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Trivial Pursuit - Math Edition - November 7, 2010
Rating: 4.6/5 (61 votes cast)
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Spiked Math Comic - Trivial Pursuit - Math Edition

Whoever solves every question correctly first (with proof of correctness) gets a free sticker!!!!

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1. simon newcomb

3. alice & bob

i give up
answer to #2 is 7 [proof: 1/10 chance]
and for the pascal's triangle one... it is 596904 isn't it?
i believe so... since 154!/(3!*(154-3)!) should be equal to that term... due to, you know, binomial theorem or whatever you call that. :P

my bad... the counting on the lower term starts at 0... its actually 154!/(2!*(154-2)! which i 270397512
according to me.


4. either 11781 or 11935 depending if you start counting your rows at 0 or 1.

5. Tralse

ah, yeah it's 7 for #2. #4 seems right. And #5 is True if N=1 :P

what if n=0 but p=0 also? or if p=0? n doesn't have to be 1 always...

anyways, i'm doing my math lab for my exam... its saturday night and i should be out with friends... where did i go wrong?

I can't believe people still puzzle over P = NP. I scribbled the proof for this on a napkin, it's so obvious. I'm gonna proof this for you right here.

So first we hav- Oh wait, someone at the door, be right back.

#5. false (I have discovered a truly marvelous proof that P!=NP, but this comment box is too small to contain it.)

what a shame. did you at least prove it for all non-primes for us?... i wish that made sense>.

#4 is 11781. Xn= n(n+1)/2

Is the green M referring to anything?

M for Math. In the classic version of Trivial Pursuit, green was SN for Science & Nature.

1. Simon Newcomb: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Benford%27s_law
2. 3: http://www.numberworld.org/digits/GoldenRatio/
3. Alice & Bob: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alice_and_Bob
4. 270397512: 154!/(2!(154-2)!)
5. Let's assume by contradiction that P=NP...

XD i like the number of people actually trying to get that sticker.
especially since, due to that last one there, the first one to solve all of these correctly with proof should get US$1,000,000 from the millenium institute


#5 is easy: Yes.

If I were giving out the sticker, I would hand it to you sir.

This answer is undeniably correct.

5. False. Proof: P=NP => P=NP (cancellation) => =N, which is clearly false.

Is the sixth category imaginary?

#4: The webpage only shows up to the 98th row.

I believe #3 is Bob and Alice.

P=NP when P=1. :)

err, when N=1. Man, I need to get my head checked.

or when P is 0

@5: Quite a hard choice, free spikedmath sticker or fields medal. I couldn't decide.

"P" is usually used in logic, so this could be seen as p=~p, although I don't know why he wouldn't have used that in the first place. Anyway I believe it is therefore false.

Let P = 8
Let N = 1
P = 8
NP = 8*1 = 8.
Therefore, P = NP.

5) Ah, but it's also exactly as true as saying P/=NP, and if you're using formal methods in computer science, everything that is unknown is true.

God dammit, that was supposed to be a reply to KK.

"if you're using formal methods in computer science, everything that is unknown is true."

Um, what?

Those of you trying to show P=NP (or not) by substituting values for P or N may have your tongues firmly in your cheeks or may want to look at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/P%3DNP
The P is the class of problems solvable in polynomial time (thus P) and the NP is the class of problems verifiable in polynomial time (it would have been VP but this office is already held by Joe Biden)

5) Not provable with our current set of axioms (i.e. we can append both P=NP and P/=NP to our set of axioms and not force a contradiction)

Can you prove that it's not provable?

5. Yes
(I think you need an XOR in there...)

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