(A Random Post)

Any math majors here? Computer science guys? Engineers? Science majors? OAC math takers? Whatever.

A few months ago (July 24) I posted a page that collected a lot of lines from The Simpsons that involved the use of language, historal timbits of fact, or whatever as some hilarious – yet amazingly subtle – jokes. Well now here’s a page dedicated to identifying the subtle lines in The Simpsons that are based on math. The real shocker is that if you check the page on the writers, it turns out that there’s a whole bunch of them that have PhD’s from Harvard or Berkeley, from Computer Science to Inorganic Chemistry. How one would go from graduate school to writing sitcoms is something I don’t really understand, but dearly wish to know.

It’s all quite interesting, if nerdy, and I’d wager that you’d need at least OAC Calculus to even get some of these. Like when Bart becomes gifted (hyuck!) and the teacher differentiates y = r3/3. I’d be lying if I’d said that being able to understand Simpsons jokes wasn’t the greatest real life application of math that I’ve come across so far.

So I did some sniffing around, and it turns out there’s even nerdier (and thus funnier) lines in Futurama. Here’s the page, but unfortunately it’s in Spanish. One nice one is how Bender’s serial number is 1792 – which is the second Taxicab number. Taxicab numbers are (of course), natural numbers that can be expressed as the sum of two cubes in n ways, where n is the degree of the Taxicab number. Thus…

Taxicab(1) = 2 (13 + 13)

Taxicab(2) = 1729 (13 + 123 = 93 + 103)

Taxicab(3) = 87539319 (1673 + 4363 = 2283 + 4233 = 2553 + 4143)

…and so on. It only goes up to five though, because to this day, the sixth Taxicab number is still unknown. I’d give you the other two numbers, but typing out all those <sup>’s and </sup>’s nearly cost me my life. If you don’t hable español, then you can check the rest via The Great Babel Fish (the one single reason I didn’t fail grade 8 or 9 French).



Destined to fight the world's evil, The WAMBAG endures massive battles involving impossible stunts, races on horse-pulled carriages, and the desecration of enchanting medieval castles (all done with dizzying computer graphics). Not only does the eye candy keep on coming, the tongue-in-cheek writing and deep Transylvanian accents perfect the film with a dose of dark humor.



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