[STORY 1/12/2009] And I had better not hear you singing!

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Re: [STORY 1/12/2009] And I had better not hear you singing!

Postby The Old Hack on Mon Jan 19, 2009 4:22 am

Darekun wrote:Japanese didn't have numerals per se until the arabic ones were copied from the west - of course, we didn't have them until we copied them ourselves. Numerals seem rare in languages; most just use words for numbers, like our "one", "two", etc. Japanese's words are "いち", "に", etc.

The reason may be traced to the history of mathematics. The one big problem in number language was to invent a convenient system for writing down numbers. Anyone who knows Roman numerals will know how hard it is to write 'one million' down using them -- at least in any manageable form. No European mathematician ever solved this problem, but a couple thousand years ago some ancient Hindu genius invented positional notation. He or possibly she used a dot to signify what the Arabs later turned into the zero when they adapted these Hindu numerals into the Arab system we still use today. To my knowledge, no group of mathematicians have ever come up with a similar notion before encountering Arab numerals, and since the system is so superior to anything else known, most languages are happy to absorb it.
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Re: [STORY 1/12/2009] And I had better not hear you singing!

Postby Dragonstar on Mon Jan 19, 2009 5:22 am

Prior to Arabic Numerals, there were no dedicated numerals. People simply used letters, the most famous being of course Roman Numerals. Numerologists often try to find connections between words and the numbers they represent, using the letters-as-numerals method. Some interesting results are that Nero Caesar is the number 666, and both God and Love add up to the same number in a variety of languages.
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Re: [STORY 1/12/2009] And I had better not hear you singing!

Postby Tenebrais on Mon Jan 19, 2009 7:48 am

The Old Hack wrote:Anyone who knows Roman numerals will know how hard it is to write 'one million' down using them -- at least in any manageable form.


A million is easy - it's M with an accent over it. I don't think most fonts have it, though.
Now, one less than a million, that's tricky. Or even a third of ten. The numerals were rarely used for more than simple counting.
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Re: [STORY 1/12/2009] And I had better not hear you singing!

Postby Illusionist on Mon Jan 19, 2009 9:09 am

Darekun wrote:Japanese didn't have numerals per se until the arabic ones were copied from the west - of course, we didn't have them until we copied them ourselves.


I shall assume you are American. If so, you've always had numerals, as your culture is a splinter group of a culture that had numerals.

If you are not American, chances are you come from Europe, which means that before your culture had Arabic Numerals, it probably used Roman ones.

And Tenebrais, one less than a million would be IM. Like how IX is nine, or IC is 99 (IIRC)
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Re: [STORY 1/12/2009] And I had better not hear you singing!

Postby Tenebrais on Mon Jan 19, 2009 9:26 am

Illusionist wrote:And Tenebrais, one less than a million would be IM. Like how IX is nine, or IC is 99 (IIRC)

Touché. How about 888,888?
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Re: [STORY 1/12/2009] And I had better not hear you singing!

Postby Illusionist on Mon Jan 19, 2009 9:30 am

I don't know, I'm not what you'd call an expert.
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Re: [STORY 1/12/2009] And I had better not hear you singing!

Postby Tenebrais on Mon Jan 19, 2009 9:41 am

I don't know either, but 8s are the longest ones, so I'll stick with that.
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Re: [STORY 1/12/2009] And I had better not hear you singing!

Postby ForkBomb on Mon Jan 19, 2009 11:35 am

More importantly, how about pi? Or e? Or any of the other important numbers required for maths to exist? And more importantly, zero.
Roman numerals suck for anything other than simple counting. Arabic numerals and maths is IMO one of the most important things ever invented (or at least the concept, the symbols themselves are irrelevant).
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Re: [STORY 1/12/2009] And I had better not hear you singing!

Postby Dragonstar on Mon Jan 19, 2009 12:55 pm

Tenebrais wrote:
Illusionist wrote:And Tenebrais, one less than a million would be IM. Like how IX is nine, or IC is 99 (IIRC)

Touché. How about 888,888?


Code: Select all
_________
DCCCLXXXVMMMDCCCLXXXVIII


Each single letter is the 5 in that digit, the three letters that follow add 1 of that digit to it each.

Yes, I looked it up...
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Re: [STORY 1/12/2009] And I had better not hear you singing!

