USERBOXES FOREVEH !
I very much welcome comments on any of my contributions (naming, format, style, contents, usefulness etc etc) - post a message at User_talk:Gandalf61.
As for myself ... I am British so I enjoy :
- The outstanding comedy of Monty Python and Fawlty Towers
- The animation of Nick Park
- Singing along with Flanders & Swann
- Eating Marmite on toast
- Drinking dandelion and burdock and warm beer (but not both at the same time)
- ... and playing Diplomacy, Risk and, of course, Mornington Crescent
Articles that I have started or made a substantial contribution to include :
- Abstract structure - a gap that needed filling because there was a link to it from the mathematics page
- Proof by exhaustion - an important method of mathematical proof that has some controversial applications
- Constructive proof - a complement to the nonconstructive proof article, and completes a link from mathematical proof
- Generating function - replaced a redirect to formal power series with an article on different types of generating functions and their uses
- Farey sequence - just couldn't resist filling out the previous stub
- Ford circle - a natural link from Farey sequence
- Kepler conjecture - a fascinating problem, and an example of proof by exhaustion
- Sphere packing - a requested article that provides context for the Kepler conjecture
- Mathematics as a language - completes a link from mathematical proof
- Flanders and Swann - expanded previous stub
- Polydivisible number - an intriguing backwater in recreational mathematics
- Octave Chanute - American railroad engineer and aviation pioneer
- Coniston Water - scene of Donald Campbell's death in 1967
- Abstraction (mathematics) - link from abstract structure
- Riemann hypothesis - added history section
- St. Elsewhere - new article
- Modular group - expanded existing article
- Fractal - added history section
- Birch and Swinnerton-Dyer conjecture - added background section and expanded rest of article
- Julia set - amended general definition of Julia set
- Fatou set - new article, link from Julia set
- Lucas sequence - new article, link from Fibonacci pseudoprime
- Disquisitiones Arithmeticae - new article, link from Carl Friedrich Gauss and number theory
- Vorlesungen über Zahlentheorie - new article, link from number theory
- Mathematical beauty - re-write of existing article
- Mathematics and art - split out from mathematical beauty
- How Long Is the Coast of Britain? Statistical Self-Similarity and Fractional Dimension - new article, link from fractal
- Voronoi diagram - added history section
- Project Excelsior - new article, link from Joseph Kittinger
- Pendine Sands - new article, written because I went there on holiday
- K'nex - expanded previous stub
- Rare Earth hypothesis - made existing article less rhetorical, more NPOV
- Evolving the Alien: The Science of Extraterrestrial Life - new article, book by Jack Cohen and Ian Stewart
- Moving average (finance) - a family of common technical analysis techniques that deserved their own article
- Lyapunov fractal - expanded previous stub
- Apollonian gasket - new article on a very beautiful fractal
- Benoît Mandelbrot - expanded existing article
- Lévy C curve - new article, link from fractal
- Lévy flight - expanded previous stub
- Lévy's constant - new article
- Paul Pierre Lévy - expanded previous stub
- Ruth Lawrence - expanded previous stub
- Notes & Queries - new article celebrating 15th anniversary of column in The Guardian
- Zeckendorf's theorem - new article, referenced in Fibonacci number
- Edouard Zeckendorf - new article
- Mathematics education - re-wrote and expanded previous stub
- A Mathematician's Apology - expanded previous stub
- Hans von Mangoldt - new article
- von Mangoldt function - example of an arithmetic function that is neither multiplicative nor additive
- Padovan sequence - new article
- Plastic number - re-wrote previous stub
- Dyadic transformation - re-wrote previous stub
- Tent map - expanded and re-wrote previous stub. Tent map exhibits a wide range of dynamic behaviours in a fairly simple context.
