Skip

Möbius strip unravelled
July 17, 2007 6:26 PM   Subscribe


 
See also.
posted by Blingo at 6:37 PM on July 17, 2007


WHEW!!!!!!
posted by ORthey at 6:39 PM on July 17, 2007 [3 favorites]


Next up: the chicken or the egg?
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 6:55 PM on July 17, 2007


You can’t smoke in here, Katie.
I’m not smoking. I’m just getting my phone.
Give me those.
Stop!
You promised you would never smoke around me.
I’m not!
You promised you wouldn’t let me see these.
I can’t believe you’re doing this!
Come back!… Come back here!… Katie!

"There is the theory of the moebius. A twist in the fabric of space where time becomes a loop, from which there is no escape. When we reach that point, whatever happened will happen again.” -Worf, STNG, “Time Squared”

You can’t smoke in here, Katie.
I’m not...
posted by ZachsMind at 7:05 PM on July 17, 2007 [1 favorite]


Next up: the chicken or the egg?

The egg appeared first. It predates the chicken (and feathered birds in general) by millions of years. From dinosaurs. And earlier, even.

Next?
posted by loquacious at 7:30 PM on July 17, 2007 [1 favorite]


I went to college with Maggie Möbius, the granddaughter of August Möbius. She was so haaawwwwt back in the day. Let's just say that "Möbius strip" had very positive mental connotations for me during my college years.
posted by jonp72 at 7:31 PM on July 17, 2007 [8 favorites]


With the equations, the two researchers showed that the strip's shape depends on the length and width of the rectangle it is made from.

Mm-mm, you don't say. I love me some baffling math reporting. Next up on Nightline: Mathematicians, using equations, increase amount of math.

I hate math reporting because it always boils down to "we've figured out something extremely interesting, which is unfortunately too involved to fit in the margins of this article. But trust us-- completely fascinating!" I understand that it's always going to be like this, and that any useful explanation of a problem is going to be far too involved shoehorn into a short news article, but it's just. so. frustrating.
posted by phooky at 7:53 PM on July 17, 2007 [10 favorites]


Loquacious, you are well aware that the egg in the question is specifically a chicken egg.

Still, you're right: between the chicken egg and the chicken, egg is first. It would have to be a chicken egg for a chicken to come out of it. Whatever laid the very first chicken egg was not technically a chicken. You can figure out how to delineate chickenality any which way, but the answer won't change.
posted by damehex at 7:53 PM on July 17, 2007 [2 favorites]


You can figure out how to delineate chickenality any which way

Oh how I miss the image tag. Paging Jessamyn!
posted by loquacious at 7:57 PM on July 17, 2007 [3 favorites]


The duo solved the problem using a set of unpublished 20-year-old equations. "If you try to write out equations for the shape of the strip without these tools it's a formidable task," says Starostin. "I tried it and it didn't work."

With the equations, the two researchers showed that the strip's shape depends on the length and width of the rectangle it is made from.

Starostin wants to alert other scientists to the existence of these forgotten mathematical tools. "This is the first application of this mathematical theory. Other communities, such as experts in mechanics, don't know of its existence."


if they were so hep to alerting everyone about these magic lost equations, you'd think they would fucking tell me in the article, at least give a clue.

fuck you Nature(tm).
posted by geos at 8:16 PM on July 17, 2007


Give me those.
Stop!
posted by ZachsMind at 8:19 PM on July 17, 2007 [1 favorite]


See also.
posted by Blingo at 6:37 PM on July 17


same dude, different idea.

the boundary of a disk is a circle. if you take a disk and attach it to another disk along the boundary so that each boundary follows a mobius strip, you get real two dimensional projective space.

fuck yeah!

real two dimensional projective space is double covered by one dimensional complex projective space which is itself just a 2 dimensional sphere (the boundary of a ball).

fuck yeah!!

the Moebius transformations are the projective transformations of one dimensional complex projective space: think projections!

fuck yeah!!!

that's the closest connection between the moebius strip and moebius transformations!
posted by geos at 8:22 PM on July 17, 2007 [1 favorite]


I had a Transformer that turned into a Meobius strip, but I could never figure out how to get a robot out of it.
posted by Kickstart70 at 8:43 PM on July 17, 2007


loquacious : The egg appeared first. It predates the chicken (and feathered birds in general) by millions of years. From dinosaurs. And earlier, even.

