• Review of a movie about Godel, Cantor, Turing and Boltzmann, at Reasonable Deviations.
• Diandra, at Cocktail Party Physics, asks: "Which is better: going from a car that gets 34 miles per gallon (mpg) to one that gets 50 mpg, or changing from a car that gets 18 mpg to one that gets 28 mpg?" It's not as straightforward as you'd first think.
• What if you have a coin that lands heads more often than tails? Can you devise a way to use it for a fair toss? Yep. Bill the Lizard explains how.
• Gwen Dewar blogs at Parenting Science, where she passes along research of interest to parents. From an article on helping young children develop their math skills, here's a fascinating bit on the connection between math, language, and an innate counting ability:
Recent research [was] conducted by cognitive neuroscientists on kids who speak only Walpiri or Anindilyakwa, two native Australian languages (Butterworth et al 2008). These languages include number words for only three numerosities--“one,” “two,” and any imprecise quantity that is "more than two." Yet 4- to 7-year old speakers of these languages performed as well or better than English speakers when they were asked to
• briefly examine a small set of tokens and then assemble an identical set of tokens from memory
• listen to a series of up to 7 taps and then place the corresponding number of tokens on a mat
• spontaneously subdivide a set of 6 or 9 items into three equal sets when they were told to “share” these items among three toy bears