# 2011 Top Ten of Polemic for Mathematics

Petals Around the Rose
Petals Around the Rose is a mathematically challenging puzzle in which the object is to work out the formula by which a number is derived from the roll of a set of five or six dice. It is often used as an exercise in inductive reasoning. The puzzle became popular in computer circles in the mid 1970s, particularly through an anecdote recounted in Personal Computing which depicts Bill Gates working out the solution in an airport
Maya numerals
The Mayan numeral system was the system to represent numbers and calendar dates in the Maya civilization. It was a vigesimal (base-20) positional numeral system. The numerals are made up of three symbols; zero, one and five. For example, thirteen is written as three dots in a horizontal row above two horizontal bars; sometimes it is also written as three vertical dots to the left of two vertical bars. With these three symbols, each of the twenty vigesimal digits could be written
Linear equation
In mathematics, a linear equation is an equation that may be put in the
Triangular prism
In geometry, a triangular prism is a three-sided prism; it is a polyhedron made of a triangular base, a translated copy, and 3 faces joining corresponding sides. A right triangular prism has rectangular sides, otherwise it is oblique. A uniform triangular prism is a right triangular prism with equilateral bases, and square sides
Counterargument
In reasoning and argument mapping, a counterargument is an objection to an objection. A counterargument can be used to rebut an objection to a premise, a main contention or a lemma. Synonyms of counterargument may include rebuttal, reply, counterstatement, counterreason, comeback and response. The attempt to rebut an argument may involve generating a counterargument or finding a counterexample
Randomness
In common parlance, randomness is the apparent or actual lack of pattern or predictability in events. A random sequence of events, symbols or steps often has no order and does not follow an intelligible pattern or combination. Individual random events are, by definition, unpredictable, but if the probability distribution is known, the frequency of different outcomes over repeated events is predictable. For example, when throwing two dice, the outcome of any particular roll is unpredictable, but a sum of 7
Statistician
A statistician is a person who works with theoretical or applied statistics. The profession exists in both the private and public sectors
Round-off error
A roundoff error, also called rounding error, is the difference between the result produced by a given algorithm using exact arithmetic and the result produced by the same algorithm using finite-precision, rounded arithmetic. Rounding errors are due to inexactness in the representation of real numbers and the arithmetic operations done with them. This is a form of quantization error. When using approximation equations or algorithms, especially when using finitely many digits to represent real numbers, one
Arbelos
In geometry, an arbelos is a plane region bounded by three semicircles with three apexes such that each corner of each semicircle is shared with one of the others (connected), all on the same side of a straight line that contains their diameters
999 (number)
999 is a natural number following 998 and preceding 1000