Gender Math

Today a friend sent me another online gender survey(AOGS).  I’ve seen quite a few of these and they usually just perpetuate gender stereotypes that guys are selfish, logical, math, brutes and girls are more social, emotional, and artistic.  Now there may be grain of truth in that but obviously it does not apply to everyone.  However if you keep those stereotypes in mind you could pretty much fix each quiz to give you the result you want.

The interesting thing is that you can do statistics on any random set of questions, which seems to be what this new quiz does.  These are little harder to predict bu I’ll choose some of my favorites:

“What’s the capital of Uzbekistan?”

DAMNED IF I KNOW.  I like trivia.  Someday I will study up to be on Jeopardy but until then I don’t do capitals.  However, this is a multiple choice question where the other choice is Tashkent, but I’m not going to cheat.

Do you eat the red ones last?

NO.  I don’t eat M&Ms, I eat the yellow Starburst and the orange Smarties.  Those are the best.

“Think of your favorite food. If I stuck it in a blender, liquefied it, and then offered you some, would you drink it?”

YES,  My favorite food = Brussel sprouts.  Now I know most people wouldn’t eat them even in solid form, but I love them particularly with sautéed with some olive oil and garlic.  They are the perfect bite-sized vegetable.  Now if you blend them, people do tend to have problems with green drinks, but Naked’s  “Green Machine” veggie drink is delicious so I would go for it.

Now how does this relate to gender?  Perhaps men or women are more adventurous when it comes to food?  Or do women prefer sweeter things like fruit or chocolate (make great shakes) while men prefer pizza and steak (not so good).  An informal office survey backs up both of these theories.   The girls would gladly have strawberry or even crab shakes, the men would refuse blended pizza or steak.

“Sushi is raw fish, hey?”

WHO CARES? IT’S GOOD!!  Now before I came to California, I had never eaten sushi.  In fact I was one of the pickiest eaters you could find avoiding anything saucy or slimy.  But I have been working very hard to be more adventurous.  The basic Maguro Sushi (tuna) is fantastic.  If you don’t eat sushi, just start with that before working on the more unusual sea urchins and eels.

“Isn’t it too cold in here?”

YES, though this is just because my office is cold.  I don’t have a genetic disposition to being cold, though I am pretty sure my wife does.  I could see a strong gender correlation here.

“Does the sequence ‘543210’ appear somewhere in the digits of pi?”

YES.  Perhaps this is a simple as a “do you love math” question which is a gender stereotype.  π is infinite so contains every sequence of numbers.  Turns out, 543210 is the 414238th digit after the decimal point.  Yet many girls are smart and should know that.  I prefer to think there is a deeper philosophical difference going on here.    As for π, I like both the food and the irrational number.  I am just fascinated by infinity – in its boundless, timeless form.

Do you think mankind will encounter aliens in your lifetime?

NO.  I believe in aliens because space is WAY WAY WAY too big (but not quite infinite) for them not to exist.  Unfortunately, unless someone figures out to break the speed of light, it will take a few thousand years to even send them a text message.  Yet, rules are made to be broken, so please try.

“Does fuzzy logic tickle?”

YES.  I am very ticklish.   I am susceptible to the psychic tickle.  Even the mere suggestion of the remote possibility of a tickle, makes me scream and squirm.  Just writing this makes my skin crawl.  As no touching is required, even math can tickle.

“Is this question worth asking?”

YES.  Statistics love data, so another question won’t hurt.  Would love to see a graph.

So I answer all 35 questions, and this is what I find out:

 “You’re a girl! Plus, I’m 17% sure, which is quite sure for this type of system. Of course the system is hardly 100% accurate, but using data from the #4599 other people who have taken the test, it is now 20% better than a chance guess.”

In the time it took to write this blog another 1000 people have already taken the test – and with each one the test gets a little better.  Each participant is asked whether they got it right.   I still don’t know how to answer that.

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