Yet Another Cycling Forum
Off Topic => The Pub => Topic started by: hellymedic on August 01, 2014, 03:53:23 pm

I do wish the journos reporting this tragic story could count!
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/ukengland28611078 (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/ukengland28611078)

They can  they have rounded down to whole years. It wasn't 13 years

They appear to have edited the wording from 'ago' to 'later'...

From an official document published by a large manufacturing company, later revised when I told them about it:
0.01% failure rate (1000 ppm)

I think it might have been mentioned in another thread at the time but there was a Coop ad recently that claimed a bank holiday weekend was a third longer than a regular weekend.
:facepalm:

Well it is a third day longer..

(https://scontentbams.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotosxpf1/t31.08/q79/s720x720/1939433_1023685690994217_8033129593823460003_o.jpg)

So? There are many places that sell coffee but do not have a store.

A surge in immigration from within the European Union (EU) was behind the increase as twothirds of all immigrants to the UK in the period  214,000 out of 560,000  came from within the EU.
From today's Telegraph. Just as likely to be cringeworthy editing/proofreading probably, but still...

My company forgot last years promised 6% pay rise so I grumbled. So they said this year they would pay me 6% and 4% = 10% this year. Surely 10% is 6% and 3.77%.

Recently decided to purchase a Jawbone UP24 to do a bit of quantified selfing (mostly interested in the sleep monitoring / reporting) having got some Love2Shop vouchers to use up.
I then spotted I could order it in to my local Halfords, which meant I could also use my British Cycling discount. Every little helps etc..
List price of £104.99, the girls on the till between them decide to not simply scan in the barcode for the BC discount but enter it manually. I quote: 'So, ten percent of that. That's...twelve pound fifty'.
Nice little bonus for me, just disappointing when it's one of those simple ones to calculate!

From today's Independent.
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/ukpoliceshootingstatisticsdischargefirearmsfiguresfreddiegraybatonkillingshomicidea7160391.html (http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/ukpoliceshootingstatisticsdischargefirearmsfiguresfreddiegraybatonkillingshomicidea7160391.html)
British Police fire guns 7 times in one year.
British population 64M
USA population 319M
The United States of course has a bigger population than the UK – Britain has 64.1 million residents, the US 319 million. But on a percapita basis, Britain’s rate of police gun use would translate into US police using their guns on 84 occasions in an entire year. This would be an unthinkably low number.
How does 7 * 5 = 84?

My company forgot last years promised 6% pay rise so I grumbled. So they said this year they would pay me 6% and 4% = 10% this year. Surely 10% is 6% and 3.77%.
Not necessarily. Depends on how they calculate it. 6% of your salary plus 4% of your pay before the 6% raise is 10%.

Almost any advertisement claiming a discount...
"Everything up to 50% off!!!"
::)

Not quite arithmetic, but "it's Thursday, welcome to the start of finals week on masterchef"
Surely midway through finals week?

The start of a maths lesson, 197{ahem!}; a maths teacher flinging marked homework jotters at pupils. He arrives at that belonging to a Boy Lurker...
Boy Lurker! 3 times 3?
Boy Lurker, rapidly and confidently, six sir.
*A moment's silence for the awful truth to sink in.*
A pitying look from the maths teacher as the Boy Lurker cringes at his desk whilst his schoolfellows pour (well deserved) scorn and derision upon him.
I had made _exactly_ the same error in the homework, I'd done all the hard stuff (chiz algebra) perfectly but stuffed up basic arithmetic. Over the years MrsLurker has come to recognise that my arithmetic is a little, umm, fuzzy and does our accounts. It's probably for the best. :)

Almost any advertisement claiming a discount...
"Everything up to 50% off!!!"
::)
Even worse (for the customer), something like 'up to 25% discount'. Seen it only once and decided to pass on by.
Local shoe shop offered BOGOF  um?

Free left with every right!

I've seen BOGOF on eyebrow threading, which makes even less sense than shoes.

Surely BOGOF on shoes, eyebrows and any other obviously pairs are simply an attempt at humour. I remember the surgeon trying to make the same joke DURING my vasectomy years ago.

Surely BOGOF on shoes, eyebrows and any other obviously pairs are simply an attempt at humour. I remember the surgeon trying to make the same joke DURING my vasectomy years ago.
To be fair, you don't want actually funny jokes during a vasectomy...

Good point.

No, TV's Henry Coles, a motorcycle introduced in 1958 is 58 years old. That, by any stretch of the imagination, is not "nearly 70".

Mrs F was never that much into Numbers and all.
She had to do a Tax module at Law School back in the day.
I remember trying to help out with the basic problem:
If something costs £100, and we add 10% tax, it then costs £110. That's fine.
But why can't I just remove the tax element by removing 10% of the £110?
She's still not convinced about the arithmetic, and suspects alien involvement.

No, TV's Henry Coles, a motorcycle introduced in 1958 is 58 years old. That, by any stretch of the imagination, is not "nearly 70".
I too am that age and of that vintage.
I am CERTAINLY NOT 'nearly 70'!

No, TV's Henry Coles, a motorcycle introduced in 1958 is 58 years old. That, by any stretch of the imagination, is not "nearly 70".
I dunno 58 is nearly 60 which is the same order of magnitude as 70 sooo if you wave your hands enough it is nearly(ish). :)
Entirely irrelevant aside. Saw him, that Cole bloke, with his mate Sam this lunchtime at The Plough at Kelmscott.

20161947 = 69. That makes me cringe.

No, TV's Henry Coles, a motorcycle introduced in 1958 is 58 years old. That, by any stretch of the imagination, is not "nearly 70".
I too am that age and of that vintage.
I am CERTAINLY NOT 'nearly 70'!
Perhaps fair enough when you're talking about a motorcycle and want to emphasise how amazingly advanced it was.
"Despite being designed 58 years ago, the Norazuki 500 Death Star Red Dwarf is technologically identical to a modern motorcycle, featuring overhead valves, electronic ignition and an early form of antilock braking."
Sounds quite impressive.
"Despite being born 58 years ago, Helen is anatomically identical to a modern human, featuring stereoscopic eyes, opposable thumbs and an early form of bipedal locomotion."
Hmmm...

I was born in 1958, and am 58. I find that curiously satisfying, and symmetrical

So do I!
But
I am not 'nearly 70'.
We have outlived Prince and Michael Jackson born that year.

