## 0605: "Extrapolating"

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Aeetlrcreejl
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### 0605: "Extrapolating"

Alt-text: By the third trimester, there will be hundreds of babies inside you.

glasnt
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

Statistical anomalies don't make for good extrapolations. *humpfh*

Hi joee.

'; DROP DATABASE;--
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

A good example of why extrapolation is not always reliable. Also funny.
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ryannayr417
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

I like the contemplative look the bride has in this comic.

TheHomoSapiens
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

I hate when unrealistic stats are given for thhings that will never happen that many times.

Eternal Density
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

thanks Randall, I really needed those laughs

Hmm, but why a straight line? It could be a sine wave, or exponential...

*considers the extrapolation involved in radiometric dating, which has a tendency to fail on rocks of known age*
remember kids, radiometric dating is Blind Dating!
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Whyareall
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

I concede defeat. I was so close though! And i think that my little bit added on at the end was better ("Also, if you increase ice cream sales, sharks will attack")
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lingomaniac88
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

Reminds me of what Steven Wright once said:

When I turned two I was really anxious, because I'd doubled my age in a year. I thought, if this keeps up, by the time I'm six I'll be ninety.
"It is common sense to take a method and try it. If it fails, admit it frankly and try another. But above all, try something."
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Omegaton
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

Man, you know how they sometimes have comic strips in textbooks? This would definitely be appropriate in a math text, because it's so true.

The alt-text really got me on this one, though, hilarious!

Excalibur0998
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

Eternal Density wrote:thanks Randall, I really needed those laughs

Hmm, but why a straight line? It could be a sine wave, or exponential...

*considers the extrapolation involved in radiometric dating, which has a tendency to fail on rocks of known age*
remember kids, radiometric dating is Blind Dating!

Seeing how polygamy is a big no-no, I would say it would resemble sine squared. Continuously oscillates between 1 and 0...

I thought about saying just sine but the prospect of negative husbands is intriguing to say the least.

kaotik4266
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

I hope everyone will forgive me for this:

SHE'LL HAVE FOUR HUNDRED BABIES!!!!!!

Snowdream
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

Forwarded to many many Economics professors...

This comic is revenge for me and every one of those !#%\$ing graphs I had to draw.

SocialSceneRepairman
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

Okay, admit it, this one's just for us to hotlink the next time someone abuses statistics, isn't it?

Matthias
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

The natural response: Shick Singularity.
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Kleppner
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

Wait... how is babby formed?

Ekko
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

Imagine the panic when her "time of the month" comes* - there will only be more rage in the future!

*Admittedly, that might not be the best example - if she's pregnant, that won't happen for 9-10 months, so it wouldn't be as funny.**
**Actually, just forget I said anything. Damn it***, me!
***Apparently, "dammit" is more correct...

IW4
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

I'm (only) slightly ashamed to admit it, but when I read the alt text, all I heard was the voice of the Powerthirst announcer.

rubber314chicken
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

ryannayr417 wrote:I like the contemplative look the bride has in this comic.

I wonder if the guy in this sucks at cunnilingus or something.

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Eldred Jonas
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

All I can think of is Spiral Starecase.

I love you more today than yesterday
But not as much as tomorrow...

Salamnzer
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

very nice comic, sadly to say, it took me a while to get it (i didn't read the title)

ryannayr417 wrote:I like the contemplative look the bride has in this comic

Sir-Taco
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

kaotik4266 wrote:I hope everyone will forgive me for this:

SHE'LL HAVE FOUR HUNDRED BABIES!!!!!!

So these extrapolations must only apply if we drink powerthirst. So does that mean if I drink it, and then bench 100 pounds, by the end of this month... my God...
The world is a cold and dark place, so start fire.

sq_ocelot
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

I got my first good chuckle from xkcd in a while thanks to this one, especially the alt-text. Then a second wave of chuckles hit me. I approve.

Wait...if I didn't laugh at all because of xkcd yesterday, and I laughed twice today, in a short while I'm be doing nothing but laughing. Extrapolation, man.
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aoanla
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

Excalibur0998 wrote:
Eternal Density wrote:thanks Randall, I really needed those laughs

Hmm, but why a straight line? It could be a sine wave, or exponential...

*considers the extrapolation involved in radiometric dating, which has a tendency to fail on rocks of known age*
remember kids, radiometric dating is Blind Dating!

Seeing how polygamy is a big no-no, I would say it would resemble sine squared.

ITYM Polyandry, more pointedly, since polygyny actually does happen with measurable numbers of people.
(Although, IIRC, Polyandry happens in some remote Tibetan villages...)

The problem with these stick figures is that you can't begin guessing what country they're in for an approximation of local laws.

noname
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

I snorted

Ronfar
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

Obviously, the problem is that the extrapolation has left out many data points: all the between yesterday and the bride's date of birth in which the bride also had zero husbands. After a number of years equal to her current age, she'll have husband number #2.
- Doug

DSDM
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

But on the plus side, that's four dozen blowjobs she'll never have to give again.

