# Space-Pi!

Pi is for planets, and spacecraft, for orbital dynamics and craters. It's 3.14, and it's all about circles.

# One easy way to visualize numbers that are very big or very small

When numbers get either very, very large or very, very small, it's hard to conceptualize exactly what they mean. But this vintage video is a simple guide to comprehending numerical extremes.

# How to be a winner by being a nontransitive loser!

There are a set of special dice, called Efron's Dice. Each die will win over the last. And it will keep going until there's an ultimate winner - which will lose to the original loser. There's a lesson, there, that frustrates many sports fans. Here's how to snatch victory from the jaws (or even the stomach) of defeat.

# The Ant on a Rubber Rope Paradox

An ant is inching along a rope at one centimeter per second. The rope is made of rubber, and being stretched at a rate of kilometer per second. Will the ant ever reach the end? Here's a paradox for people working on long, arduous projects.

# The easy way to "prove" that zero is one and -1 is infinity

So you've been set a task: prove something which is clearly not true. That sounds much tougher than it is. All you need is basic math skills, an infinite series of numbers, and a playful spirit. Take a look.

# There are 177,000 ways to tie a tie, mathematicians report

If you're not wearing a tie right now, you might consider slipping one on just for the sake of trying out one or two of these more than 177,000 gorgeously elaborate tie-tying methods, which a mathematician came up with after viewing The Matrix Reloaded.

# Why the Exact Same Lottery Numbers Came Up Twice in One Week

In 2009, the Bulgarian lottery turned the same number sequence twice within five days. Naturally, this made people a tad suspicious. After all, the odds of the same number sequence appearing twice in a row are millions to one against. But actually, it wasn't that suspicious at all.

# The elevator paradox proves your elevator always goes the wrong way

Does it occur to you, when waiting for an elevator, that elevators always seem to be going the wrong way? It occurred to two physicists, too. And, with a little work, they proved that this wasn't just Murphy's Law, it was reality.

# Do boys have more sisters than girls do?

One of the famous intuitive mistakes in probability comes from the simple question, "Do boys have more sisters than girls do?" A quick analysis of the situation may prompt you to say yes. A more in-depth look might change your mind.

# Yes, there is such a thing as a "unit" of death

Back in 1970, when risk assessment became widely-known, people needed to understand risk — but without getting panicked. Assessors wanted to invent a non-scary term to communicate a very small risk of death. And thus the "micromort" was born.

# Penis reattachment, and other winners from the 2013 Ig Nobel Awards

Last night, scientists from around the world traveled (at their own expense!) to Harvard's iconic Sanders Theatre for the "23rd First Annual" Ig Nobel Awards – a ceremony created to recognize those achievements that first make people laugh, and then make them think.

# Why you don't ask five different math experts to split a check

A mathematician, a physicist, an economist, a computer scientist, and an engineer try to split a check. If that sounds like the setup to a joke, that's because it is—a wonderfully nerdy joke from Ben Orlin's Math with Bad Drawings.

# Simpson's Paradox "proves" smoking is good for you

How do you prove that smoking is beneficial to your health? By employing Simpson's Paradox, of course. This paradox shows that a large grouping of data can be worth much less than the sum of its parts.

# James Garfield Was the Only U.S. President to Prove a Math Theorem

The Pythagorean Theorem has been proved many times, and probably will be proven many more times. But only one proof was made by a United States President. Five years before James A Garfield was elected president, he came up with a proof that involves a simple sheet of paper and some scissors.

# Teacher Takes Student's Phone, Sets Passcode as Math Problem Answer

This is what you want from a math teacher. The word problem you see here is what happened after a Redditor's "friend" was caught using his phone during math class. The teacher confiscated the phone, and set the passcode to a certain number, found by answering the problem.

# Women do better on math tests when they fake their names

There's a pernicious myth that says women aren't as good at math as men. And disturbingly, reminding women of this stereotype just before they write a math test will have a detrimental affect on their performance. So what would happen if a woman could pretend to be someone else while writing the test?

# How to Dominate at Monopoly Using Basic Math

Take a very good look at the arrows on this this Monopoly board. It shows all the various ways you can end up in jail. That tidbit alone should fundamentally alter the way you look at this classic game. Here's why — and more.

# Mathematician Makes Astounding Prime Numbers Breakthrough

A partial solution to a centuries-old problem known as the twin prime conjecture now affirms the idea that an infinite number of prime numbers have companions — and that a maximum distance between these pairs does in fact exist.

# Watch baboons show off their human-like math skills

No, we're not quite at the point where baboons can tackle calculus or trigonometry, but they do show an ability to count that's at least as good as that of a human child, as this video from the University of Rochester reveals.