Surely BOGOF on shoes, eyebrows and any other obviously pairs are simply an attempt at humour. I remember the surgeon trying to make the same joke DURING my vasectomy years ago.
To be fair, you don't want actually funny jokes during a vasectomy...
I dunno. During mine, the crool nurse showed me the first bit of tube they had snipped out, balanced on the tip of her gloved finger.
"Don't touch me" she warned "I'm sterile "
"And I soon will be" I replied, as they moved from left bollock to right.

Opinions vary on how many children grow up thinking the wrong man is their father, but German studies put the figure at between less than 4% and more than 10%.
So 04% or 10100% then? But definitely not 59% :facepalm:
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/aug/29/germanyplanforcemothersrevealchildsbiologicalfather

No, between a number less than 4 and a number greater than 10, so definitely including the range 410 but maybe not including the ranges 04 and 10100

Re. the test of autonomous cars in Singapore: the area is only 2 square kilometres (OK so far) on a side(!)

No, between a number less than 4 and a number greater than 10, so definitely including the range 410 but maybe not including the ranges 04 and 10100
Well deciphered.
Its almost certain that this one was the work of an innumerate journo (i.e. most of them). But this would have been so easy to fix with the little word "about" (or even "roughly").
Frustrating, but not surprising.

No, between a number less than 4 and a number greater than 10, so definitely including the range 410 but maybe not including the ranges 04 and 10100
Well deciphered.
Its almost certain that this one was the work of an innumerate journo (i.e. most of them). But this would have been so easy to fix with the little word "about" (or even "roughly").
Frustrating, but not surprising.
I thought it was awkwardly phrased rather than innumerate  and not even that hard to decipher.
But I'd have gone for something like "at least around 1 in 25, but perhaps as many as 1 in 10 ..."

No, between a number less than 4 and a number greater than 10, so definitely including the range 410 but maybe not including the ranges 04 and 10100
Well I know that, but surely the thing to say would have been between 3 and 11%!

I've spent much of the afternoon trying to make sense of someone else's code in relation to units.
The Help File and the Program were inconsistent, and investigation with actual numbers became a maze of twisty passages.
The code can take inputs in a variety of units ( typical oilfield nonsense ), and generates simultaneous outputs in various units which seemed to be incorrectly labelled. It seemed the code was producing the correct answers, but in orders of magnitude wrong ( ie the units were incorrectly prefixed with K or M )
The decoding of this required a bunch of headscratching as to what they authors actually meant.
Here are some examples:
hm3. (Hectometres) cubed. Not Hecto (Meters cubed). 100m x 100m x100m. 1 hm3=1000000 m^3.
MMBBL. 10^6 ( one Million ) Stock Tank Barrels. A Barrel is BBL. But in Awl Field Talk, a Million is prefixed MM sometimes. Not just M.
Bft3. Billion ( 10^9 ) Standard Cubic Feet.

And an Mbbl is 1000 bbls. Bloody confusing until you get used to it.
But then go to world of corrosion where they quote corrosion rates interchangeably as either mpy or mmpy, where mpy is 1/1000 of an inch per year and mmpy is a millimeter per year. :facepalm:

Given the accuracy of corrosion prediction, does that factor of 25(ish) matter?

There's a dedicated circle of hell for this stuff, isn't there?

If there isn't, there should be.

If there isn't, there should be.
There is, it's called the EU emissions trading shecme (EUETS) where I'm required to verify operator's emissions in tonnes of CO2, but they use units like those above.
MMscf ffs :demon:
The biggest issue is things like Feanor's above where folks take in stuff in volume, do stuff to it and try and spit out something else at the end. Teh problem is that many of them (reservoir engineers in partic) have a very fixed view of the world and use fixed factors in their code that screw things up.
Doing everything in mass is much more sensible as that is conserved throughout, only do mass/vol conversions right at the end and use up to date factors

Given the accuracy of corrosion prediction, does that factor of 25(ish) matter?
God alone knows. I try to keep away from the rust department as much as possible.

About 40 thou to a mm, isn't it?

University nearly kills studes with caffeine...
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/ukenglandtyne38744307 (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/ukenglandtyne38744307)

I read that one, both humorous and :o at the same time

University nearly kills studes with caffeine...
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/ukenglandtyne38744307 (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/ukenglandtyne38744307)
Back in the dim and distant past, when I was pretending to be doing a degree in Biochemistry and Chemistry, we were regularly presented with a list of the chemistry we would be using in upcoming labs. The idea was then to attend the library and consult such fabulous references such as N. Irving Sax's 'The dangerous properties of industrial chemicals' or the Merck Index, or similar works, and write up a complete safety audit for each chemical we were going to use, including what to do if it was spilled or ingested. Not presenting a safety audit resulted in not doing the lab, and this was in the 80's, long before elfin safety and risk assessments were anything like as prevalent as today. I remember having to look up caffeine for one experiment, and finding new respect for the fine white crystals that filled the sample tube at the end of the day. The story reads like there were neither safety audits nor supervision for that experiment  an audit alone should have primed someone to notice that they were out by a factor of 10, based on LD_{50} alone, surely?

I have a friend who has been a postdoc at a few unis and she says H&S can be shocking in some places. There is limited supervision of younger students and researchers and when stuff goes wrong coverups are massive. Cutting corners only works for so long.
I hope other unis are reading that and thinking "SHIT, we'd better look at ourselves carefully too".

True story in (long) post decimal Britain....
Customer: 100 rolls please...
Rolls cost 4p each.
Shop Assistant to friend: What's 4 times 100?

True story in (long) post decimal Britain....
Customer: 100 rolls please...
Rolls cost 4p each.
Shop Assistant to friend: What's 4 times 100?
Can't be that long postdecimal if rolls anything costs 4p thobut.

"Rolls of what?" was my first thought.
:D ;) ::) :facepalm: ;D

SMD resistors, maybe...

There are plenty of scams that rely on people not being able to do arithmetic.
That's £10:84, please.
OK, I'll give you £20.84, and you give me a tenner back.
Ah, I don't have the 84. So i'll give you this shilling and a thruppney, and you can give me a groat back, if I take back my original £20 and give you a tenner and a groat instead. And there's a sheckel in it for you too.
Err...
This is why modern tills are programmed to try deal with this kind of thing.

