# 2005 Top Ten of Polemic for Mathematics

- Statistic
- A statistic (singular) or sample statistic is any quantity computed from values in a sample which is considered for a statistical purpose. Statistical purposes include estimating a population parameter, describing a sample, or evaluating a hypothesis. The average of sample values is a statistic. The term statistic is used both for the function and for the value of the function on a given sample. When a statistic is being used for a specific purpose, it may be referred to by a name indicating its purpose
- Trigonometric interpolation
- In mathematics, trigonometric interpolation is interpolation with trigonometric polynomials. Interpolation is the process of finding a function which goes through some given data points. For trigonometric interpolation, this function has to be a trigonometric polynomial, that is, a sum of sines and cosines of given periods. This form is especially suited for interpolation of periodic functions
- Degenerate distribution
- In mathematics, a degenerate distribution is, according to some, a probability distribution in a space with support only on a manifold of lower dimension, and according to others a distribution with support only at a single point. By the latter definition, it is a deterministic distribution and takes only a single value. Examples include a two-headed coin and rolling a die whose sides all show the same number. This distribution satisfies the definition of "random variable" even though it does not appear
- Perturbation theory (quantum mechanics)
- In quantum mechanics, perturbation theory is a set of approximation schemes directly related to mathematical perturbation for describing a complicated quantum system in terms of a simpler one. The idea is to start with a simple system for which a mathematical solution is known, and add an additional "perturbing" Hamiltonian representing a weak disturbance to the system. If the disturbance is not too large, the various physical quantities associated with the perturbed system can be expressed as "corrections
- Pulse
- In medicine, a pulse represents the tactile arterial palpation of the cardiac cycle (heartbeat) by trained fingertips. The pulse may be palpated in any place that allows an artery to be compressed near the surface of the body, such as at the neck, wrist, at the groin, behind the knee, near the ankle joint, and on foot. Pulse is equivalent to measuring the heart rate. The heart rate can also be measured by listening to the heart beat by auscultation, traditionally using a stethoscope and counting it for a
- NP-easy
- In complexity theory, the complexity class NP-easy is the set of function problems that are solvable in polynomial time by a deterministic Turing machine with an oracle for some decision problem in NP
- Surface area
- The surface area of a solid object is a measure of the total area that the surface of the object occupies. The mathematical definition of surface area in the presence of curved surfaces is considerably more involved than the definition of arc length of one-dimensional curves, or of the surface area for polyhedra, for which the surface area is the sum of the areas of its faces. Smooth surfaces, such as a sphere, are assigned surface area using their representation as parametric surfaces. This definition of
- Pip (counting)
- Pips are small but easily countable items, such as the dots on dominoes and dice, or the symbols on a playing card that denote its suit and value
- Sides of an equation
- In mathematics, LHS is informal shorthand for the left-hand side of an equation. Similarly, RHS is the right-hand side. The two sides have the same value, expressed differently, since equality is symmetric
- Unicity distance
- In cryptography, unicity distance is the length of an original ciphertext needed to break the cipher by reducing the number of possible spurious keys to zero in a brute force attack. That is, after trying every possible key, there should be just one decipherment that makes sense, i.e. expected amount of ciphertext needed to determine the key completely, assuming the underlying message has redundancy