Sunday, November 7, 2010

"Proofiness" as mathematical truthiness

The NY Times Magazine "On Language" column covers Truthiness, Stephen Colbert's neologism describing things that sound true but aren't.

"The latest in the “X-iness” parade is the title of Charles Seife’s new book, “Proofiness,” defined by Seife as “the art of using bogus mathematical arguments to prove something that you know in your heart is true — even when it’s not.” Seife, an associate professor of journalism at New York University, told me that the title is very much a homage to Colbert. He credits his wife with recognizing during the writing of the book that his topic was “the mathematical analogue of truthiness.” "

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