True story in (long) post decimal Britain....
Customer: 100 rolls please...
Rolls cost 4p each.
Shop Assistant to friend: What's 4 times 100?
Graves' rolls were 3p when I was a young Penniless Student Oafette in 1976, rising to 5p by 1981.
Trufax.
If this had been around 1978, decimalisation would have been 7 years previously...
Can't be that long postdecimal if rolls anything costs 4p thobut.

Graves' rolls were 3p when I was a young Penniless Student Oafette in 1976, rising to 5p by 1981.
Trufax.
There's a Viz Top Tip along the lines of "keep all of your till receipts so that you can bore your grandchildren with greater accuracy in years to come" Were you an early adopter of this advice, helly? ;)

Graves' rolls were 3p when I was a young Penniless Student Oafette in 1976, rising to 5p by 1981.
Trufax.
There's a Viz Top Tip along the lines of "keep all of your till receipts so that you can bore your grandchildren with greater accuracy in years to come" Were you an early adopter of this advice, helly? ;)
:) ;) ;D No.
I sometimes have a very retentive memory thobut.
I wasn't even particularly Penniless, though managing my own budget was was a new experience.
Sheffield was cheap, student grants were generous and having multiple sibs in Higher Education cut parents' contribution considerably.
I became adept at making a Little Money Go A Long Way, which was easy then.
This was useful when Parents Stopped All Money as I had been Naughty.
Rice Pudding Hallamshire Hospital 4p/bowl...

From the lovely Bournemouth Echo.
Nursing home loses £8,000 per week which is '£32,000 per quarter'.
I thought there were 13 weeks in a quarter and 8,000 x 13 = £104,000.
Did she mean a (short) month?
http://www.bournemouthecho.co.uk/news/15987698.__39_It__39_s_a_shambles__39___NHS__39__new_patient_discharge_system_leaves_care_home_facing_closure/?ref=mr&lp=15 (http://www.bournemouthecho.co.uk/news/15987698.__39_It__39_s_a_shambles__39___NHS__39__new_patient_discharge_system_leaves_care_home_facing_closure/?ref=mr&lp=15)

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/nov/29/fouryearshottestrecordclimatechange
Average temperatures around the world so far this year were nearly 1C (33.8F) above preindustrial levels.
:facepalm:

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/nov/29/fouryearshottestrecordclimatechange
Average temperatures around the world so far this year were nearly 1C (33.8F) above preindustrial levels.
:facepalm:
Probably should be grateful they aren't up 274.15 kelvin

Never trusted those Foreignheits.

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/nov/29/fouryearshottestrecordclimatechange
Average temperatures around the world so far this year were nearly 1C (33.8F) above preindustrial levels.
:facepalm:
That is brilliantly daft.
Probably should be grateful they aren't up 274.15 kelvin
Anyone who watched the last series of Bake Off will have seen the little Amazon Alexa ads that bookended each commercial break. One of them had Our Intrepid Baker asking "Alexa, what's the boiling point of sugar?" to which Alexa replies "The boiling point of sugar is XXX degrees."
Now, leaving aside the fact that the question is nonsensical, since sugar doesn't have a boiling point as such, it really infuriated me that Alexa didn't specify the scale in her answer  I can't recall the exact figure quoted but I'm sure it must have been in Fahrenheit, which shouldn't be too surprising given that Alexa is Transpondian, but a) my old maths teacher would have given her a clout round the ear for such sloppiness, and b) it's the 21st feckin' century so use Celsius already. Anyway, I amused myself by imagining that Our Intrepid Baker guessed that Alexa was working in Kelvin and so put their sugar solution in the freezer to boil it...

Of course sugar has a boiling point,
which must be specified based on the exact composition i.e. a solution of x% w/w sugar in water boils at YY deg C at ZZ pressure.

Of course sugar has a boiling point,
which must be specified based on the exact composition i.e. a solution of x% w/w sugar in water boils at YY deg C at ZZ pressure.
Even then it's going to vary from batch to batch isn't it, what with sugar being a plantproduced compound and not just the same thing always?
Anyways, the original story is wonderfully silly.

Of course sugar has a boiling point,
which must be specified based on the exact composition i.e. a solution of x% w/w sugar in water boils at YY deg C at ZZ pressure.
My understanding is that dry sugar granules don't have a boiling point as such  they just break down into caramel when heated.
Sugar solution is a different matter.
Perhaps it's a question of terminology. I'm coming at this from a cook's perspective, not a chemist's.

I'm not sure of the right terminology, but it may be that solid sugar does sublimation, not boiling*:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sublimation_(phase_transition)
*Of course it's more complicated than that  and this is all physics, not chemistry IMHO!

Sugar does not melt or boil, it decomposes. For sugar to have either it would have to retain its molecular formula which it does not. When it is heated it is carmelized.
Caramel has a boiling point, so that's probably what Alexa's answer was. More specifically, the answer to the question: If you heat sugar in a pan at what temperature does the stuff in the pan start to boil?
But the solid>liquid stage is not reversible if caramelisation has taken place. If you cool molten caramel down it does not become sugar again.
Another thing that confuses matters is that as sugar is a solid (at normal temperatures) asking "what is the boiling point of sugar?" is like asking "what is the boiling point of ice?" It kind of makes sense but jars slightly.

I'm not sure of the right terminology, but it may be that solid sugar does sublimation, not boiling*:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sublimation_(phase_transition)
*Of course it's more complicated than that  and this is all physics, not chemistry IMHO!
It doesn't sublime, that is going straight from solid to gas, like CO2 (Dry Ice), it's a lot more complicated than that.
Apart from the descent into caramel, which then bubbles, if you have low enough moisture the sugar pyrolises and generates methanol as a byproduct, which is of course extremely flammable. This is why sugar mills regularly go kaboom.

I am very much liking the phrase
the descent into caramel
It should be a film title, or perhaps An Audax ...

The descent into Caramel should follow the struggle to Kirkstone and be cherished fondantly...

...and the climb must involve ganacheing of gears.
I'll stop now

But the finish is a sweet relief, almost the icing on the cake.
IGMC

Now, leaving aside the fact that the question is nonsensical, since sugar doesn't have a boiling point as such, it really infuriated me that Alexa didn't specify the scale in her answer  I can't recall the exact figure quoted but I'm sure it must have been in Fahrenheit, which shouldn't be too surprising given that Alexa is Transpondian, but a) my old maths teacher would have given her a clout round the ear for such sloppiness, and b) it's the 21st feckin' century so use Celsius already. Anyway, I amused myself by imagining that Our Intrepid Baker guessed that Alexa was working in Kelvin and so put their sugar solution in the freezer to boil it...
Presumably Alexa allows the user to configure their preferred units, date formats, etc. like most other Babbageengine user interfaces.
Also, if I was molishing an Englishlanguage TV advert for such a device, I might deliberately avoid specific units, so as to save half a second of expensive air time and avoid the need for different versions for different markets.

