can someone smart explain this to me. Please.. An infinite number of mathematicians walk into a bar. The first one orders a beer. The second one, half a beer, T and thank you
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can someone smart explain this to me

An infinite number of
mathematicians walk
into a bar. The first one
orders a beer. The
second one, half a beer,
The third, a quarter of a
beer. The barman says
you' re all idiots" and
pours two beers.
...
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Views: 18156
Favorited: 30
Submitted: 05/17/2014
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Comments(100):

[ 100 comments ]
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#22 - RyanTheLeet (05/17/2014) [+] (2 replies)
stickied by shema
User avatar #45 - myfourthaccount ONLINE (05/18/2014) [+] (5 replies)
stickied by shema
suddenly, all of FJ commenters are mathematicians
We've all taken math classes before guys, no need to explain everything
User avatar #25 - lordvatican (05/17/2014) [-]
They just don't know their limits..
#92 to #25 - John Cena (05/18/2014) [-]
I've heard this joke before and what you said is usually how the joke ends. I like how everyone thinks you're brilliant.
#27 to #25 - roguetrooper (05/17/2014) [-]
Yes...perfect.
Yes...perfect.
User avatar #32 - lech (05/18/2014) [-]
This is described to be the sum of n = 0 to infinity, of (1/2)^n
Which in layman's terms, are:
1 + 1/2 + 1/4 + 1/8 + 1/16... (1/2)^n ...
If you try to sum this series, it'll become closer and closer to 2, but it won't even reach it.
You'll have to do this an infinite amount of times for it to ever reach 2.
User avatar #34 to #33 - lech (05/18/2014) [-]
I was talking about the title.
User avatar #35 to #34 - Rideandrum (05/18/2014) [-]
oh ha didnt see that... I sincerely apologize
#36 to #35 - lech (05/18/2014) [-]
It's okay, my dear.
It's okay, my dear.
#6 - croc (05/17/2014) [-]
This is called an infinite geometric series which can be calculated as (1/(1-a)) where |a| <1 In this case a=(1/2). Thus (1/(1-a))=2. a=1/2 because the series in expanded form looks something like this: (1/2)^0+(1/2)^2+(1/2)^3... and so on
#11 to #6 - croc (05/17/2014) [-]
The derivation of this is available on the wikipedia page for geometric series
#29 - drillaz (05/17/2014) [-]
The first beer is for the guy who ordered an entire beer.
The second is for the rest:
Half of it will go to #2
Half of the other half will go to #3
Half of the other half will go to #4
And so it will go forever.
#76 - cloakedone (05/18/2014) [-]
And the bartender got not tip.

because mathematicians are assholes and they have their limits....
budum, tshhhh
User avatar #18 - comicexplain ONLINE (05/17/2014) [-]
They'll never get past the second beer.
#57 - John Cena (05/18/2014) [-]
The Limit as amount of beer ordered approaches zero of total number of mathematicians ordering is 2. The bartender gets their joke and pours 2 beers to accommodate them.
User avatar #60 to #57 - Sabre (05/18/2014) [-]
That answer was totally nonsensical even though I think you understand the math. This, right here, is why the average person thinks math is hard.
Math isn't hard, people who get it just don't know how to communicate.
#63 to #60 - John Cena (05/18/2014) [-]
No, his answer is completely accurate. The amount of beer ordered, since they're always cutting it in half, is getting closer and closer to zero. As you keep adding it all up though, as the beer being ordered gets closer and closer to zero, the total amount of beer gets closer and closer to 2. His answer was completely accurate
#68 to #63 - John Cena (05/18/2014) [-]
He phrased it wrong. Should be:

The limit OF THE SUM of the amount of beer ordered AS THE NUMBER OF MATHEMATICIANS approaches INFINITY is 2.
User avatar #95 to #63 - Sabre (05/18/2014) [-]
I didn't say it was innacurate, quite the opposite in fact. I said he was **** at communicating because the first sentence is a grammatical aberration.
#90 - John Cena (05/18/2014) [-]
The summation of the geometric function 1/(2^n) is taken from 0 to infinity. While the function never techniquely reaches two, it becomes infinitetly close to two and as a result equals it.
User avatar #89 - alfrebecht (05/18/2014) [-]
Personally I would have said, "You're all causing severe stress to our concepts of reality by existing," and left the bar to cry in a corner.

