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Physics humor for the day. - CERisE's Testing for L

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August 29th, 2004

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06:46 pm - Physics humor for the day.
You have two cats. They're the same size, shape, breed, weight, litter, color, and so on.

You place the two cats on a wooden board, side by side. You then raise on end of the board. As you raise it, one of them slides off. Why?

Clearly, one of them had a greater µ ; )

µ is the Greek letter mu. It's the coefficient of static friction. It's also pronounced "mew" like the sound a cat makes.

Static friction is the term for the force a surface applies to an object by friction which keeps it still. That force is equal to µ * N, where N is the normal force (the equal and opposite force the surface applies to the weight of the object). Specifically, the force is in the range of 0-µ*N. If the force necessary to keep an object from moving exceeds µ*N, then it slides off.

Having a greater µ in this case is a pun on the sound a cat makes (mew) as well as a higher coefficient of static friction.

EDIT: added an HR to separate the explanation from the joke.

(7 comments | Leave a comment)


[User Picture]
Date:August 29th, 2004 08:55 pm (UTC)
ROFL! When I was in physics, I would always draw my mus with a little kitty face on them. My teacher was not amused.
[User Picture]
Date:August 29th, 2004 08:57 pm (UTC)
That's funny, 'cause when I was in chem, I always drew mole faces as an abbreviation for moles. My teacher actually didn't mind :) possibly because there is no other useful abbreviation.
[User Picture]
Date:August 30th, 2004 07:56 pm (UTC)
Your teacher was a sad, sad, sad human being. =(
[User Picture]
Date:August 29th, 2004 11:39 pm (UTC)
The ark lands after The Flood. Noah lets all the animals out. Says he,
"Go and multiply." Several months pass. Noah decides to check up on
the animals. All are doing fine except a pair of snakes. "What's the
problem?" says Noah. "Cut down some trees and let us live there", say
the snakes. Noah follows their advice. Several more weeks pass. Noah
checks on the snakes again. Lots of little snakes, everybody is happy.
Noah asks, "Want to tell me how the trees helped?" "Certainly", say the
snakes. "We're adders, and we need logs to multiply."
[User Picture]
Date:August 30th, 2004 12:58 am (UTC)
now THAT is a good one! :)

(albeit easier. But funny!)
[User Picture]
Date:August 30th, 2004 07:58 pm (UTC)
I've always heard that one delivered as a park ranger trying to save an endangered species. Naturally, he gets the advice to cut down trees from a CS major.

Hughey tells that one every so often.
[User Picture]
Date:September 7th, 2004 12:52 pm (UTC)
I've heard it that way too.

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