What is a person, and how do you know if we are one? People have been worrying about this for many centuries, which we smug moderns might think makes them look foolish. This is a trick of perspective: they had no way to know that we'd look back and see people worrying about whether they were people, which would have given an answer if they'd known it. People of past ages were foolish in many ways but they wouldn't go begging the question like that when they could be instead riling up people who misuse phrases like ``begging the question''.
The remainder of this installment is over at my humor blog, where I've also had stuff since last week and the Report on the Failure of the Turpid Moraine Moraine Project. Those featured articles have been:
- The Numbers And What They Were For April 2014, tracking how well-received my humor blog was last month.
- Finley Peter Dunne: The Names Of A Week, a slice of July 1902 presented to the newspaper readers of the time.
- Bunny Snacking, which is not about eating our pet rabbit.
- Comic Strips You Might Read, some of which are mathematics, some of which are Popeye, which has been dancing around the question of what Popeye's last name is in a way that I know will be disappointing even though I know already that it's going to be disappointing.
- Statistics Saturday: The Forgotten Days, explaining the days of the week you forgot we had.
- Koko The Clown: Koko's Earth Control, or, why you shouldn't let your reckless dog pull the lever to destroy the world.
Trivia: There were more nations represented at the Bretton Woods conference in July 1944 than at the Paris Peace Conference of 1919. (Many were governments-in-exile; De Gaulle's Provisional Government of France was represented before it was recognized by the Americans or British.) Source: 1945: The War That Never Ended, Gregor Dallas.
Currently Reading: Neptune's Brood, Charles Stross. Sigh. Yes, Charles, it's very funny that robot privateers five thousand years in the future will use a Monty Python joke for their starship's name. Now go play outside.
PS: The Math Blog Statistics, April 2014 as that one had a pretty good month, really. I'm rather happy with it.