Make your own free website on

Page: 2

     A quiet little man was brought before a judge. The judge looked down at the man and then at the charges and then down at the little man in amazement. "Can you tell me in your own words what happened?" he asked the man.

"I'm a mathematical logician dealing in the nature of proof."


"Yes, go on," said the astounded judge.

     "Well, I was at the library and I found the books I wanted and went to take them out. They told me my library card had expired and I had to get a new one. So I went to the registration office and got in another line. And filled out my forms for another card. And got back in line for my card."

"And?" said the judge.

"And he asked 'Can you prove you are from New York City?' ...So I stabbed him."

Taken from: David Shay's page

The Dictionary: what mathematics professors say and what they mean by it

Clearly: I don't want to write down all the "in-between" steps.
Trivial: If I have to show you how to do this, you're in the wrong class.
It can easily be shown: No more than four hours are needed to prove it.
Check for yourself: This is the boring part of the proof, so you can do it on your own time.
Hint: The hardest of several possible ways to do a proof.
Brute force: Four special cases, three counting arguments and two long inductions.
Elegant proof: Requires no previous knowledge of the subject matter and is less than ten lines long.
Similarly: At least one line of the proof of this case is the same as before.
Two line proof: I'll leave out everything but the conclusion, you can't question 'em if you can't see 'em.
Briefly: I'm running out of time, so I'll just write and talk faster.
Proceed formally: Manipulate symbols by the rules without any hint of their true meaning.
Proof omitted: Trust me, It's true.

Taken from: David Shay's page

Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3   |   Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8   |  Page 9

Previous Page Next Page