Alexa lets you choose her temperature and distance units. I don't think she offers Kelvin or parsecs* though.
And yes, she should have said sucrose will melt/decompose (depending on the water content, moisture is how you get inversion, that's really the difference between making caramel and golden syrup).
*yes, yes, I know, but Han Solo is always going to be more right than you, so give it up.

Alexa lets you choose her temperature and distance units. I don't think she offers Kelvin or parsecs* though.
And yes, she should have said sucrose will melt/decompose (depending on the water content, moisture is how you get inversion, that's really the difference between making caramel and golden syrup).
*yes, yes, I know, but Han Solo is always going to be more right than you, so give it up.
invert sugar syrup also needs an acid to do the "inversion". I'm not sure if golden syrup is inverted or not?

Golden syrup is partially inverted.
You don't strictly need acid (water will donate the protons), though it'll speed up the hydrolysis.

Alexa lets you choose her temperature and distance units. I don't think she offers Kelvin or parsecs* though.
And yes, she should have said sucrose will melt/decompose (depending on the water content, moisture is how you get inversion, that's really the difference between making caramel and golden syrup).
*yes, yes, I know, but Han Solo is always going to be more right than you, so give it up.
invert sugar syrup also needs an acid to do the "inversion". I'm not sure if golden syrup is inverted or not?
'Partially inverted refiners' syrup' if I recall the inscription on the Lyle's Golden Syrup correctly... ie a mixture of glucose, fructose & sucrose.

*yes, yes, I know, but Han Solo is always going to be more right than you, so give it up.
“Han Solo is dead.”  Nietzsche

Yes, and he's dead right.

Sugar is right, golden syrup is wrong, honey lives forever.

Forgot to ask Alexa the question this morning to see what it says, will ask this evening when back home.

Siri was surprisingly correct on this, vs it's usual ability to understand English
It directed me to a site that quite correctly pointed out that sugar does not boild but decomposes and caremelises, and refers to varying boiling point of syrups.
I may be being lulled into a false sense of security with Siri, heading for another disappointment

Anyone who watched the last series of Bake Off will have seen the little Amazon Alexa ads that bookended each commercial break. One of them had Our Intrepid Baker asking "Alexa, what's the boiling point of sugar?" to which Alexa replies "The boiling point of sugar is XXX degrees."
Now, leaving aside the fact that the question is nonsensical, since sugar doesn't have a boiling point as such, it really infuriated me that Alexa didn't specify the scale in her answer  I can't recall the exact figure quoted but I'm sure it must have been in Fahrenheit, which shouldn't be too surprising given that Alexa is Transpondian, but a) my old maths teacher would have given her a clout round the ear for such sloppiness, and b) it's the 21st feckin' century so use Celsius already. Anyway, I amused myself by imagining that Our Intrepid Baker guessed that Alexa was working in Kelvin and so put their sugar solution in the freezer to boil it...
I just tried this  Alexa told me it was 160° Celsius.

‘SuperEarth’ among trio of planets and six supernovae detected by Tess mission (https://www.theguardian.com/science/2019/jan/08/nasaspacecraftplanetearthtessmission)
Three new planets and six supernovae outside our solar system have been observed by Nasa’s planethunting Tess mission in its first three months.
Well TFFT ::)

BBC science (https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/scienceenvironment47000888) bitches.
(https://farm8.staticflickr.com/7923/46875543641_c1b42faec1_z.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/2eqeq1i)
bbc_science (https://flic.kr/p/2eqeq1i) by The Pingus (https://www.flickr.com/photos/the_pingus/), on Flickr

Since when was it 25 years from 1984 to 2018?
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/ukenglandbedsbucksherts47309945 (https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/ukenglandbedsbucksherts47309945)

even 1998 when he was released to 2018 isn't 25 years

The Daily Hate online has a picture article about WW2 fortifications. One of the captions starts
These two pictures show parts of a 1km (1.5 mile)long antitank wall..
:facepalm:

My own fault I guess for listening to "You and
Your Things and Your Paranoia Yours". However, they're just running an article about John Lewis and the bonus being paid this year. Apparently it's the lowest since 1953 at "Just 3%", while in the past it's been up as high "as 20%". 3% of what wasn't disclosed though. Gah.

3% of the recipient's annual salary.
They were clear enough about that on the news earlier, so maybe they just assume that anyone listening to Y&Y has had the Home Service on all day and will have absorbed these facts by osmosis.

Bataan regularly delivered; all four of his first five albums – Subway Joe (1968), Riot (1968), Poor Boy (1969) and Mr New York and The East Side Kids (1971) – were unambiguously about El Barrio, carrying images of the ghetto or everyday street life in New York.

I think this one is probably "Arithmetic that is too subtle for me." It's from a presentation of a medical trial. No one picked the presenter up on it, so I guess it makes sense to them.
There are four different domains: there is a bulbar domain, fine motor, gross motor and breathing, and all of these are scored 0 to 4, where 4 is normal function. So you have a maximum score of 48, which would be a normal person.
How is the maximum score 48 rather than 16?

being added to something else they forgotbtontell you about?
not so much makes me cringe, but one that played with my head recently. Zero factorial = 1.
the settheory explanation makes sense, but the numerical solution I read was a fudge.

The thing to remember is that half the people you meet are below average.

being added to something else they forgotbtontell you about?
not so much makes me cringe, but one that played with my head recently. Zero factorial = 1.
the settheory explanation makes sense, but the numerical solution I read was a fudge.
This one doesn't seem too sweet to be wholesome: https://youtu.be/Mfk_L4Nx2ZI
The thing to remember is that half the people you meet are below average.
Top half or bottom half?

The thing to remember is that half the people you meet are below average.
That largley depends on which average you are using.

Mrs F was never that much into Numbers and all.
She had to do a Tax module at Law School back in the day.
I remember trying to help out with the basic problem:
If something costs £100, and we add 10% tax, it then costs £110. That's fine.
But why can't I just remove the tax element by removing 10% of the £110?
She's still not convinced about the arithmetic, and suspects alien involvement.
I still find it working that if a share falls by 33%, say from 1.50 to 1, it needs to increase my by 50% to get back to where it was....