- Poincaré-Bendixson theorem - new article
- List of Cambridge mathematicians - extended previous stub list
- Carmichael's theorem - replaced redirect
- Midy's theorem - new article
- p-adic number - re-wrote Introduction section and added references
- trimorphic number - new article, extends concept of automorphic number
- henagon and digon - expanded previous stubs
- ideal triangle - new article, linked from hyperbolic triangle
- A. Cohn's irreducibility criterion - expanded previous stub
- Anderton Boat Lift - expanded previous stub; added diagrams
- Regular Polytopes (book) - new article
- Indra's Pearls (book) - new article
- Graphical timeline of the Big Bang - made timeline consistent with times given in the individual early universe epoch articles, and wrote new article on the quark epoch
- Multiplicative group of integers modulo n - added examples
- Eulerian number - replaced incorrect redirect with new article
- Peter Harrison Planetarium - expanded previous stub
- Hofstadter sequence - new article
- Integer relation algorithm - new article
- Euclid's orchard - new article
- Experimental mathematics - rewrote and expanded previous stub
- Encyclopedia of Triangle Centers - new article
- Coxeter's loxodromic sequence of tangent circles - new article
- Cocker's Arithmetick - new article
- Superperfect number - new article
- Timeline of the future in forecasts - expanded and improved article when nominated for deletion
- 65536 (number) - expanded and improved article when nominated for deletion
- Lochs' theorem - new article
- Juggler sequence - new article
- From Here to Infinity (book) - new article, because I was re-reading it and noticed we did not have an article
- Jeep problem - expanded stub
- Baum-Sweet sequence - new article
- Rudin-Shapiro sequence - new article
- Regular paperfolding sequence - new article
- Fermat quotient - new article
- Locally catenative sequence - new article, linked from L-system
- Church of Saint Leonard, Bengeo - expanded, added more images
- Final stellation of the icosahedron - brought to good article standard
- Penrose tiling - brought to good article standard
- The Quantum Universe - new article
- Monsky's theorem - new article
Things I Have Learned From Wikipedia
To help me remember why I contribute to Wikipedia, this is a list (in no particular order) of things that I did not know until I read about them here.
- A concrete canoe can resurface even after it is submerged.
- The unknown soldier is not always unknown.
- The Perpetual virginity of Mary is a doctrine of the Catholic Church.
- The 3D equivalent of a Koch snowflake fills a cube.
- Pica is a unit of measure in typography; the genus of the magpie; and the medical term for an appetite for non-foods.
- An unpopped popcorn kernel is known as an "old maid".
- The M96 motorway is not open to the public, but has appeared in a television documentary.
- The Triangulum Galaxy is probably the furtherest object visible with the naked eye. It is about 400,000 light years further away than the Andromeda Galaxy.
- A square wheel can give a smooth ride on a bumpy road.
- Bram Stoker, author of Dracula, read mathematics at Trinity College, Dublin, and graduated with honours.
- The gravitational sphere of influence of one body that is in orbit around another larger body is known as its Hill sphere.
- In addition to Charon, Pluto has at least four other moons (Nix, Hydra, Kerberos and Styx).
- A crime commited by an astronaut on the International Space Station would fall under the jurisdiction of the home country of the alleged perpetrator.
- Salvador Dali's last painting, The Swallow's Tail, is about catastrophe theory.
- The Danjon scale is used to measure the visbility of the Moon during a total lunar eclipse.
- In medieval Europe, the barnacle goose was believed to be born from a barnacle. This allowed Catholics to eat it during Lent, as it was classified as a fish.
- Ingesting silver or silver compounds can turn your skin blue - a condition known as argyria.
- Mountbatten pink, used as naval camouflage paint by Louis Mountbatten in World War II, is a mixture of medium gray with a small amount of Venetian red.
- The inventor of mass-produced instant coffee was called George Washington.
- Harriet Quimby, the first woman to earn a US pilot's certificate, became the first woman to fly across the English Channel less than a year later.
- A desire line is a path created by people repeatedly taking the same route across an open space such as a field or lawn.
