[WiZ] That's Numberwrong!

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[WiZ] That's Numberwrong!

Postby WiZ » Thu Sep 26, 2019 8:31 pm

I used to work for the Department of Statistics, which had its own dedicated building. Every morning, on the way to my desk, I would walk past a number that was prominently (and immovably) displayed. The number was clearly and obviously incorrect. Why would a department devoted to numerical accuracy do such a thing?

True story. No specialised knowledge of New Zealand or Statistics required. No caveat.
Last edited by WiZ on Tue Oct 01, 2019 7:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: [WiZ] That's Numberwrong!

Postby Zanreo » Fri Sep 27, 2019 12:11 am

Would most people seeing it know/realize it was wrong? Was it symbolic in some way? Rounded up/down? Was the number: the amount of a certain object? Times something happened? Related to money? A year?

Did it have more than one digit? More than 5? 10?
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Re: [WiZ] That's Numberwrong!

Postby WiZ » Fri Sep 27, 2019 12:17 am

Would most people seeing it know/realize it was wrong? yes Was it symbolic in some way? no Rounded up/down? no Was the number: the amount of a certain object? Times something happened? Related to money? A year? no to all

Did it have more than one digit? yope! More than 5? 10? no to both
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Re: [WiZ] That's Numberwrong!

Postby GalFisk » Fri Sep 27, 2019 7:03 am

Is it humorous? Does it have a letter? Symbol? Digit displayed the wrong way around? 8 tipped over to make ∞?
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Re: [WiZ] That's Numberwrong!

Postby Earnest » Fri Sep 27, 2019 12:37 pm

Ok so first of all...have you studied statistics and or Machine Learning? Me toooooooo
To be sure: is the number a normal nu.ber? A roman number? A number in other charachrers?

Ok...having said so. Is the number: a time? A date? Temperature? Weight? Measurament from a biased tool (so that it is always biased and hence wrong)? The number of times something happens? The number of employees? A number displaying the result of a mathematical operation? A number that shows a mutable event (e.g. number of employees or age of the elder employee which changes over time)? Is the number updated from time to time? An age? An address? Is the number part of a sequence of numbers? Standing alone? Is it voluntarily wrong? In order for it to be noticed? By people working in the Department? By customers? Other employees? Is the number displayed alone? With relevant words?

Is it always wrong? Is it always the same number? Can it be right under some circumatances? Was the number displayed always? Just in the morning? Are there times/days in which the number is not diplayed? Is it displayed on a screen? On paper? Are paradoxes relevant? Is the number an integer? A number with decimals? An approximation (hence never correct)? (E.g. periodic numbers)
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Re: [WiZ] That's Numberwrong!

Postby invisiblemimsy » Fri Sep 27, 2019 2:45 pm

Was it in binary or any other base than 10? Was it in standard Arabic numerals?
Yopishly more than one digit... Does it just have one digit? A symbol depicting a digit such as pi or ∞ ? Was the number, or the display of such, an in-joke? An error? A holding number?
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Re: [WiZ] That's Numberwrong!

Postby Balin » Sat Sep 28, 2019 9:04 pm

Is the number an integer? A decimal? A fraction? A mixed number?
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Re: [WiZ] That's Numberwrong!

Postby WiZ » Sun Sep 29, 2019 8:43 pm

GalFisk

Is it humorous? no Does it have a letter? yope! Symbol? yope! Digit displayed the wrong way around? yes! 8 tipped over to make ∞? no

Earnest

Ok so first of all...have you studied statistics and or Machine Learning? I mainly studied the social sciences (and law), but there were components of statistics. I worked as a demographer, although spent some time on Time Use and the CPI Me toooooooo
To be sure: is the number a normal nu.ber? see next A roman number? yes! A number in other charachrers? see previous

Ok...having said so. Is the number: a time? A date? Temperature? Weight? Measurament from a biased tool (so that it is always biased and hence wrong)? The number of times something happens? The number of employees? A number displaying the result of a mathematical operation? A number that shows a mutable event (e.g. number of employees or age of the elder employee which changes over time)? no to all :P Is the number updated from time to time? no An age? no An address? yope Is the number part of a sequence of numbers? yes Standing alone? at face value, yes Is it voluntarily wrong? no In order for it to be noticed? no By people working in the Department? By customers? Other employees? n/a to all Is the number displayed alone? yes With relevant words? no

