DailyDirt: Math Is Hard

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

Several years ago, a president of Harvard resigned — due, in part, to expressing his opinion that there are innate differences between men and women that contribute to fewer women in math/science professions. Since then, there have been a few studies on how people deal with math. Here are just a few quick links.

By the way, StumbleUpon can recommend some good Techdirt articles, too.

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Comments on “DailyDirt: Math Is Hard”

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trish says:

i’m a native french speaker as well as english, and i always thought it was funny that french doesn’t have words for 80 and 90, ‘quatre-vingt’ and ‘quatre-vingt-dix’ (four twenty/ four-twenty-ten). I read somewhere that it’s because some ancient people counted by twenties instead of by tens like we do today, so forty would be ‘2 times 20’ and so on. The article says it’s about the length of the words that represent the numbers are shorter, which makes sense.
Never mind french, check out the Arara peple mentioned in the article who count only by twos! imagine: 8 is ‘two-two-two-two’ in their language lol…

chris says:

“his opinion that there are innate differences between men and women that contribute to fewer women in math/science”

Mike, that is not accurate. He suggested that innate differences may be a factor. He did not say that he thought that they were. I minor difference, but I think what happened to him in the aftermath was unjust so I think it’s important to set the record straight.

NullOp says:


In 2012 almost anyone will look good against Obama! It’s hard to believe this country elected a socialist.

Also this might be a very good time for a REAL third party to spring up. There are a lot of candidates for every presidential election but a really serious third party candidate that is actually electable would be something to consider.

In any case, Obama = NO in 2012!

Richard (profile) says:

Re: Obama

In 2012 almost anyone will look good against Obama! It’s hard to believe this country elected a socialist.

Obama? A socialist? Really?

Exactly what has he done that even vaguely counts as socialism?

Actually what your country could do with is a real socialist. I think the last one you had was a guy called Roosevelt and you got a legacy of 25 years of unheard of prosperity after him.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Obama

Who gives a fuck if the guy is socialist, capitalist, jew, christian, muslim, gay, green or whatever.

None of that matters what would matter is if he was capable of doing something which he is obviously not, he is weaker than Bush even though he is more articulate than Bush will ever be and still he can’t lead he has no leadership in him and can’t build consensus on anything and can’t find his way out of the problems America face.

Anonymous Coward says:

The Romans had a strange subtractive way of reckoning some of the numbers less than 100. So, for example, instead of 38 being “triginta octo” (“thirty-eight”), it was “duodequadraginta” (“two down from forty”); similarly, 39 was “undequadraginta”, not “triginta novem”. This was true for all such 8 and 9 (mod 10) numbers, except for 8 and 9 themselves, and (for whatever reason) 98. The normal ways were valid but rare.

Owen Lock (profile) says:

Larry Summers


Wasn’t the president of Harvard Larry Summers?

If so, he never even implied that women have less talent in the hard sciences; what he did say was that in an investigation as to why women weren’t proportionately represented in the sciences and math, that the investigation also look into innate ability.

Having worked for an eccentric economist for many years, I recognized Summers’s comment as merely insuring that all possible causes be investigated.

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