Math Peeve

Hey Guys, in your 4/7 odometer puzzler answer, you were doing fine until the last comment. i.e. correct usage of the ‘10 times’; but at the end you used the ‘10 times more than’. Plz do not make that mistake again; esp given your engineering credentials.

Mille Grazie.

Click and Clack have no engineering credentials, they studied humanities.

@txtinkerer- I don’t understand your peeve. What difference are you making between “10 times” and “10 times more than”? In the published answer they never say “10 times more than”. What mistake are you refering to?

Click and Clack have no engineering credentials, they studied humanities.

HUH…Try again…

MIT doesn’t even offer a degree in humanities.

Both Tom and Ray have engineering degrees from MIT. Just to get into MIT you need to have excelled in Math and Science in high-school (usually the top of your class)…and score very high in the Math portion of the SAT’s. My daughter when to high-school with a guy who scored 730 in the Math part of the SAT’s…4.0 average…and was NOT accepted to MIT…Got into Harvard though.

@MikeInNY - incorrect on all counts.

“Both Tom and Ray have engineering degrees from MIT”

Nope, they don’t.

Per Ray’s bio on this web site: “I ended up with a degree in humanities and science.”

Tom doesn’t list his degree.

From Wiki:

" Ray Magliozzi has a bachelor of science degree in humanities and science from MIT, while Tom has a bachelor of science degree in economics from MIT and an MBA and DBA from the Boston University Graduate School of Management"

So, as I said, neither has a degree in engineering.

“MIT doesn’t even offer a degree in humanities”

Nope, I just checked a couple, like anthropology, political science, and economics, and you can get a degree in them, I’m sure there are others.

Per Ray's bio on this web site: "I ended up with a degree in humanities and science."

There’s a BIG difference in a Humanities degree and a Humanities and Science degree from MIT. The emphasis is still on Science/Technology. While a college like Boston University (excellent college also) a Humanity degree is NOT Science/Technology related.

You are right…their degrees were in Science instead of Engineering. But I have an undergraduate degree in Computer Science…and the direct path from college to work is as a Software Engineer.

Also a Economics degree is VERY VERY VERY heavy in Math. Economics is basically a degree in Math/Business. Tom has a degree in Economics.

Back in the 60’s there weren’t separate degrees in Electrical and Mechanical engineering. It was just Engineering. The same thing with Science degrees. You studied pretty much all the sciences for an undergraduate degree. Your last year you may have specialized a little. You could take classes in Computer Science, but NOT get a degree in computer science. Just a degree in Science.

There’s a HUGE difference between Humanities and Science.

The “T” in MIT stands for Technology. Emphasizing Technology/Math. That’s why they require such high standards in Math. You don’t go to MIT to major in English or History.

But lets take a look at what the OP was complaining about. Both have TECHNICAL degrees which requires a LOT OF MATH. Maybe where you went to college they don’t require much math. But the OP’s point was that since they had this technology background they should get the answer right. I’m unfamiliar with the question to know if they were right or wrong.

Mike, you have the most amazing way of saying “Oops, I was wrong.” Including insults and unnecessary attacks.


the peeve is that ‘10 times longer’ is not correct. it takes 10 times as long.

i can explain further if needed.

Economics is in the school of humanities, arts, and social science at MIT, not the school of science. Not what I’d call a technical degree. Nothing wrong with it, I’m sure it requires lots of math, depending on the area studied. Still baffled at your reaction to my factual statement that C and C don’t have engineering degree, and that they studied humanities. Both true. The science degree would have some math, more or less depending on the area. Biology vs comp sci, for example.

Economics is in the school of humanities, arts, and social science at MIT, not the school of science. Not what I'd call a technical degree

REALLY - At a MINIMUM a Economics major takes Calc I, I and III. Statistics and Quantitative Analysis. Usually add in Numerical Analysis, plus some electives.

Biology vs comp sci, for example.

You have to take a lot of math for EACH of those classes. It’s NOT just taking math classes…you core Biology classes all have math in it. You need the math skills to do the class work. It’s NOT the same as some working on a degree in English who takes a Math elective. The take the class and then forget about it. In computer science and Biology you continue using your math skills throughout your studies.

Degree schmee, I wish I’d had the wherewithall to fenagle a lucrative car show. They’ve done well.

One of us should poipnt out to textinkerer that they boys have retired and material on teh shows is all reruns. For which I’m sure the brothers get paid. For doing nothing. I worship at their alter.

Some of these are quibbling maybe. But when they said “10 time longer”, that part is indeed a tad askew. How long it takes to get to 1 M miles depends on how many miles you drive per year. If you always drive the same number of miles per year, yes, it is 10 times a long, but who drives the same car the same number of miles each and every year for 30 or 40 years? The odometer change, it does indeed represent 10 times as many miles, but can’t be generally said to be 10 times longer.

If the overall average speed stays the same, then it does take 10 times as long in driving time, but not necessarily in calendar time. Once again, describing time can be ambiguous.

And back in the 70’s most colleges did NOT offer degrees in computer science. You could take computer science classes in the Math department or EE department, but NO separate degree in CS.

As for Engineer degrees being all one…Many universities didn’t have separate disciplines in Electrical Engineering and mechanical engineering right up to the LATE 60’s…which by the way is the time frame Tom and Ray graduated from MIT.

WOW, and I just got flamed for supposedly using a “nasty tone” in one of my posts!

Mike - MIT’s EE department dates to 1902, others to pre-WWII, many others to the late '50s.

The chem., mechanical, and civil engineering departments of most universities date to the early 1900s.

Granted, the new electronics/computer/bio/nano technologies have resulted in the creation of new engineering disciplines, but in 1935 one was a specific type of engineer (mechanical engineer, for my father), not an ‘engineer’.

And how this has anything to do with C&C is a puzzle!

Purdue - Computer Science degree program in 1962

Please show me where I said NO COLLEGE offered a CS degree? I’ll wait. I did say MANY colleges…never said ALL. MIT did NOT offer a degree in CS in 1962. Neither did many colleges…I suspect very very few.

MIT’s electrical engineering degree in 1882 was part of the physics department. As with many colleges back then.

Quote from Website - “under Professor Charles Cross, at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology began offering the first option of Electrical Engineering within a physics department.”

It WASN’T a separate discipline it is today. I’ve worked with engineers who had degrees from the 50’s and 60’s. They were all engineering degrees…that may have emphasized EE or ME, but they were under the same college. Now MOST colleges keep ME separate from EE. Some have different colleges. Same for Computer Science. When I graduated from college CS wasn’t offered at Syracuse University. You could take CS classes but NOT get a degree in CS. You could get a degree in Math with an emphasis on CS. NOW they have their own school of Information Systems.

But let’s get back to the original POST. MIT is a technology college. Tom and Ray’s degrees were TECHNICAL degrees heavy in Math (which the OP was complaining about). Tom’s degree was in Humanities and Science. Not HUMANITIES. BIG DIFFERENCE. A degree in Humanities at MOST colleges and you don’t even take ONE math class. And the OP was making the reference since Tom and Ray had a technology background they shouldn’t be making a math mistake (and as I said before I’m not familiar with what they were talking about so I don’t know if they were right or wrong).

People disagree about things all the time here. Many of those bones of contention aren’t even related to the original questions. It usually does not require insults, yelling capital letters, and cursing – even though partially redacted. Mike, you should know better than this by now. Your comments were unnecessary, even in the face of further antagonism by asecular. Asecular, you didn’t have to bait him further. Discussion has been edited. Don’t take it any further, unless you’re going to be civil.