- Bulwarks built around the piers of a bridge to ease the flow of water and reduce erosion are called starlings.
- Bismuth and silicon each has the unusual property that its liquid phase is denser than its solid phase (like water).
- Keraunomedicine is the medical study of lightning casualties; keraunos is Greek for "thunder" or "thunderbolt".
- In her 2005 album Aerial, Kate Bush sings the first 137 digits of the decimal expansion of π (omitting digits 79 to 100).
- The study of flags is called vexillology, from vexillum, a type of flag carried by Roman legions.
- Despite having a very similar diet to cows, kangaroos produce virtually no methane from digestion.
- Cummingtonite, named after Cummington, Massachusetts, is a mineral composed of magnesium iron silicate hydroxide.
- The Boomerang Nebula has a temperature of 1K (i.e. colder than the CMB) and is the coldest known natural environment.
- September 19th is International Talk Like a Pirate Day.
- Bicycle Day (April 19th, 1943) is the day when Dr Albert Hofmann first intentionally ingested LSD in a self-experiment.
- The Toast of Botswana is a naturally-occuring sheep-goat hybrid.
- In American slang, "going postal" means "to suddenly become extremely and uncontrollably angry, possibly to the point of violence".
- Charles Osborne hiccupped continuously for 68 years, from 1922 to 1990.
- The Feynman Point is the sequence of six 9s which begins at the 762nd decimal place of π.
- Stigler's law of eponymy states that "No scientific discovery is named after its original discoverer". Stephen Stigler first published the law, but attributed its discovery to Robert K. Merton.
- The highest unclimbed mountain in the world is Gangkhar Puensum in Bhutan. At present, mountaineering is prohibited in Bhutan.
- In 1907 Dr. Duncan MacDougall weighed six of his patients while they were dying in order to determine the weight of the human soul, which he estimated to be 21 grams.
- A spite house is an American term for an often impractical building constructed to annoy or aggravate the owner of a neighbouring property.
- February had 30 days in 1712 in Sweden, when two leap days were introduced to re-align the Swedish calendar with the Julian calendar. Sweden did not adopt the Gregorian calendar until 1753.
- Exoteric is the opposite of esoteric - so public or common knowledge is exoteric knowledge.
- The word coach comes from the Hungarian village of Kocs, where steel-sprung horse-drawn carriages were first built in the 15th century.
- A trompe is a water-powered air compressor commonly used before electric-powered compressors became available.
- Dr. William Moulton Marston, inventor of the polygraph, also created Wonder Woman.
- Velology is the study and collection of vehicle licence discs.
- The Kingdom of Lovely is a partly Internet-based micronation founded by comedy writer Danny Wallace.
- The cubewano 58534 Logos has a satellite called Zoe, which is the only non-asteroid body in the Solar System whose name begins with the letter Z.
- A cephalophore (from the Greek for "head-carrier") is a saint depicted carrying their head in their hands, signifying that they were martyred by beheading.
- At its peak, Walt Disney World Resort, Florida, occupied a larger area than Paris - 120 km2 v. 105 km2.
- A cordwainer makes shoes - a cobbler, strictly speaking, only mends shoes.
- The place on Earth farthest from the Earth's centre is the summit of Chimborazo (or possibly the summit of Huascarán).
- The "paragraph sign" ¶ is more formally called a pilcrow; the "division sign" ÷ is more formally called a obelus, which has the same Greek root as obelisk.
- Writer Roald Dahl was named after polar explorer Roald Amundsen by his Norwegian parents.
- According to John Lennon, the title of Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds came from a drawing made by Lennon's young son Julian of his nursery school classmate Lucy Vodden.
- March 0 is the last day of February.
- Truck nuts are a uniquely American vehicle accessory.
- Lobster Thermidor is named after the 11th month of the French Republican Calendar.
- Shells fired by the Paris Gun in 1918 were the first man-made objects to enter the stratosphere.
