What common people think mathematicians do


5 Responses to What common people think mathematicians do

  1. Chang Yang says:

    I am far from being a mathematician, but I do get mathematical dreams. In fact I get mathematical nightmares. Most often it takes this form: I am at one side of lever and I represent a pretty small power of two, 2^3, 2^5 or something. On the other side of the lever there is a ginormous power of 2, some 2^100 or something, a number that I could never match in any way. I will get this overwhelming pressure in my mind, I try to escape but I can’t. Then I will struggle, and I wake up with a terror.

    Weird I know. But it happens to me. The same dream, once every few months.

  2. suhaimiramly says:

    well i’ve never had a mathematical dream before though I have talked to people who dreams about geometrical figures and sequences of numbers.

    but i used to dream about two things:
    1. i used to play chess seriously when i was in Form 2, and i used to dream about chess positions and was able to play a whole game in one dream. usually the game contained some dreamlike sequences like the knight turning into a unicorn and stabbed the pawn using its facial horn (ala Battle Chess). i stopped playing chess seriously when in Form 4 and the dreams also stopped. right now i dont play chess anymore; the last time i played a game was three years ago, vs Zhi Kin during IMO in Hanoi. needless to say i got trounced.

    2. when i used to play scrabble competitively (in Boston clubs and tournament) i often dreamed about scrabble tiles floating in the air forming 7- and 8- letter words (i used to memorize wordlists).

    one dream i still remember goes like this: there were seven Scrabble tiles spelling “H-I-R-S-U-T-E” hiking on the Alps, bouncing happily like they are von trapp kids or something, until they passed a hollywood-style sign on the side of the mountain spelling A-L-P-S.

    when i woke up, i checked my LeXpert (a word study software) and found out that HIRSUTE forms an 8-letter word with exactly four other letters: A, L, P, and S!


    Quite freaky. there were a few others but i couldnt remember them anymore (havent touched a scrabble board in 4 years).

    i think our dreams reflect our subconscious thoughts.

  3. suhaimiramly says:

    for young people who dont know what Battle Chess is

  4. Chang Yang says:

    Whah your brain actually went on AUTO mode when you were dreaming. Freaky indeed.

  5. samah says:

    same goes for programming (more like figuring out a bug)

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