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  Music of Tom Lehrer

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Tom Lehrer was (is) a former professor of mathematics, who had obtained a master's in the subject, and later went on to compose a multitude of songs for the British television show "That Was The Week That Was."

Share your favourite verse of Lehrer's music, and if not familiar with him already, become so by looking him up.

"I love my friends – and they love me – we're just as close, as we can be – and just because, we really care…

…whatever we get, we share…

I got it from Agnes, she got it from Jim; we all agree it must have been Louise who gave it to him,

now she got it from Harry, who got it from Marie, and everybody knows that Marie…

…got it from me."


admin

2 months ago Administrator

Surprised Tom Lehrer hasn't gotten a mention on esoForum yet. Nevertheless: here is New Math, a song about 'the new math' (also known as 'common core,' denoting a period in the fifties and sixties where mathematics teaching took a turn to the principle of, quote: "knowing what you're doing, rather than getting the right answer").

"You can't take three from two, two is less than three, so you look at the four in the tens place. Now that's really four tens, so you make it three tens, regroup, and you change a ten to ten ones, and you add [them] to the two and you get twelve, and you take away three – that's nine – is that clear?

Now instead of four in the tens place, you've got three 'cause you added one: that is to say, ten, to the two, but you can't take seven from three, so you look in the hundreds place / from the three you then use one to make ten ones (and you know why four plus minus one plus ten is fourteen minus one, 'cause addition is commutative, right) and so you've got thirteen tens, and you take away seven, and that leaves five.

[…]

Now, that actually is not the answer I had in mind, because the book that I got this problem out of wants you to do it in base eight, but don't panic! Base eight is just like base ten, really, if you're missing two fingers. (haha)

You can't take three from two, two is less than three, so you look at the four in the eights place. Now that's really four eights, so you make it three eights, regroup, and you change an eight to eight ones, and you add 'em to the two, and you get one-two base eight, which is ten base ten, and you take away three, that's seven."


Latemarx

2 months ago Administrator

Tom Lehrer

Now, that actually is not the answer I had in mind, because the book that I got this problem out of wants you to do it in base eight, but don't panic! Base eight is just like base ten, really, if you're missing two fingers.

Missing one finger on both hands or two fingers on one hand?


admin

2 months ago Administrator

Latemarx - go to this post

Missing one finger on both hands or two fingers on one hand?

I always interpreted it as 'one finger on both hands,' although both are plausible. Maybe a tragic accident? How were the fingers lost?


Latemarx

2 months ago Administrator

admin - go to this post

I always interpreted it as 'one finger on both hands,' although both are plausible. Maybe a tragic accident? How were the fingers lost?

While doing new math the person decided to do it in base eight and decided that their fingers were no longer needed.


admin

1 month ago Administrator

Latemarx - go to this post

While doing new math the person decided to do it in base eight and decided that their fingers were no longer needed.

Fingers are a myth and are thus fake news.


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