"He calls this the Tao of Hawkeye. You can’t just have a database around Hawkeye, right? Not if you really want to understand Hawkeye over time. Because Hawkeye isn’t just Hawkeye. He’s also Ronin and Goliath and Clint Barton. Sometimes he’s dead. Oh, and by the way: he started as a villain. Who remembers that?
-- Back in the eighties people like Mark Gruenwald and Peter Sanderson guarded Marvel Comics' continuity. These days Peter Olson tries to do the same for a much bigger Marvel using science and math
posted by MartinWisse
on Nov 4, 2013 -
This is one example of a phenomenon I noticed throughout this chart: natural rival franchises tend to have similar numbers of goon seasons. This would suggest that goon employment may be (in some instances) localized arms races between rivals, whose cyclical number of goons tends to reflect the other’s in some perverted game of Mutually Assured Terrible Hockey (MATH)... We also have a team like Detroit near the bottom of the list, with only 8.5 goon seasons in their history. Since 1985-86, the Wings have only had 4.5 goon seasons. They’ve only had 2 goon seasons since 1988-89. Coincidentally, they’ve been pretty damned swell at winning hockey games since that time. The Evolution of Goon Culture in the NHL
posted by mannequito
on Sep 28, 2013 -
If the NSA is able to break through banks' computer security, does that mean it solved the prime factorization problem?
The New York Times reported
recently that “the agency has circumvented or cracked much of the encryption, or digital scrambling, that guards global commerce and banking systems.” Since banks' encryption codes rely on the fact that nobody knows how to find the prime factors of really large numbers, it could mean that the NSA has found a way to do that. Or it could mean that the NSA has simply gotten lots of banks to give up their information, or found other ways around their encryption. But if they've cracked this long-standing math problem, might the secret leak? What would be the effects?
posted by Sleeper
on Sep 12, 2013 -
is a searchable 2-dimensional visualization of the 800,000+ scientific papers (mostly in physics and math) on the arXiv preprint server.
posted by escabeche
on Aug 18, 2013 -
This is a visualization of Beach Boys vocals inspired by the physics of church bells. Using a mathematical relationship between a the circumference of a circular surface and pitch, I wrote code that draws a circle for each note of the song.
(Single Link Vimeo)
posted by Navelgazer
on Aug 14, 2013 -
"It's just one of those days where you wake up thinking that if you jazzed up Stravinsky's Owl And The Pussycat it'd be awesome..."
[SLYT] [more inside]
posted by motty
on Jun 27, 2013 -
The series of Project Mathematics tapes regularly brought the
house down at the annual SIGGRAPH video show; these mathematical animations were glowing jewels among the over-produced, techy-commercial animations usually shown at SIGGRAPH. -- Edward Tufte via edwardtufte.com
I wonder where these jewels might be found ... [more inside]
posted by tarpin
on May 23, 2013 -
Division of labor in child care: A game-theoretic approach
The analysis shows that it is difficult to achieve the equilibrium of equal sharing of child care, even when this is the preference of the parents. This leads to a discussion of alterations and meta-strategies for couples who want to share care equally. Gender differences between parents are also modeled, including the impact these have on outcomes and equilibria.Full text PDF
posted by bq
on May 6, 2013 -
"One might think that, once we know something is computable, how efficiently it can be computed is a practical question with little further philosophical importance. In this essay, I offer a detailed case that one would be wrong. In particular, I argue that computational complexity theory---the field that studies the resources (such as time, space, and randomness) needed to solve computational problems---leads to new perspectives on the nature of mathematical knowledge, the strong AI debate, computationalism, the problem of logical omniscience, Hume's problem of induction, Goodman's grue riddle, the foundations of quantum mechanics, economic rationality, closed timelike curves, and several other topics of philosophical interest. I end by discussing aspects of complexity theory itself that could benefit from philosophical analysis."
posted by cthuljew
on May 5, 2013 -
Every Noise At Once.
A map of musical genres, built by Glenn McDonald of The War Against Silence and the Echo Nest. Click on a genre name to hear a sound sample, or pop it open to see a map of bands within that genre.
posted by escabeche
on Apr 30, 2013 -
Three professors at Harvey Mudd College wanted to do something special to mark the final lecture of Math 40: Linear Algebra that their students could relate to. The result: they transformed themselves into The Three Directions and performed "That Makes It Invertible!"
for their class, complete with choreography and bad math puns. (SLYT)
posted by zachlipton
on Mar 14, 2013 -