Tuesday, April 6, 2010
Mathematics, statistics, graphing, these are tools to help give us a better understanding of the natural, physical world. They help us use what we do know to extrapolate what we don’t.
For example, if we take this graph, plotting known animal species by weirdness, you’ll see the majority of animals falling within a predictable range of mean weirdness. Mean weirdness is represented on our graph by the muskox.
Of course, the interesting stuff happens a few standard deviations out. Down here at this end we’ve got the least weird animals, your golden retrievers and House Wrens. At the other end, we’ve got the weirdest creatures—pangolins, jellyfishes, platypuses, humans, like that.
Now, if you’ll notice… wait a minute. I’m seeing some anomalies in the data down here at the maximally weird end of the spectrum. Let me just see what happens if we continue these calcula—
Posted by Palmoni at 6:56 AM