Postby Dragonstar on Mon Jan 19, 2009 12:59 pm

ForkBomb wrote:More importantly, how about pi? Or e? Or any of the other important numbers required for maths to exist? And more importantly, zero.
Roman numerals suck for anything other than simple counting. Arabic numerals and maths is IMO one of the most important things ever invented (or at least the concept, the symbols themselves are irrelevant).


I do not believe zero as a concept existed for Roman Mathematicians.

As for non-integers, I'm not sure. However, those are not required for Math to exist. Those are required for CONTINUOUS Math to exist. Discrete Math works just fine in integers only. In fact, computers work in Discrete Math, just use tricks to store non-integers.
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Re: [STORY 1/12/2009] And I had better not hear you singing!

Postby The Old Hack on Mon Jan 19, 2009 2:41 pm

Dragonstar wrote:I do not believe zero as a concept existed for Roman Mathematicians.

It didn't, nor for the Greek. By the time it had wandered westwards from the Hindi through Arabia, Rome had long ago fallen to the barbarians and lead poisoning and whatnot. Really, they should just have used those pipes for mercury simply to get it over with...
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Re: [STORY 1/12/2009] And I had better not hear you singing!

Postby nitpicking on Mon Jan 19, 2009 3:05 pm

According to one Latin teacher I know, the Romans never actually used the "this many less than" notation (e.g. IX=9, VL=45). It was invented by medieval Europeans after the fall.
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Re: [STORY 1/12/2009] And I had better not hear you singing!

Postby Dragonstar on Mon Jan 19, 2009 3:48 pm

The Old Hack wrote:
Dragonstar wrote:I do not believe zero as a concept existed for Roman Mathematicians.

It didn't, nor for the Greek. By the time it had wandered westwards from the Hindi through Arabia, Rome had long ago fallen to the barbarians and lead poisoning and whatnot. Really, they should just have used those pipes for mercury simply to get it over with...


Actually, I think they should of used those pipes to hit their worse-than-average leaders, like Caligula or Nero, over their heads, instead. However, knowing the judgements of your average person, they would let those two off and hit Hadrian, Constantine, and their ilk instead.
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Re: [STORY 1/12/2009] And I had better not hear you singing!

Postby Tarvok on Mon Jan 19, 2009 8:28 pm

Dragonstar wrote:
The Old Hack wrote:
Dragonstar wrote:I do not believe zero as a concept existed for Roman Mathematicians.

It didn't, nor for the Greek. By the time it had wandered westwards from the Hindi through Arabia, Rome had long ago fallen to the barbarians and lead poisoning and whatnot. Really, they should just have used those pipes for mercury simply to get it over with...


Actually, I think they should of used those pipes to hit their worse-than-average leaders, like Caligula or Nero, over their heads, instead.


They did... they just used these funny shaped pipes we call "swords," and it's the reason that so many emperors were established through armed conflict.

The problem wasn't this emperor or that emperor, it was Empire: an unsustainable political entity.
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Re: [STORY 1/12/2009] And I had better not hear you singing!

Postby nitpicking on Mon Jan 19, 2009 9:28 pm

The Roman Empire lasted from the time of Caesar until the mid-Fifteenth Century. If that's "unsustainable" I'd hate to see "unstable.
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Re: [STORY 1/12/2009] And I had better not hear you singing!

Postby The Old Hack on Mon Jan 19, 2009 10:02 pm

nitpicking wrote:The Roman Empire lasted from the time of Caesar until the mid-Fifteenth Century. If that's "unsustainable" I'd hate to see "unstable.

Actually the Roman Empire is alive and well and stretches from Hamburg to Murmansk. It's been moving around quite a bit since it got its first Uryuom Emperor in 1386, at one point mainly occupying Antarctica, Tibet and New Mexico.

...what do you mean, that history line didn't count?
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Re: [STORY 1/12/2009] And I had better not hear you singing!

Postby Chaos Priest on Mon Jan 19, 2009 10:36 pm

What do you mean "... what do you mean, that history line didn't count?" Of course it doesn't count! They can't very well keep calling themselves the Roman Empire if they haven't had control of Rome for hundreds of years.
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Re: [STORY 1/12/2009] And I had better not hear you singing!

Postby The Old Hack on Tue Jan 20, 2009 12:30 am

Chaos Priest wrote:What do you mean "... what do you mean, that history line didn't count?" Of course it doesn't count! They can't very well keep calling themselves the Roman Empire if they haven't had control of Rome for hundreds of years.