- Borborygmus is the medical term for stomach rumbling.
- Troll and Tor are Norwegian Polar Institute research stations in Antarctica.
- The Stout Scarab is an innovative US automobile manufactured in small numbers in the 1930s and considered by some to be the world's first production minivan.
- St Piran's Day is the national day of Cornwall.
- Anastrophe the natural word order inverts, a sentence more interesting to make.
- Molinology is the study of miils and other water or wind powered mechanisms.
- Tillamook Cheddar was an American canine artist named after a cheese.
- The Local Bubble may have been blown by Geminga.
- Petrichor (from the Greek petra + ichor) is the scientific term for the scent of rain on dry earth.
- A rastrum is a five-pointed pen used to draw musical staves.
- A hail cannon is an unlikely device that is supposed to prevent the formation of hailstones.
- Before the publication of Charlotte Brontë's novel in 1849, Shirley was an uncommon - but distinctly male - name and would have been an unusual name for a woman.
- There are two Floozies in the Jacuzzi; one in Birmingham, and one in Dublin.
- Starbucks coffehouse chain was named after the first mate of the Pequod in Melville's Moby-Dick.
- Philip K. Dick's middle name was Kindred.
- A cinderella stamp is virtually anything resembling a postage stamp, but not issued for postal purposes by a government postal administration.
- Mavis is a dialect name for the song thrush, but was first used as a woman's name in the 1895 novel The Sorrows of Satan.
- The Kirkwood gaps are caused by Jupiter.
- In meteorology virga (Latin: twig or branch) is precipitation that falls from a cloud but evaporates or sublimates before reaching the ground.
- The Sacred Cod and the Holy Mackerel hang in the Massachusetts State House in Boston.
- The notion that duct tape was originally "duck tape" made from cotton duck is probably an urban myth.
- Ground rollers are a small family of non-migratory near-passerine birds restricted to Madagascar.
- A hypernucleus contains at least one hyperon (a baryon carrying the strangeness quantum number) in addition to protons and neutrons.
- "In like Flynn" is a slang phrase meaning "having quickly or easily achieved a goal". The eponymous Flynn may be actor Errol Flynn or American politician Edward J. Flynn.
- Goldfish swallowing was a fad in American colleges in the 1930s.
- Mount St. Helens was named after Alleyne FitzHerbert, 1st Baron St Helens. The title was named after the village of St Helens on the Ise of Wight.
- Soylent is an off-white powder - and definitely not green.
- Jimi Heselden, British millionaire and owner of Segway Inc., died as a result of falling off cliff while riding a Segway.
- Ovaltine was originally called Ovomaltine but its name was shortened due to a misspelling in its British trademark application.
- Dogfooding - when a company uses its own products in order to test them in real-life scenarios.
|The Working Man's Barnstar|
|For your tireless and helpful work in the Reference desks. Jones2 10:55, 31 December 2006 (UTC)|
|The Reference Desk Barnstar|
|Thank you for your reply to my query at the Science Reference Desk regarding the History of Quantum Mechanics. Your contribution to the discussion was insightful, and helped me find the answers I was looking for. Thanks! FusionKnight (talk) 19:46, 22 January 2008 (UTC)|
|The E=mc² Barnstar|
|I make it a habit to scroll through RD/MA every once in a while, and I've seen you offer intelligent insight on multiple occasions. Hence, a barnstar. :) —Anonymous DissidentTalk 11:46, 6 February 2009 (UTC)|
|The Random Acts of Kindness Barnstar|
|Dear Gandalf61, thank you for the kindness that you've shown towards me. I do not believe that we've ever interacted on Wikipedia before but nevertheless, you stood up for me. I really appreciate this act of charity and hope that God will bless you and your family in abundance. The image in this barnstar has a smile in it, which you brought to my face today. I hope that this barnstar will do the same to you. Your new friend, AnupamTalk 03:41, 2 May 2012 (UTC)|