The thing to remember is that half the people you meet are below average.
That largley depends on which average you are using.
Central limit theorem says that it doesn't matter whether you use mean, median or (grouped) mode, Manotea is right.
In other news
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/worldasiachina49874969 (https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/worldasiachina49874969)
2 square metres is not 6.6 square feet... The fact that they've tried to show the equivalence makes me think it was (2 metres) squared, which is 4 square metres, or 43 square feet.

Surely 2 sq mtrs is 22 sq ft.
2 mtr sq is 43 sq ft.

The fact that they've tried to show the equivalence makes me think it was (2 metres) squared, which is 4 square metres, or 43 square feet.
That in itself leads to misunderstandings. it is not 2 metres squared but 2 metres square which means it is a square with 2 metre sides. I noticed this modern use of squared in one of those fly on the wall school programmes. In the answer to a question, little Johnny replied "2 metres squared" when the correct answer would have been "2 square metres". Little Johnny thought the 2 always meant squared. Of course the teacher did not correct him. Lets hope he never becomes a carpet fitter.

Yeah, I think what they're trying to suggest (though the unclear photo does little to corroborate this) is that the space is (2m)x(2m) or (6'7")x(6'7").
You're absolutely right that 2m^{2} is 22 sq ft.

The fact that they've tried to show the equivalence makes me think it was (2 metres) squared, which is 4 square metres, or 43 square feet.
That in itself leads to misunderstandings. it is not 2 metres squared but 2 metres square which means it is a square with 2 metre sides. I noticed this modern use of squared in one of those fly on the wall school programmes. In the answer to a question, little Johnny replied "2 metres squared" when the correct answer would have been "2 square metres". Little Johnny thought the 2 always meant squared. Of course the teacher did not correct him. Lets hope he never becomes a carpet fitter.
The teacher may well become a carpet fitter.

The fact that they've tried to show the equivalence makes me think it was (2 metres) squared, which is 4 square metres, or 43 square feet.
That in itself leads to misunderstandings. it is not 2 metres squared but 2 metres square which means it is a square with 2 metre sides. I noticed this modern use of squared in one of those fly on the wall school programmes. In the answer to a question, little Johnny replied "2 metres squared" when the correct answer would have been "2 square metres". Little Johnny thought the 2 always meant squared. Of course the teacher did not correct him. Lets hope he never becomes a carpet fitter.
The confusion probably comes from reading 2 m² as if m is a variable  we say a² as "a squared" rather than "square a's".

The confusion probably comes from reading 2 m² as if m is a variable  we say a² as "a squared" rather than "square a's".
I don't actually think that's confusing, unless you read it out: BODMAS^{[1]} requires that you square the metre (to get square metres), then multiply by 2.
Doing maths on the units is normal and ordinary in physics, so there's nothing particularly special about length and area. Unless your maths education stops at carpetfitting 101, I suppose.
_{[1] Other mnemonics are available.}

It's a reasonable mistake for a child to make, though. Not so forgivable for an adult, even if they do work for the Beeb  although I believe there are people who go into denial of maths once they leave school.
Reminds me for some reason of a candidate I once interviewed for a place as programming intern: I asked her what programming languages she had studied so far and she replied "I don't know, I wasn't paying attention".

Reminds me for some reason of a candidate I once interviewed for a place as programming intern: I asked her what programming languages she had studied so far and she replied "I don't know, I wasn't paying attention".
I think I remember offering to help her with some Java coursework. When asked what it was she didn't understand, the answer was "Well, Java".

Did anyone see: "Who wants to be a millionaire" a couple of weeks back? One of the questions was something like: What answer do you get if you add 9+8+7+6+5+4+3+2+1? The answers given were something like: 40, 42, 45 or 48.
Yes, they (a teacher if I remember) got it wrong. :facepalm:

Did anyone see: "Who wants to be a millionaire" a couple of weeks back? One of the questions was something like: What answer do you get if you add 9+8+7+6+5+4+3+2+1? The answers given were something like: 40, 42, 45 or 48.
Yes, they (a teacher if I remember) got it wrong. :facepalm:
Yes that was cringeworthy  to a point  she could have taken more time  but under that pressure in front of the cameras... easily done. There but the grace of bod...

The fact that they've tried to show the equivalence makes me think it was (2 metres) squared, which is 4 square metres, or 43 square feet.
That in itself leads to misunderstandings. it is not 2 metres squared but 2 metres square which means it is a square with 2 metre sides. I noticed this modern use of squared in one of those fly on the wall school programmes. In the answer to a question, little Johnny replied "2 metres squared" when the correct answer would have been "2 square metres". Little Johnny thought the 2 always meant squared. Of course the teacher did not correct him. Lets hope he never becomes a carpet fitter.
To be fair, as a scientist, I was puzzled to find that umpteen square metres of promised paint cover did not turn out to be as anticipated.

The public toilets have been closed for a couple of years. If you can't have a pee, have a pi!
https://www.bristol247.com/newsandfeatures/news/mathematicalgraffitiinthebearpit/

The fact that they've tried to show the equivalence makes me think it was (2 metres) squared, which is 4 square metres, or 43 square feet.
That in itself leads to misunderstandings. it is not 2 metres squared but 2 metres square which means it is a square with 2 metre sides. I noticed this modern use of squared in one of those fly on the wall school programmes. In the answer to a question, little Johnny replied "2 metres squared" when the correct answer would have been "2 square metres". Little Johnny thought the 2 always meant squared. Of course the teacher did not correct him. Lets hope he never becomes a carpet fitter.
To be fair, as a scientist, I was puzzled to find that umpteen square metres of promised paint cover did not turn out to be as anticipated.
To be fair, paintmanufacturer square metres are a bit like tentmanufacturer persons.

To be fair, paintmanufacturer square metres are a bit like tentmanufacturer persons.
Since a tent manufacturers designated four man tent is usually only suitable for three people, a three for two and a two for one I often wonder who their one man tents are designed for ....

For me!
and other persons of sensible size.
If only I could find the corresponding sleeping bag rather than one made for a 6' plus user.