But they do! Their current Imperial capital is Rome, Illinois.
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Re: [STORY 1/12/2009] And I had better not hear you singing!

Postby Illusionist on Tue Jan 20, 2009 8:22 am

Dragonstar wrote:
The Old Hack wrote:
Dragonstar wrote:I do not believe zero as a concept existed for Roman Mathematicians.

It didn't, nor for the Greek. By the time it had wandered westwards from the Hindi through Arabia, Rome had long ago fallen to the barbarians and lead poisoning and whatnot. Really, they should just have used those pipes for mercury simply to get it over with...


Actually, I think they should of used those pipes to hit their worse-than-average leaders, like Caligula or Nero, over their heads, instead. However, knowing the judgements of your average person, they would let those two off and hit Hadrian, Constantine, and their ilk instead.


Constantine would deserve it. He ruined the Empire.
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Re: [STORY 1/12/2009] And I had better not hear you singing!

Postby Dragonstar on Tue Jan 20, 2009 9:07 am

nitpicking wrote:The Roman Empire lasted from the time of Caesar until the mid-Fifteenth Century. If that's "unsustainable" I'd hate to see "unstable.



If you count the Holy Roman Empire, and its successor the German/Prussian Empire, it lasted until WWI.
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Re: [STORY 1/12/2009] And I had better not hear you singing!

Postby nitpicking on Tue Jan 20, 2009 10:55 pm

Dragonstar wrote:
nitpicking wrote:The Roman Empire lasted from the time of Caesar until the mid-Fifteenth Century. If that's "unsustainable" I'd hate to see "unstable.



If you count the Holy Roman Empire, and its successor the German/Prussian Empire, it lasted until WWI.

If you want to really stretch it, the reason the Czars of Russia were the "Romanovs" was their very plausible claim to be the hereditary emperors of Rome. (A founder marred a princess of the Eastern Roman Empire.) So right until the Russian Revolution by that logic, too.

However, the Eastern Roman Empire, with its laws and traditions, actually did continue until the Ottoman Turks conquered Constantinople.
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Re: [STORY 1/12/2009] And I had better not hear you singing!

Postby CaliforniaDave on Tue Jan 20, 2009 11:49 pm

nitpicking wrote:...until the Ottoman Turks conquered Constantinople.


Somebody's gonna say it, so it might as well be me:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vsQrKZcYtqg
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Re: [STORY 1/12/2009] And I had better not hear you singing!

Postby Stardrake_ on Wed Jan 21, 2009 1:35 am

Dragonstar wrote:
nitpicking wrote:The Roman Empire lasted from the time of Caesar until the mid-Fifteenth Century. If that's "unsustainable" I'd hate to see "unstable.



If you count the Holy Roman Empire, and its successor the German/Prussian Empire, it lasted until WWI.

This would be the HRE that was described in it's day as being neither holy (they even had a couple of emperors excommunicated), Roman (not a successor to Rome except in the most tenuous manner, and was closer to being a successor to one of the portions of Charlemagne's empire) or an empire (a cheap shot at just how much power the emperors actually had)?

I'm not sure I'd call Prussia a successor either - more of a conqueror. By that logic, the Ottoman Empire could be claimed to be a successor to the Byzantine.
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Re: [STORY 1/12/2009] And I had better not hear you singing!

Postby horus on Wed Jan 21, 2009 7:42 am

CaliforniaDave wrote:
nitpicking wrote:...until the Ottoman Turks conquered Constantinople.


Somebody's gonna say it, so it might as well be me:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vsQrKZcYtqg


Thank You, CaliforniaDave! That was just what I needed to get my eyes open this morning.

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Re: [STORY 1/12/2009] And I had better not hear you singing!

Postby Illusionist on Wed Jan 21, 2009 8:14 am

nitpicking wrote:
Dragonstar wrote:
nitpicking wrote:The Roman Empire lasted from the time of Caesar until the mid-Fifteenth Century. If that's "unsustainable" I'd hate to see "unstable.



If you count the Holy Roman Empire, and its successor the German/Prussian Empire, it lasted until WWI.

If you want to really stretch it, the reason the Czars of Russia were the "Romanovs" was their very plausible claim to be the hereditary emperors of Rome. (A founder marred a princess of the Eastern Roman Empire.) So right until the Russian Revolution by that logic, too.


The German Empire lasted longer than the Russian one. Not by long, mind.
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