Tag: Pieter Dilg

The math conference

Two mathematicians, Simon and Blume, are at a conference dinner, fighting over the last few pieces of lobster and steak, when another mathematician walks up to them. Having heard about the brilliance of the two, he decides to present them a riddle. After thinking for quite a while, he bends over to Simon, and whispers a number in his ear. Then, he leans over to Blume and whispers a number in his ear as well. Brimming with confidence, he states the following. “I have told each of you a number, one larger than the other, […]

22 juni • Door Pieter Dilg Tijd om te lezen Estimated reading time: 3 minuten

About hamsters and microwaves

Many of you have probably heard the story of the British guy that put his hamster in the microwave. It is a true but very short tale. The hamster died and the guy was sent to jail. How many of you, however, know that one of the first microwaves ever was invented to actually heat up frozen hamsters?  Okay, I said one of the first microwaves. The “official” and better known story about the invention of the microwave oven is not quite related to the one about the hamsters. The microwave oven is actually said to […]

20 mei • Door Pieter Dilg Tijd om te lezen Estimated reading time: 2 minuten

Democratising the stock market

Last week, many eyes were pointed at wall street. I am, however, not yet talking about the GameStop short squeeze that took place around the 27th of January. The establishment of new online stock trading platforms has served as an agora for the public to learn about stock trading and to sell and buy them with a tap on their phone. While sophisticated Wall Street brokers did not bother handling accounts with two hundred dollars, these platforms gladly took in any interested individual.  The public took its share in online stock trading, while still being looked […]

04 februari • Door Pieter Dilg Tijd om te lezen Estimated reading time: 3 minuten

Reversion to mediocrity

Nowadays, research in many fields involves statistics. Whether it comes down to a government’s decisions on measures fighting a pandemic or the Red Bull formula 1 racing team deciding on whether Verstappen should swap tires in the next lap, it sounds like a good idea to back the decision with statistics. For a fair amount of time, appliance of statistics has seemed one of the most irrefutable means of proving a claim or, in other situations, coming to the right conclusion. In their essence, statistics seem, when employed properly, to be telling the story as-is, […]

15 december • Door Pieter Dilg Tijd om te lezen Estimated reading time: 5 minuten

Do you really need a VPN?

Are you reading this article using a VPN? If so, what made you decide to buy one? If not, did you ever consider getting one? Chances are quite small you have never heard of them, as everywhere you surf, advertisements flood you with the advantages of using a VPN. Many famous youtubers are getting sponsored by VPN companies to inform you about discount opportunities at the start of their videos. They all make claims about how you are unsafe on the internet and how using a VPN will solve these problems and wholly protect your privacy. […]

22 oktober • Door Pieter Dilg Tijd om te lezen Estimated reading time: 5 minuten

The impossible program

Each year new computer systems are put into the market, featuring increased memory capacity, better screens but perhaps most importantly, stronger processors. More processing power results in handling more tasks per second or, in other words, less time per task.  A modern computer can carry out most operations in a fraction of a second, even though it took the most powerful computers minutes or even hours, 30 years ago. As computers get stronger, however, the tasks we ask them to perform get more complicated too. Whereas they once had to solve simple mathematical operations, they […]

15 september • Door Pieter Dilg Tijd om te lezen Estimated reading time: 4 minuten

The Duisenberg Pranksters

Sometime in the future, when physical college lectures are once again allowed, one hundred students are attending a lecture of the Multivariate Calculus course. The students, after hearing multiple savvy jokes about their intellect and ability regarding calculus, decide to play a prank on the professor and his colleagues. They plan to boobytrap some of the one hundred doors on the 7-th floor of the Duisenberg building. However, knowing that the professors are quite brilliant, they need to allocate the boobytraps in a manner that is hard to figure out. Near the end of the […]

07 mei • Door Pieter Dilg Tijd om te lezen Estimated reading time: 3 minuten

You got that?

When asked for the most important elements in human life, many could agree on “communication” being high up on the list. It is essential and fundamental to every aspect of life, with few exceptions to be discovered. Up to this day, many methods have been come up with for sending messages across the globe, some being more reliable than others. The field of communication, being a magnet for technological innovation, sees many advances involving reliability and speed, but one issue remains: How can one be sure every message is received?  The two generals Sending a message […]

14 april • Door Pieter Dilg Tijd om te lezen Estimated reading time: 4 minuten

Musical roads

Rumble strips are small bumps in the side of the road to alert drivers when they stray away from the middle of the driveway. Especially for people driving long roads at night, such a strip can be a life-saving instrument. If a tired driver slowly drowses away, he or she will be aroused by the annoying sound that the car makes when driving over these sleeper lines. Also people that are paying attention to their phone instead of the road may be stirred up by the strips. Did you know, however, that in many countries, […]

13 februari • Door Pieter Dilg Tijd om te lezen Estimated reading time: 3 minuten

The truel

Imagine it is 1872, you are sitting in a saloon with Smith and Brown, two of your old friends. However, the three of you do not seem to get along as you did before. As time passes, tall tales turn into boisterous arguments. At some point Smith has had enough and challenges both of you for a truel, a triangular pistol duel. You hesitate, knowing that you are the worst shot out of the three and look at Brown. You both know that Smith has the best aim and Brown comes second. In fact, from the […]

19 december • Door Pieter Dilg Tijd om te lezen Estimated reading time: 3 minuten

Perfectly out of tune

Almost everybody enjoys some nice piano music, at least occasionally. Although some more keen of the instrument than others, many would claim being able to diagnose an out-of-tune piano. Fact is, however, that a piano is never in perfect tune. I’ll tell you why.   The piano is an instrument that, like the guitar, uses the vibration of its strings to produce sound. The tone that a string produces is determined by multiple factors, such as its length, tension and composition. On the piano string, waves reflect from both ends. The superposition of reflecting waves […]

31 oktober • Door Pieter Dilg Tijd om te lezen Estimated reading time: 3 minuten

Predicting earthquakes

Ever since we, humans, started to ruin this planet, we have had to deal with earth’s reciprocation that came in the form of earthquakes. Fortunately, over this long period of time, we got better and better at constructing houses and other types of buildings that could withstand these tremors, up to some extent. However, a hut made out of timber is rebuilt quicker than a skyscraper and, during an earthquake, one probably resides rather in the first than in the latter. Even with present-day architectural technology, there remain incidents claiming hundreds or even thousands of lives. […]

19 september • Door Pieter Dilg Tijd om te lezen Estimated reading time: 4 minuten

By Daniele Zedda • 18 February

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