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The Spiked Math IQ Test - March 15, 2012
Rating: 3.8/5 (170 votes cast)
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Spiked Math Comic - The Spiked Math IQ Test


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62 Comments

Furious objections.
The answer for Q1 has to be 10, because that's the 11th root of (whatever you get from applying Lagrange Interpolation to 0, 1, \ldots, 10). Similar arguments applies to Q3.
For Q4, the single letter e, which you apparently interpreted as the Euler's number, was not italicized. Therefore that's just the letter e, not the number.
Looks like Mike knows neither math and how to type math!

In fact, Euler's number e should not be italicized, as it is a name and not a variable. It's the same reason why the digits, 0,1,...,9 are not italicized. And in the differential dx, only the x should be italicized.

Finally! My years of putting

\newcommand{\dx}[1]{\,\mathrm{d} #1 }
in my headers are validated!

i don't know if i can pass "natural" IQ test after this...

btw, i don't get the number 7's answer

For question 1 and 3 I answered "E) All of the above". How many points do I get?
Also on question 6 the answer "21" should give more points than "101" because 21 works for all bases greater than 2 while 101 only works for base 2. :)

There's a spelling mistake near the end. It should read "0 points: Congratulations! You possess common sense and are not too much of a geek to function in the real world. You should stop wasting your time reading webcomics, though." Just kidding. I got three points anyway.

failed all. also panicked when I read "you have 30 seconds" and didn't hava a clock.

How the heck is number 7 supposed to work?

Trying to be a good sport but all I can think of is this... http://xkcd.com/169/

My sentiments exactly!

Didn't get the last one...

re: 7, he's lazy. His work week is really only ~2 days

Question 3 should be 0,1,1,2,3,5,8,31, then 93.
I even so, I would have still got a zero..

Haha, yesterday, I read a rant about IQ tests not measuring your real intelligence, but how fast you can see the obvious, straight-forward, best answer. It was about "which picture comes next" or "which is the odd one out" ^^

I managed to get 4 points. I could probably have gotten 7 if I didn't rush through the end and actually thought about the last few, but 30 seconds is not enough for that. (I expect I could have gotten the binary question right).

As a mathematician, You should probably know what does "Well defined task" mean and what does "Right answer" mean. But in Your defense, I would say that Your test is equally under-defined like the official ones :)

What's special about the (A) diagram in question 5 having to be the start of the sequence? There's rotational symmetry making it isomorphic to any other element and so your answer does not make sense.

Q6) is wrong, 101 is not a valid binary number since it's impossible to have odd numbers (expect 1). Each step is double the numbers of the previous you start with one digit then go to 2 digits then 4 digits. For a binary arithmetic it would be 0101.
7 ) A working week has been clearly define by society as 5 days. Also if he is selling 7 per day he would either end up with 14 or 21. If he is just working the weekend then it would 7.5.
Q2 is just wrong on so many levels.

101 is not a valid binary number since it's impossible to have odd numbers (expect 1)

Oh come on. I don't even know where to begin...

By odd numbers I mean odd numbers of numbers not that they appear to be an odd number. Also taking a statement out of context is as smart and clever as the quiz

You must be a computer engineer or perhaps a computer scientist because mathematically, binary just refers a base-2 system. In which case 101 is completely valid. 0101 is also valid but the 0 in front is just a place holder as it is in base 10.

Indeed I am a computer engineer. The solution said it used binary arithmetic and not mathematics arithmetic. Hence it being wrong you can apply one subset of a rule then apply another subset of another rule, it's illogical.

I'm afraid you misunderstood me. It still uses binary arithmetic. It just does it in the mathematical setting. (this is a math comic afterall) Whereas you're thinking of it from a computer engineering setting.

In what way is binary arithmetic not mathematical arithmetic? It's just ordinary arithmetic expressed in a different base from what we normally use. Leading zeros are optional and do not change the value. On computers you usually have a fixed number of bits to work with, so a certain number of leading zeros will be there, but that doesn't mean you must write them when you're writing a binary number in text. Try changing the all the numbers in the wikipedia article for the binary numeral system to have an even number of bits, and see how long it is before the edits are reverted.