*snorts contemptuously*

Sure, if you want to completely ignore the preponderance of evidence which points to the space chicken, that's your prerogative. But I for one will hear no more of this eggist rhetoric.
posted by quin at 10:10 PM on July 17, 2007 [2 favorites]




I like how the author states that the Möbius strip was "[d]iscovered independently by two German mathematicians in 1858" as if he was actually denouncing this negligence, and then goes without once mentioning the name of other one!
posted by Glow Bucket at 11:35 PM on July 17, 2007


Oh, and I forgot to mention him too: His name is Johann Benedikt Listing.
posted by Glow Bucket at 12:04 AM on July 18, 2007


Here's the abstract of the actual article (and a link to the article, if you're a "Nature" subscriber), in case anyone is curious about what they've actually proved... not that the abstract by itself is terribly informative to a non-specialist.
posted by epimorph at 1:08 AM on July 18, 2007


Still, you're right: between the chicken egg and the chicken, egg is first. It would have to be a chicken egg for a chicken to come out of it. Whatever laid the very first chicken egg was not technically a chicken. You can figure out how to delineate chickenality any which way, but the answer won't change.

You are aware that the question "which came first?" is in fact unsolvable by the very fact that its actually a question of Evolution vs. Creationism?

(waits for mefites to throw things)

If you look at the question with an evolutionary view, you come up with the egg first. if you look at it as a creationist, its the chicken first.

But none of this has to do with a moebius strip, except perhaps, ironically, the way that metafilter's atheism keeps running over itself?
posted by mr_book at 5:41 AM on July 18, 2007


And I would have gotten away with it, if it wasn't for you meddling kids!
posted by phirleh at 5:41 AM on July 18, 2007


Conveyor belts are manufactured as Möbius strips, because the entire area of the belt receives the same amount of wear, so it lasts longer. The same goes for recording tapes, as it doubles the playing time.

What? Which recording tapes do this?
posted by rolypolyman at 6:41 AM on July 18, 2007


I'm still waiting for mathematicians to solve the Moby mystery.
posted by rocket88 at 6:47 AM on July 18, 2007


But what does Harry Keogh think of all this?
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 7:36 AM on July 18, 2007


What? Which recording tapes do this?

"High activity" tapes like the endless-looping outgoing message tapes for answering machines or tele-information services. Services like, oh, phone sex. 1-900 number stuff. It was used in 8-tracks, also, and their industrial brethren - the "audio cart", which was used in radio stations across the world for commercials, bumps, promos, PSAs and station IDs.

No, they aren't used much these days, what with the massive world-wide embiggulation of the tubulatrons and the bits and bytes whizzing hither and tither and the wrapping of codecs verily upon the rapid angular gyrations of the platters of the massively integrated magnetic-oxide mass storage devices and the flash PROMs and PRAMs and so on and so forth and the glitching in the algoyrithms and the artifacting of the missing codec pin registers...
posted by loquacious at 8:09 AM on July 18, 2007


"Yo mamma so fat, that her tape worm is a mobius strip!"
posted by blue_beetle at 8:37 AM on July 18, 2007


I'm still waiting for mathematicians to solve the Moby mystery.

[((Aphex Twin - talent) + disco beats)/(veganism x meekness)] + folk music samples = Moby

...near as I can figure without my slide rule....
posted by BitterOldPunk at 8:56 AM on July 18, 2007




I've not seen any conveyor belts do this, and I work around something like 50 miles of them. hm
posted by Phantomx at 11:46 AM on July 18, 2007


M. C. Escher: It's "Maurits Cornelis" not "Max."
posted by alamo1234 at 7:16 PM on July 18, 2007


« Older Harry Potter and the Red Herring   |   I'm Bill James, bitch! Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments



Post