Most colleges here in the Philippines use the 1-5 grading system, 1.0  being the highest and 5.0 being the lowest. The passing mark is 3.0. Because it is relatively difficult to pass most courses (and exams) in our university compared to other other universities in our country, some students are quite  happy to get 3.0, especially in  difficult courses.

That probably inspired the writer of the poem below. That poem is printed at the back of t-shirts sold at the university.  One day, I heard three freshmen talking and laughing about wearing the shirt. One said, ‘I won’t wear that shirt ’til I graduate. My classmate wore it and he got a 3.0 in Math 17 (Algebra and Trigonometry). Believe me, those shirts are cursed,’ and they all laughed.

The poem is  a derivative the poem “Tree” by Joyce Kilmer. Honestly,  I do not know who is the author of the poem. Kindly tell me if you know.

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Would you have made it into Harvard in 1869?

If you think your tough in math and can pass the 1869 Harvard math exam, don’t rejoice so much because there are other subjects as well.

Click the picture to view full exam

Other subjects included are History and Geography, Latin Grammar, English to Latin Translation, Greek Grammar with accents, and Greek Composition :-D.

Surprisingly, according to the original article, 185 out of 210 examinees passed the exam.

Potato chips and mathematics

If your math teacher told you that mathematics is everywhere, believe him.   Almost all the things that we see around (even things that we do not see)  are  related to mathematics  — even potato chips. Yes, even potato chips.

Some potato chips, particularly Pringles (I hope they give me 500 bucks for this), are in a shape of a saddle.  In mathematics a saddle-shaped graph is called a hyperbolic paraboloid (see left figure).

A hyperbolic paraboloid quadratic and doubly ruled surface given by the Cartesian equation z = \displaystyle\frac{y^2}{b^2} - \frac{x^2}{a^2}.  Now, whatever that means will be discussed when you take your analytic geometry course.

For now, let’s be happy that we  know that even potato chips can be modeled by graphs. 🙂


Sources: Omg Facts, Pringle’s Site, Wolfram Math World

Photo Credit: Hyperbolic Paraboloid (Wikimedia), Pringles chips (Wikimedia)

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