Wednesday, April 08, 2009

My dad is a math teacher

Did you know there's a difference between understanding and calculating? Think about it. Or rather, don't.


Turns out we understand proportions—fractions—intuitively. Without having to calculate them. It has something to do with "the intraparietal sulcus (IPS) and the prefrontal cortex — [the] brain regions important for processing whole numbers," or so says this week's issue of The Journal of Neuroscience.

Regardless whether the fraction is presented in words or numbers (you know, "1/3" or "one-third"), the subjects in the study responded the same way—appearing to understand the fraction implicitly, rather than needing to calculate it.

Wouldn't it be handy if when your boyfriend started speaking, you understood him implicitly, instead of having to think about what he really meant? I mean, way more useful than fractions. Seriously.

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