When SmallestCub was a bit smaller than he is now^{[1]}, we decided that we could both fit in my Akto.
_{[1] Though not small enough to use that Jiffy bag as a sleeping bag any more.}

I'd have said it was a bit different. A 1person tent is the right size for 1.2 persons, a 2person for 1.8, a 3person for 2.6 and similar.

The fact that they've tried to show the equivalence makes me think it was (2 metres) squared, which is 4 square metres, or 43 square feet.
That in itself leads to misunderstandings. it is not 2 metres squared but 2 metres square which means it is a square with 2 metre sides. I noticed this modern use of squared in one of those fly on the wall school programmes. In the answer to a question, little Johnny replied "2 metres squared" when the correct answer would have been "2 square metres". Little Johnny thought the 2 always meant squared. Of course the teacher did not correct him. Lets hope he never becomes a carpet fitter.
It's quite likely that the teacher doesn't know the difference either. As Kim says, it's becomes an issue when read out loud. However, it also becomes an issue when people start to think that 2m^{2} is the same as (2m)^{2}. A few years ago I was invited to presentations from Masters level students on Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) projects. My general feedback at the end of the session was that at least 3/4 of the presentations were using the phrase xxx metres squared, when they meant xxx square metres. Using it as a mental shorthand is one thing, but telling the regulator that there will be loss of an important habitat of 100 square metres when you meant 10 square metres because you've said "10 metres, squared" could be the difference between the project being permissible or not.

I've always thought of 2m^{2} as 2 square metres and a space 2m x 2m as a 2metre square. Perhaps it would be clearer if we used a distinct term for area, so 2m^{2} would be 2 centiares.

Small wonder that the newspapers talk in football pitches, esp when the Gardyloo uses a US reporter and replaces field by pitch but doesn't change the figure.
Disclaimer: I haven't the foggiest idea how big a football pitch (or field) is. Several thousand square elephants, I should think.

I've always thought of 2m^{2} as 2 square metres and a space 2m x 2m as a 2metre square. Perhaps it would be clearer if we used a distinct term for area, so 2m^{2} would be 2 centiares.
Centiares? Not even in France, where people already talk in ares, have I heard that term.
Any relation of Nessus?

Confused by hectares? You will be after reading this!
https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/understandinglandsizesmeasurementannnwaukwa

Don't think I'll bother.

I've always thought of 2m^{2} as 2 square metres and a space 2m x 2m as a 2metre square. Perhaps it would be clearer if we used a distinct term for area, so 2m^{2} would be 2 centiares.
Centiares? Not even in France, where people already talk in ares, have I heard that term.
Any relation of Nessus?
No, that's the point. It's not a term in use but it might avoid confusion between square metres, metres squared and metre squares.

Teach the buggers properly to start with would work better than introducing unfamiliar terms and expecting them to remember.
I reckon that a lot of the confusion in the media results from reporters having learnt the terms at school but forgotten them for lack of use. I learnt physics in CGS units and was aware of MKS, but when SI arrived and everything got called after dead'uns I sortof tuned out.

Wikipedia tells me CGS = centimetre, gram, second and MKS = metre, kilogram, second. To my mind these are the same system, just at different scales. Isn't half the point of metric/SI that it's easy to relate between different scales because everything goes up and down in 10s, rather than an assortment of 12s, 16s, 20s and whatever in Imperial (and various other premetric systems)?

I've got a container of industrialstrength glyphosate  gardening, for the use of. The destructions specify dilutions in millilitres per hectare^{[1]}. Interestingly this manages to make the chemistry and the maths equally scary.
_{[1] Fairly sure that's nanometres...}

No, you'd be putting 10 times too much on!
1ml = 10^{6}m^{3}
1ha = 10^{4}m^{2}
1ml/ha = 10^{6}/10^{4}m = 10^{10}m = 1 ångström
Mind you, my experience of applying agrideath is that it's nighimpossible to spray anything like evenly.

Financial analyst: What are the prospects for Product X?
Big boss: Product X sells £3.2 million, which is 8% of total sales. We have the capacity to increase that to 15%.
FA: Okay... my maths isn't that great.
BB: Alright, we can basically almost double it.

Wikipedia tells me CGS = centimetre, gram, second and MKS = metre, kilogram, second. To my mind these are the same system, just at different scales. Isn't half the point of metric/SI that it's easy to relate between different scales because everything goes up and down in 10s, rather than an assortment of 12s, 16s, 20s and whatever in Imperial (and various other premetric systems)?
The danger with metricbased systems is losing track of the decimal point. I did this during my Alevel physics practical and the invigilator, who was wandering round making sure nobody was using a crafty AVOmeter, glanced at my pad and murmured "you might want to check that" as he passed my bench.

Financial analyst: What are the prospects for Product X?
Big boss: Product X sells £3.2 million, which is 8% of total sales. We have the capacity to increase that to 15%.
FA: Okay... my maths isn't that great.
BB: Alright, we can basically almost double it.
Depends on whether the total sales stay the same, or increase, or decrease...

The danger with metricbased systems is losing track of the decimal point. I did this during my Alevel physics practical and the invigilator, who was wandering round making sure nobody was using a crafty AVOmeter, glanced at my pad and murmured "you might want to check that" as he passed my bench.
Indeed. We (structural engineers) measure on site to mm, but work out loads in kN/m^{2} or kN/m. Steel section serial sizes are related to the dimension in mm, but the tables of section properties quote Z in cm^{3} and I in cm^{4} (zenzizenzic centimetres, FYI). Yield strengths of steels are quoted in MPa (N/mm^{2} or 10^{3}kN/m^{2}). Young's modulus is quoted in GPa (kN/mm^{2}).

Financial analyst: What are the prospects for Product X?
Big boss: Product X sells £3.2 million, which is 8% of total sales. We have the capacity to increase that to 15%.
FA: Okay... my maths isn't that great.
BB: Alright, we can basically almost double it.
Depends on whether the total sales stay the same, or increase, or decrease...
Not really. The question was about capacity not potential sales. The FA simply had to realize that 15 is approximately double 8.

Across the Bristol area, roughly three in four people over the age of 18 voted in the General Election. Across the country, it was fewer than two in three.
Nationally, turnout in the 2019 election was 67.2 per cent  down 1.6 per cent on the poll in 2017.

Across the Bristol area, roughly three in four people over the age of 18 voted in the General Election. Across the country, it was fewer than two in three.
Nationally, turnout in the 2019 election was 67.2 per cent  down 1.6 per cent on the poll in 2017.
So, fewer means either one or none.
Also, the bit "roughly three in four people over the age of 18 voted" seems to be either redundant or leaves me wondering about the proportion of under18 voters.

