.
Spoilers:








He doesn't. The block actually ends up being 5-3/4 x 4. It's just that that's not a very noticeable difference. Somewhere on the web is an animated gif version of this which is very convincing, until the end where the animation loops and you see the block suddenly grow taller.
posted by CHoldredge at 9:27 AM on October 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


I was convinced this film was going to begin with somebody reciting 'Milk, milk, lemonade...'
posted by PeterMcDermott at 9:29 AM on October 4, 2013


He doesn't. The block actually ends up being 5-3/4 x 4.

And part of the trick to the classic formulation is that the part removed is a very thing, elongated triangle, so that the missing bits constitute hard-to-see thin chunks in the margins. So you don't even get an apparently significantly shorter block; you lose a wee bit, but the imperfect edges of the rearranged blocks keep the perimeter of the thing closer to the original than just squashing everything perfectly efficiently into a new rectangle would yield.

Of course, with the chocolate here you trade that surgical precision of that geometric alteration for some slightly rough edges around the cut, which muddies the whole thing visually in a slightly different way. Either way, it's a good little dose of stage magic.
posted by cortex at 9:40 AM on October 4, 2013


Hershey's hates him!
posted by orme at 10:12 AM on October 4, 2013 [4 favorites]


I feel like I more or less get this, but then I'm confused when he says that he uses a piece from another bar of chocolate, and that there was CGI involved. Neither should be necessary.
posted by naju at 10:13 AM on October 4, 2013


A real mathematician wouldn't use cheap tricks to make free chocolate. They'd use a Banach-Tarski decomposition.
posted by edd at 10:43 AM on October 4, 2013 [7 favorites]


I think this just goes to show, you need chocolate to get chocolate. No magical chocolate out of nothing. Those people with no chocolate in the world will not be able to create a free piece. Also the more chocolate you have, then the more extra pieces you can get. it must be good to be chocolate rich.
posted by Jaelma24 at 10:48 AM on October 4, 2013


Reminds me of this, which I always loved.

Missing Square Puzzle
posted by gummo at 10:53 AM on October 4, 2013


The block actually ends up being 5-3/4 x 4. It's just that that's not a very noticeable difference.

This. If you look at the larger triangle in the wiki spoiler linked above you'll notice that the larger triangle has dimensions of 8x3x8.5ish, whereas the smaller triangle has dimensions of 5x2x5.3ish. They're not to scale with each other.

There was another version of this same "trick" on imgur/reddit a while back. They took a pixelated square that had sides with a length of 1, so the square would have a volume of 4. Then they proceeded to use infinitely smaller grids to remove more and more pixels from the corners of the square, where the "length" of each side still remained as 1, but it essentially was a circle. Somehow the volume changed to 3.14 due to the nature of it being a circle.
posted by Blue_Villain at 11:18 AM on October 4, 2013


White chocolate issues aside, this is more a case of making more chocolate out of some chocolate, as opposed to chocolate out of nothing, helping only those who already have chocolate to begin with. This is yet another way for the chocolate-rich to get chocolate-richer while the chocolate-poor see no benefit. The chocolate-starved masses such as Slack-a-gogo up there are given only false hope and empty promises.
posted by eykal at 2:53 PM on October 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


(Or, what Jaelma24 said. This is why you shouldn't keep your tabs open in the background for four hours at a time.)
posted by eykal at 2:58 PM on October 4, 2013


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