But that's just me.
#77 - John Cena (05/18/2014) [-]
This always gets me a little upset, an easy way to look at it is : You step half way across a room in one step, the next step you take half of the half you just stepped ( 1/2 > 3/4), this is called an asymptote. No matter what, if you keep halving yourself you are never going to reach zero ( the other side of the room). You can get infintesimally close but you will never reach the other side.



Basically, My inner bill is getting rustled.
User avatar #100 to #77 - mindlessbastard ONLINE (05/19/2014) [-]
zenos paradox
User avatar #78 to #77 - Bigleague (05/18/2014) [-]
forgot to log in for comment : /
User avatar #87 to #78 - alfrebecht (05/18/2014) [-]
Well, the problem you're having is that infinitesimally close to 1 is the same as being 1.

This is necessary for motion to work, consider:

I'm walking across a room to the opposite wall (nothing fancy like in the previous examples, just walking from one end to the other).
Common sense tells us I will eventually reach the other side. BUT there are an infinite number of measurable points in between which I have to cross. Despite that, we know that I <do>.

It's a necessary part of mathematics that .9 repeating is the same as 1 (consider that 1/3 + 1/3 + 1/3 = 1 also).
User avatar #65 - exclamation (05/18/2014) [-]
Assuming that everything is additive, it would work like this:
1 + 1/2 + 1/4 + 1/8 + 1/16...
It works because there is infinite decimal place possibilities, which would inevitably add up to 2. Plus, there's gonna be a lot of ******* mathematicians in that bar.
#59 - John Cena (05/18/2014) [-]
My math class the advanced class btw was told to continuously cut a piece of paper in half, as were all the other classes.
They all stopped at an average of 1/64
We were getting up to and beyond 1/4096 and were needing to use magnifying glasses and tweezers. Yes we are insane.
#48 - snood (05/18/2014) [-]
You know, technically this is math?
#19 - robuntu (05/17/2014) [-]
They are idiots because.....

1.) Building codes only allow a certain number of people in the building at a time (fire marshals and all that jazz).
2.) An infinite number of mathematicians couldn't fit in the bar.
3.) Bars don't sell '1/2 beers' or '1/4 beers'. You can either buy a beer or not buy a beer.
User avatar #21 to #19 - shema (05/17/2014) [-]
and the winner is.
User avatar #51 to #19 - rattybastard (05/18/2014) [-]
You sound very fun at parties.
#24 to #19 - John Cena (05/17/2014) [-]
You can get 1/2 a beer in any British drinking establishment.
#58 to #24 - xaopdk (05/18/2014) [-]
So half a beer, isn't "a beer"?
#28 to #24 - robuntu (05/17/2014) [-]
Okay - sure. In the UK, you can probably order a 1/2 beer, so long as it is on tap. You can't buy a 1/2 bottle.

You also can't buy a 1/3rd, 1/4th, 1/5th, 1/6th, 1/7th, 1/8th, etc....

#42 to #28 - CaptainPugwash (05/18/2014) [-]
Shhhh.   
Just stop.
Shhhh.
Just stop.
#94 to #42 - robuntu (05/18/2014) [-]
Stop the rock, can't stop the rock
You can't stop the rock, stop the rock
You can's stop the rock, can't stop the rock

#20 - John Cena (05/17/2014) [-]
if the bar could fit an infinite number of people, and you could order fractions of beers, then they would be idiots because since the amount ordered by the next mathematician is always half of the next one, they will get infinitely close to two beers total but never hit it.
#91 - repostsrepost (05/18/2014) [-]
the first orders a beer. All the infinity other mathematicians order half of the amount of beer of the mathematician preceding him and it will approach two beers although never reaching it exactly.
#86 - drasticdragon (05/18/2014) [-]
Great, jokes about geometric series that my math teacher like to tell...
#82 - givememoarpony (05/18/2014) [-]
archimedes ******* owned zeno back in the day. he did this with quarters instead of halves, but you can still prove it for halves with his result:

1/4+1/64+1/256+1/1024+.... = 1/3
1/2+1/8+1/32+1/128+1/512+... = 2(1/4+1/64+1/256+1/1024+...) = 2/3
1 = 1
+_________________________
1+1/2+1/4+1/8+1/16+... = 1/3 + 2/3 + 1 = 2.

Or you can think of the black and white squares as one horizontal rectangle, and the gray square as its half, so it would give the answer without this dangerous addition over infinite sums. In adding infinite sums, especially the ones that diverge, you must make sure not to move the coefficients around, for that can actually change the value. but since this sum is absolutely convergent it has no problem like that.
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