Also, the bit "roughly three in four people over the age of 18 voted" seems to be either redundant or leaves me wondering about the proportion of under18 voters.
Mr. Drumpf would say they were the Hillary voters.
Would it be clearer to say "roughly three in four people of voting age voted" ?

surely the easiest way would be to say 2sq.m and 2m^{2} to avoid confusion? Happens regularly in my industry  both the designations and confusion

Also, the bit "roughly three in four people over the age of 18 voted" seems to be either redundant or leaves me wondering about the proportion of under18 voters.
Mr. Drumpf would say they were the Hillary voters.
Would it be clearer to say "roughly three in four people of voting age voted" ?
Why not just three quarters in Bristol compared with twothirds across the country. When did fractions become so vulgar?

Across the Bristol area, roughly three in four people over the age of 18 voted in the General Election. Across the country, it was fewer than two in three.
Nationally, turnout in the 2019 election was 67.2 per cent  down 1.6 per cent on the poll in 2017.
So, fewer means either one or none.
Also, the bit "roughly three in four people over the age of 18 voted" seems to be either redundant or leaves me wondering about the proportion of under18 voters.
Good point about fewer, but if that were the problem, it would be in the Grammar thread. All I noticed is that 67.2% is more than two in three.

Kashmir covers around 86,000 sq miles (138 sq km), and is famed for the beauty of its lakes, meadows and snowcapped mountains.
From https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/worldasia51131294

If you order something that's basically a closed flexible band, that's to go round something round, and it's described as having "diameter: 4cm".
When you get it, you lay it flat on a surface (so it's doubled up) and measure it. 4cm.
IS that it's diameter?? Cos to me, that's half the circumference.

Monday puzzle in that there Grauniad:
Here’s another numerical palindrome:
50, 20, 10, 01, 02, 05
It’s the pence value of the UK coins in circulation under a pound.
What is the highest value of UK coins you can have in your pocket without being able to exchange them exactly for a £10 note?
(This puzzle is filed under. ‘Not difficult but you’d be surprised at how many people get it wrong.’)
I don't get this. How could the answer possibly not be £9.99? But there must be something else cos that's just too obvious. Does he mean only using each value of coin once? Or what? It feels like there's some assumption that's so obvious he hasn't stated it but I'm missing it.

Monday puzzle in that there Grauniad:
Here’s another numerical palindrome:
50, 20, 10, 01, 02, 05
It’s the pence value of the UK coins in circulation under a pound.
What is the highest value of UK coins you can have in your pocket without being able to exchange them exactly for a £10 note?
(This puzzle is filed under. ‘Not difficult but you’d be surprised at how many people get it wrong.’)
I don't get this. How could the answer possibly not be £9.99? But there must be something else cos that's just too obvious. Does he mean only using each value of coin once? Or what? It feels like there's some assumption that's so obvious he hasn't stated it but I'm missing it.
Dunno what the actual answer is, but if you had a 19x50s and 3x20s then you'd have £10.10 which is more than £9.99.
<thinks>
Or 49x20s and 1x50 = £10.30

My interpretation is
What is the highest value of UK coins you can have in your pocket without being able to exchange some of them exactly for a £10 note?
If you had 49no 20pences and 1no 50pence, you'd have £10.30, but wouldn't be able to make £10. I think this is the solution.
See also: 43 Chicken McNuggets
Edit: crossposted with nicknack!

You could also add 5p and 2 x 2p to that and still not be able to make up £10, so £10.39

Good spot!

My interpretation is
What is the highest value of UK coins you can have in your pocket without being able to exchange some of them exactly for a £10 note?
If you had 49no 20pences and 1no 50pence, you'd have £10.30, but wouldn't be able to make £10. I think this is the solution.
Okay, that makes sense. And Nicknack's answer, which has the advantage of being almost palindromic.
See also: 43 Chicken McNuggets
What? ???

43 is the largest number of Chicken McNuggets which couldn't be made using the standard sized packs (6, 9, 20).

43 is the largest number of Chicken McNuggets which couldn't be made using the standard sized packs (6, 9, 20).
This is why McDonalds have their own university!

43 is the largest number of Chicken McNuggets which couldn't be made using the standard sized packs (6, 9, 20).
This reminds me of a rather neat problem I recall from my primary school teaching days.
A 40kg weight drops on the floor and breaks into 4 pieces. It so happens that the pieces are precisely the correct mass to allow any number of whole kilograms from 1 to 40 to be weighed on a balance. What is the mass of each of the 4 pieces?

You could also add 5p and 2 x 2p to that and still not be able to make up £10, so £10.39
Can't you have 4×2p, making £10.43?
Sent from my moto x4 using Tapatalk

You could also add 5p and 2 x 2p to that and still not be able to make up £10, so £10.39
Can't you have 4×2p, making £10.43?
Sent from my moto x4 using Tapatalk
Indeed you can, the answer is £10.43
Sent from my moto x4 using Tapatalk

43 is the largest number of Chicken McNuggets which couldn't be made using the standard sized packs (6, 9, 20).
This reminds me of a rather neat problem I recall from my primary school teaching days.
A 40kg weight drops on the floor and breaks into 4 pieces. It so happens that the pieces are precisely the correct mass to allow any number of whole kilograms from 1 to 40 to be weighed on a balance. What is the mass of each of the 4 pieces?
I've been chewing this over while fooling up and down the motorways of this fair land.
A series of (2^n)1 sort of works, in that, for example pieces with masses of 1,3 , 7 and 15 kg allow you to get any of 1 to 26kg (I think). However it fails on the totalling 40kg front.

'Reduces the temperature by 20%' using deg. F  that could get tricky. OK if R or K used.

43 is the largest number of Chicken McNuggets which couldn't be made using the standard sized packs (6, 9, 20).
This reminds me of a rather neat problem I recall from my primary school teaching days.
A 40kg weight drops on the floor and breaks into 4 pieces. It so happens that the pieces are precisely the correct mass to allow any number of whole kilograms from 1 to 40 to be weighed on a balance. What is the mass of each of the 4 pieces?
I've been chewing this over while fooling up and down the motorways of this fair land.
A series of (2^n)1 sort of works, in that, for example pieces with masses of 1,3 , 7 and 15 kg allow you to get any of 1 to 26kg (I think). However it fails on the totalling 40kg front.
1 & 3 are correct. However, 7 is unnecessarily small as it allows 2 ways of reaching 4 (3+1 and 73)...