Ekeda
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

As funny as this one is, I have a feeling xkcdsucks is going to have a field day with it.
Last edited by Ekeda on Fri Jul 03, 2009 6:16 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.

there is no zero
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

lingomaniac88 wrote:Reminds me of what Steven Wright once said:

When I turned two I was really anxious, because I'd doubled my age in a year. I thought, if this keeps up, by the time I'm six I'll be ninety.

But 32 ≠ 90.

I liked this comic, because I do this too (jokingly, of course). Then when the third data point is not what I expected, I just assume it's actually quadratic... etc.

miggit999
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

got burnt by cheese on this one.

Gero
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

ryannayr417 wrote:I like the contemplative look the bride has in this comic.

I know! and he does it with s stick figure!?! She doesn't even have a face to look contemplative with, yet she does! Amazing.

My first response was laughter. Then I looked at the alt text and all I could think was "Oh no, you didn't!" I never even thought POWERTHURST until I got here.

Before you know it, shell be deported to KENYAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!!!

Chuff
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

I love it. Maybe my favorite xkcd yet.
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TunezNZ
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

Do like
Good Luck With That
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SW15243
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

there is no zero wrote:
lingomaniac88 wrote:Reminds me of what Steven Wright once said:

When I turned two I was really anxious, because I'd doubled my age in a year. I thought, if this keeps up, by the time I'm six I'll be ninety.

But 32 ≠ 90.

I liked this comic, because I do this too (jokingly, of course). Then when the third data point is not what I expected, I just assume it's actually quadratic... etc.

I prefer the 'taking instances vastly out of context' approach.

Observe:

"Kurt Cobain and "Dimebag" Darrell Abbot were both long-haired guitarists that were killed by firearms. This proves that 2 out of every 2 guitarists with long hair will be shot to death. Don't become a statistic."

JamesGecko
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

That's horrible. Yet still rather humorous.

Benson
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

Y'know, fundamentally, it's not an extrapolation problem; it's just a bad choice of basis; the polynomial basis simply doesn't model what we know of the underlying system behavior.

Since everyone's heard that if you've had one divorce, any further marriages are likely to end the same way*, let's model it as a periodic function; naturally, we'll use a Fourier basis. (Note that there's really a sampling issue as well; with a sampling period of 24 hours, you can only predict up to frequencies of 0.5 cycles/day, so marriages with exceptionally high frequency content will be aliased!)
Proper extrapolation:
$\frac{1}{2} - \frac{1}{2}\cos\bigg(\left(t-t_{yesterday}\right)\frac{\pi}{1\text{ day}}\bigg)$
Which, as Excalibur0998 pointed out, is much more consistent with expectations.

Question for mathies:
Since this husbands(t) is really [imath]\mathbb{R} \rightarrow \mathbb{Z}[/imath], the continuous Fourier basis of cosines and sines is all wrong. I assume the proper basis is the set of 50% duty cycle square waves at the same frequencies. (I can't be bothered to write it out in proper notation, but I'm sure you understand what I mean.)

Does this "[imath]\mathbb{R} \rightarrow \mathbb{Z}[/imath] Fourier basis" have a name?

*I think everyone's heard this bit of "common knowledge"? I know I have, anyway, but I'm not at all certain the statistics actually bear it out, so take with appropriate salt.

Larethan
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

ryannayr417 wrote:I like the contemplative look the bride has in this comic.

I have to agree with you on that, truely wonderful.
The theory behind it is kinda sound at first, if it has increased by 1 husband in one day, it should go up by 30 husbands in 30 days. But then, its just laughter, laughter and tears.

zorph
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

The man with the graph belongs in marketing.

fbs801
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

The comic reminds of the data that the environmentalists use to prove that global warming exists...

myhill.bob
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

When I was studying mathematics, I have to say, I never expected a Heaviside Step Function to be followed by another. That would have really screwed up my results.

fbs801, not that I want this forum to become another shouting ground for environmentalism (I have to suffer it frequently as I have many friends doing PhDs in climate science, so I really don't!), but there is a huge amount of evidence that many people other than environmentalists believe in global warming too (like most scientists for example, who actually know how to bootstrap rather than do a single extrapolation).

ManaUser
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### Re: "Extrapolating" discussion

Ronfar wrote:Obviously, the problem is that the extrapolation has left out many data points: all the between yesterday and the bride's date of birth in which the bride also had zero husbands. After a number of years equal to her current age, she'll have husband number #2.

We don't know that's true. She could have acquired many husbands during that time, as long as she divorced or otherwise lost an equal number. All we know is that there was a net gain of zero husbands during that time. That doesn't give us a very accurate picture of her actual husband collection pattern, so I think it's safer to use only the most recent data.