Is it always wrong? Is it always the same number? yes to both Can it be right under some circumatances? no Was the number displayed always? yes Just in the morning? Are there times/days in which the number is not diplayed? no to both Is it displayed on a screen? On paper? no to both Are paradoxes relevant? no Is the number an integer? Yes, inasmuch as it's not a fraction or irrational number A number with decimals? no An approximation (hence never correct)? (E.g. periodic numbers) no

InvisibleMimsy

Was it in binary or any other base than 10? no Was it in standard Arabic numerals? no
Yopishly more than one digit... Does it just have one digit? yope A symbol depicting a digit such as pi or ∞ ? no Was the number, or the display of such, an in-joke? no An error? yope A holding number? no

Balin

Is the number an integer? yes A decimal? A fraction? A mixed number? no to rest
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Re: [WiZ] That's Numberwrong!

Postby Earnest » Mon Sep 30, 2019 7:25 am

Does the number indicate the number of a corridor? Of a department? Of a street? Clock numbers? Others? Is the roman number mixed with modern math symbols (E.g.: " . , ! - + x : ^ ", square_root, integral , others?)...e.g. capital i written as ! ? Maybe is a pun with the roman number relevant? (a number that is written the wrong way in order to form a meaningful word?) Or maybe the roman number was a sub-specification of an Arabic number repeated many times (e.g. department 3 had 4 corridors: I, II, III, IV)?

Relevant roman letters: X, M, L, I, V, D, C others? I know that I can be both before and after letters but that for instance IIII is wrong. Is it something like that? (e.g. VIIII to display IX?); M written as W? The other way round means that had letters/symbols been inverted/interpreted from right to left, the number would have been correct?
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Re: [WiZ] That's Numberwrong!

Postby WiZ » Mon Sep 30, 2019 9:46 pm

Does the number indicate the number of a corridor? No but ORT Of a department? Of a street? Clock numbers? no to these
Others? Is the roman number mixed with modern math symbols (E.g.: " . , ! - + x : ^ ", square_root, integral , others?)...e.g. capital i written as ! ? no Maybe is a pun with the roman number relevant? no (a number that is written the wrong way in order to form a meaningful word?) Or maybe the roman number was a sub-specification of an Arabic number repeated many times (e.g. department 3 had 4 corridors: I, II, III, IV)? no

Relevant roman letters: X, M, L, I, V, D, C others? I and V I know that I can be both before and after letters but that for instance IIII is wrong. This is correct. IIII was displayed. Why?

Is it something like that? (e.g. VIIII to display IX?); M written as W? The other way round means that had letters/symbols been inverted/interpreted from right to left, the number would have been correct? This is a relevant consideration.
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Re: [WiZ] That's Numberwrong!

Postby Earnest » Tue Oct 01, 2019 3:44 am

So 4 in roman letters is IV and is read from right to left being 5 -1. Hence maybe the motivation for writing it like IIII is not to confound it with something else? Would someone read it from left to right? Or maybe it was displayed on a glass thing so that it could have been confounded with a VI had it been read from the wrong side?
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Re: [WiZ] That's Numberwrong!

Postby WiZ » Tue Oct 01, 2019 7:31 pm

So 4 in roman letters is IV and is read from right to left being 5 -1. Hence maybe the motivation for writing it like IIII is not to confound it with something else? correct Would someone read it from left to right? Not always! Or maybe it was displayed on a glass thing so that it could have been confounded with a VI had it been read from the wrong side? yes!

***** SPOILER *****

The building was almost entirely glass, and the floors were accessed through a glass-walled stairwell. The number of each floor was written in Roman Numerals, but the fourth floor used the nonexistant numeral IIII to depict it, as IV would be read as VI by anyone on the other side of the stairwell.


Congratulations, Earnest on the solution (It takes a Roman to work out Roman numerals, it seems) and thank you everyone for playing!
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Re: [WiZ] That's Numberwrong! [NOW IT CLIX]

Postby Earnest » Wed Oct 02, 2019 5:02 am

Well my ancestors guided me hahaha
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Re: [WiZ] That's Numberwrong! [NOW IT CLIX]

Postby biograd » Fri Oct 04, 2019 5:09 am

So I guess there was no sixth floor? Or was something else unusual used for that?
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Re: [WiZ] That's Numberwrong! [NOW IT CLIX]

Postby WiZ » Wed Oct 09, 2019 8:20 pm

Oops, noticed your message a little late, Biograd.

There were only 6 floors in the building, with the lowest floor being '0'. I suspect if they had to do the numeral thing twice, they'd just have said 'sod it' and gone with Arabic numerals.
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