It's 3^n.
1, 3, 9, 27 work.

It's not really 'arithmetic that makes you cringe' but this is a nice problem nonetheless...
There are 1000 numbered lockers in a line. All of them are closed.
First, you pass along the line, changing the door position (i.e. opening!) every door.
Then, you go back to the start, changing the door position (i.e. closing) every evennumbered door.
Then you go back to the start, changing the door position of every third door (i.e. closing door 3, opening door 6, closing door 9...).
Then you go back to the start, changing the door position of every fourth door.
Then every fifth door.
...
... Lastly, change the door position of door 1000.
How many doors are open, and how many are closed?

It's 3^n.
1, 3, 9, 27 work.
Correct!

How many doors are open, and how many are closed?
Ah yes, I remember this one.

Yes, of course. They are the only numbers that have an odd number of factors.

It's not really 'arithmetic that makes you cringe' but this is a nice problem nonetheless...
There are 1000 numbered lockers in a line. All of them are closed.
First, you pass along the line, changing the door position (i.e. opening!) every door.
Then, you go back to the start, changing the door position (i.e. closing) every evennumbered door.
Then you go back to the start, changing the door position of every third door (i.e. closing door 3, opening door 6, closing door 9...).
Then you go back to the start, changing the door position of every fourth door.
Then every fifth door.
...
... Lastly, change the door position of door 1000.
How many doors are open, and how many are closed?
These lockers. Are they in the cloakroom at Hilbert's hotel?

Hehe!
Another lovely problem:
A man is in a rowing boat in the middle of a pond. He takes a large rock from the bottom of the boat and drops it into the water, whereupon it sinks. What happens to the level of the water in the pond?

Same volume of water displaced whether the rock is on the bottom or in the boat, so no change?

Surely the displacement required to support the rock is greater than the volume of the rock, as it's more dense than water. On that basis, the water level goes down?

That looks MUCH better!

Kim has it. It's a little counterintuitive!

Thanks, Legs. Yes, a lovely problem.
Brain now updated (I hope).

This image of Gerald Corrigan's house shows where North Wales Police believe the shooter was located (https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/ukwales51360832)
(https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/news/624/cpsprodpb/D2B3/production/_110693935_crossbow.png)
A triumph of precision over accuracy.

I was expecting that would convert to a nice round number of feet or yards. But it doesn't.
That's the usual reason for decimals of that precision in press reports.
So, we can expect a cow to be arrested some time soon.

This image of Gerald Corrigan's house shows where North Wales Police believe the shooter was located (https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/ukwales51360832)
(https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/news/624/cpsprodpb/D2B3/production/_110693935_crossbow.png)
A triumph of precision over accuracy.
[/quote
Was that the case of the bloke who got shot by someone with a crossbow?

Hehe!
Another lovely problem:
A man is in a rowing boat in the middle of a pond. He takes a large rock from the bottom of the boat and drops it into the water, whereupon it sinks. What happens to the level of the water in the pond?
The large rock penetrates the pond lining and completely empties it of water, leaving the man and boat on a muddy slimy bottom.

^^^^^^^^^ I was asked that question in interview with Vosper Thorneycroft back when the world was young (about 1987). The difference was that it was a large ship, a very small very heavy weight, and a dockyard basin. A question in logical thinking. They are probably not allowed to ask things like that these days.

Surely the displacement required to support the rock is greater than the volume of the rock, as it's more dense than water. On that basis, the water level goes down?
Your right I think. The size of the rock is immaterial to the displacement needed by the boat to support but it its weight is. An empty steel box 1m3 would displace much less than a box the same size filled with something really dense like lead or gold. Drop them in the water and they both displace 1m3 of water no matter what their weight is. When its on the boat its a weight problem when its in the water its a volume problem.

The redundancy of 'x by x square'.

Hmm...
The existing major satellite navigational systems all use satellites orbiting about 20km from the Earth’s surface, compared with only 1.2km for lowEarth orbits.
https://www.theguardian.com/business/2020/jul/03/ukbuysstakebankruptonewebsatelliterivaleugalileosystem

Hmm...
The existing major satellite navigational systems all use satellites orbiting about 20km from the Earth’s surface, compared with only 1.2km for lowEarth orbits.
https://www.theguardian.com/business/2020/jul/03/ukbuysstakebankruptonewebsatelliterivaleugalileosystem
Chortle! I am now trying to picture satellites passing a thousand feet beneath Denver.
Edit: They've fixed it :(

Hmm...
The existing major satellite navigational systems all use satellites orbiting about 20km from the Earth’s surface, compared with only 1.2km for lowEarth orbits.
https://www.theguardian.com/business/2020/jul/03/ukbuysstakebankruptonewebsatelliterivaleugalileosystem
Chortle! I am now trying to picture satellites passing a thousand feet beneath Denver.
That's what the ultraSEEKRIT tunnels under Denver are for (the tunnels under the airport that we do know about were built as a distraction). :demon: ;) :demon:
Edit: They've fixed it :(
Spoilsports. ::)

Hehe!
Another lovely problem:
A man is in a rowing boat in the middle of a pond. He takes a large rock from the bottom of the boat and drops it into the water, whereupon it sinks. What happens to the level of the water in the pond?
The large rock penetrates the pond lining and completely empties it of water, leaving the man and boat on a muddy slimy bottom.
In the last day or so our pond's water level started to drop consistently. We'd fill it up; hours later the level dropped.
We supposed there was a sudden leak  I'd been doing heavy gardening one side of it but I couldn't imagine how that would have damaged the lining.
Then I remembered we'd once had a fountain and the pipe was still there. Yup, the gardening had displaced the loose pipe and it had started to syphon out the water. I could put away the bicycle tyre repair kit. No arithmetic I'm afraid.

Failing to understand the difference between m^{2} and meters square
https://www.ice.org.uk/whatiscivilengineering/whatdocivilengineersdo/postofficetower (https://www.ice.org.uk/whatiscivilengineering/whatdocivilengineersdo/postofficetower)
The project team sank a concrete raft about 8m into the ground to deal with this. The 27m² raft was 1m thick and reinforced with 6 layers of cables.

Yes.
And, is m^{2} better read as "square metres", "square metre", "metres squared", or "metre squared"?