Wait, did I just feed a troll? If I count to four in binary on a single, five-digit hand, is it still binary? Try it and see! :p

that's like saying 142 isn't valid, but 0142 is in decimal. Of course they are both valid. You don't have to write insignificant digits, because there's an infinite number of them.

There's 10 kinds of people in this world those who understand binary and those who don't. We know which kind you are. (Someone had to say it)

In defense of computer engineers everywhere I must say that I am a computer engineer and 101 is a perfectly valid binary number. Leading zeros in the integer part of a number do not matter. Not in base 2 or in any other base. The following are all perfectly valid ways of expressing 5 in binary: 101, 0101, 00101, etc... I hope this makes sense to you now.

You're applying the rules of an integer to the rules of binary? Two different data types.

Ok, I'll try this one more time. Binary addition has various meanings depending on its context. You are fixated on one particular context.

A working week is five days. Sell 7 oranges on two days, 1 orange on 1 day, 0 oranges on two days. Using mode for the average, then on average he sells 7 or 0 oranges.

One way to get a mode of just 7 is to sell 7 on two days, 2 on one day, 0 on one day and -1 on the other.

But how long is a mathematician's/grad student's working week???

Yay! I have some creativity and a lot of potential! =))

Q7 is in base 30?

that's pretty much what I never liked about these tests. you had to make your own rules and those have to be the same as the author's rules. is it really intelligence if you come up with the solution most people understand?

All these people sincerely complaining about the rules not making sense... do you not GET Mike? Like, at all?
Awesome as usual ;) I managed to get some points (though I assumed 30 seconds was a hexadecimal number...)

Q7 reminded me of this old school math tutorial: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N67bzQwsTIc

It certainly is possible to get a point sum of 1, if you only answered Q7 and did so correctly.

...I hate you a little right now.

Q3 is a Fibonacci series as well (as it appears to me). Therefore, 21 is the next number.

Fibonacci is the alter-ego of Iccanobif.

Fo Q7), I got 0 as most likely (using geometric mean for "average").

I got 0, but counting modulo 11, that = 11, so I'm thinking like a true genius! At least, to modulos 2 to 14.

So, for number 2, I realize the idea behind the solution is that the problem gives a mapping from a set of animals to a set of animal meats. And since every element isn't being mapped to the identity element, the next most logical mapping is to send it to the same element. Since we sent "pig" to "pork" then every element in te domain must be mapped to "pork". So, my question is, what exactly would be the identity element in the codomain?

I still don't get Q7.

The use-mention distinction shows that the answer to question 4 is in fact 0.

Extra credit for you, methinks.

omg- toooo funny! espec the comment about getting 19 pts! thanks!

The Fibonacci series solution was the obvious answer here. That's why it got 0 points.

For Q7, I get an answer of 9. (Assuming a working week has 40 hours and a day has 24 hours.)

Q4 as a question makes no sense; it asks how many times e occurs in the sentence, but there is no sentence to be found.

Q7, obviously, if he sells 7 oranges a day during 5 day, he solds 35 oranges... as the question says he sold 15 oranges, i suggest Mike uses base 30 for this question.

I would be disappointed if Q7 involves some base other than ten, since Q6 already uses a non-decimal base. Repetition is boring.

I scored log(e^itau)

7 points.

Hm, in question 6 I didn't even consider nonbinary addition XD
I do like the PORK function. I'll try mapping everything to PORK today.

Objection to Q1. Since we're obviously looking at the series of non-negative integers modulo ten, the next element in the sequence should be 0.

Question 4 is not a sentence - its a question so the answer is 0.

I actually got q6 right.

I get a "0". I am really happy with that.

How foolish.

I got 4 of the questions correct, woot! But Q7 is wrong. If Desmond has a finite lifespan (and thus finite oranges sold) then the average number of oranges he sells each day is clearly zero, or something very near zero if time is not infinite.

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