Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Job satisfaction

Every now and then you have one of those moments that makes you realize why it is you do what you do. I've had a couple of them in the past 15 hours or so.

Last night I managed to prove that the path P5 on five vertices is Ramsey unsaturated. (Oddly, there were no ticker-tape parades this morning.) I'm pretty certain this fact has been proven before (I know it's conjectured), but it was satisfying to prove it for myself.

Just now one of the five stalwart students taking both Calc II and MATH 280 with me this term (poor souls) asked a fantastic question based on one of their take-home exam questions. "Is it possible for the center of mass of an object to lie outside the object?" Indeed it is possible, though it turns out not to be the case on the exam problem in question, and this was an astute question to ask!

We then spent about ten minutes generalizing the problem I'd asked on the exam. It turns out that by modifying the endpoints of the interval on which our object is based (and leaving alone the function giving its upper boundary, namely sec(x)), we can in fact obtain an object with center of mass lying outside of the object.

Good times.


Anonymous said...

Totally unrelated to your post, so sorry.. but look what I felt compelled to do!

'contact us' on
Hi. What would the plural of Kleenex be? a friend of mine said kleenexes but I say kleenices...what is the real answer?


DocTurtle said...

Anisa: Awesome! If everyone else hops on and does the same thing, we might get somewhere.

Anonymous said...

Dear Anisa,

Thanks for your e-mail about KLEENEX® facial tissue.

In regards to your inquiry, because KLEENEX is a brand name, it would not be pluralized.

Thanks again for your e-mail.

Anonymous said...