# mathematical joke

## Wife or mistress

A doctor, a lawyer and a mathematician were discussing the relative merits of having a wife or a mistress.

The lawyer says: "Certainly a mistress is better. If you have a wife and want a divorce, it causes all sorts of legal problems.

The doctor says: "It's better to have a wife because the sense of security lowers your stress and that is good for your health.

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## Statistics and numbers

A Statistics Department is hiring mathematicians. Three recent graduates are invited for an interview: one has a degree in pure mathematics, another one in applied math, and the third one obtained his B.Sc. in statistics.

All three are asked the same question: "What is one third plus two thirds?"

The pure mathematician: "It's one."

The applied mathematician takes out his pocket calculator, punches in the numbers, and replies: "It's 0.999999999."

The statistician: "What do you want it to be?"

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## thirteen-dimensional space

A mathematician and his best friend, an engineer, attend a public lecture on geometry in thirteen-dimensional space.

"How did you like it?" the mathematician wants to know after the talk.

"My head's spinning", the engineer confesses. "How can you develop any intuition for thirteen-dimensional space?"

"Well, it's not even difficult. All I do is visualize the situation in arbitrary N-dimensional space and then set N = 13."

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## Empty hotel

A biologist, a physicist and a mathematician were sitting in a street cafe watching the crowd. Across the street they saw a man and a woman entering a building. Ten minutes they reappeared together with a third person.

"They have multiplied", said the biologist.

"Oh no, an error in measurement", the physicist sighed.

"If exactly one person enters the building now, it will be empty again", the mathematician concluded.

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## Betting at the races

A mathematician, a physicist, an engineer went again to the races and laid their money down. Commiserating in the bar after the race, the engineer says,

"I don't understand why I lost all my money. I measured all the horses and calculated their strength and mechanical advantage and figured out how fast they could run..."

The physicist interrupted him: "...but you didn't take individual variations into account. I did a statistical analysis of their previous performances and bet on the horses with the highest probability of winning..."

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## Let me be out

An engineer, a physicist, and a mathematician are trying to set up a fenced-in area for some sheep, but they have a limited amount of building material. The engineer gets up first and makes a square fence with the material, reasoning that it's a pretty good working solution. "No no," says the physicist, "there's a better way." He takes the fence and makes a circular pen, showing how it encompasses the maximum possible space with the given material.