# Maths is hard?

• According to this article, three quarters of participants in a study were unable to correctly interpret a nutrition label:

2,000 people were shown a chocolate bar label setting out the amount of sugars in the bar both in grams and as a percentage of the total daily allowance. They were then asked which of six options came nearest to the daily reference intake for sugars in grams

Only 26% gave the correct answer. But it seems maths is hard for journalists too. The article sub-heading gives the correct result:

Three-quarters of adults can’t work out how much sugar they are meant to consume, a new survey has revealed.

But one of the section headings in the article reverses it:

One in four can’t understand nutrition label

The second paragraph in that section starts with the words "The finding that only one in every four people could understand the sugar information...", so there's not much excuse for getting the heading wrong.

So... maths is hard, and so is grocery shopping? And article writing? Guess we'd better all just go and watch some reality TV then.

• It’s been my observation that your average journalist (at least round where I live) seems to mainly be skilled in being a journalist — not in any of the things they’re reporting on, leading to errors like this, that anyone who hasten a little background in the subject (or a highly specialist skill like, oh, basic mathematics) easily spots.

However,

One in four can’t understand nutrition label

isn’t necessarily wrong, given that the article also says:

24% declined to make any estimate, saying they didn’t know.

• Writers/journalists/authors/whatever almost never write the headlines or section headings. Those are added by sub editors, who often don't understand the articles they're working on.

• @NedFodder said in Maths is hard?:

sub editors

I was just envisioning them working at Subway, adjusting the product to customer requirements…

• "Maths is hard"

nuff said.

It's either plural or it's not. I don't fucking care if it's commonly treated that way.

• @anotherusername I bet you also cringe at 'a piece of data'.

As well you should

• @RaceProUK said in Maths is hard?:

a piece of data

What's wrong with that? "Piece" is singular.

• @RaceProUK said in Maths is hard?:

@anotherusername I bet you also cringe at 'a piece of data'.

As well you should

I will admit to snickering at "piece of Lego". European custom to the contrary, one is a "Lego", two or more are "Legos".

• @Gurth said in Maths is hard?:

One in four can’t understand nutrition label

isn’t necessarily wrong, given that the article also says:

24% declined to make any estimate, saying they didn’t know.

Are you seriously contending that the 50% of people who answered but got it wrong should be said to have understood the label?

@da-Doctah: what if a piece breaks off from a Lego? (Admittedly most of them seem pretty much indestructible by ordinary means.)

• @ben_lubar And 'data' is plural; the singular is 'datum'.

You don't say 'a piece of cakes', do you?

• @Scarlet_Manuka said in Maths is hard?:

Are you seriously contending that the 50% of people who answered but got it wrong should be said to have understood the label?

I’m saying that the 50% who got it wrong most likely thought they understood the label, and that the line “One in four can’t understand nutrition label” can be taken to refer to the 24% who admitted they didn’t understand the label.

• @Scarlet_Manuka said in Maths is hard?:

what if a piece breaks off from a Lego? (Admittedly most of them seem pretty much indestructible by ordinary means.)

"piece of a Lego" != "piece of Lego"

cf "I know a little about English" vs "I know little about English".

• @RaceProUK said in Maths is hard?:

@ben_lubar And 'data' is plural; the singular is 'datum'.

You don't say 'a piece of cakes', do you?

ENTER DOOR
GET A DATA

Filed under: [Elevator Action](#returns), @onyx ?

• @aliceif I'm guessing that's from a game, but Google is being a right bitchcomplain and refusing to give me meaningful results

• @RaceProUK

Can't find a screenshot showing the relevant phrase though.

• @dkf said in Maths is hard?:

@NedFodder said in Maths is hard?:

sub editors

I was just envisioning them working at Subway, adjusting the product to customer requirements…

Given the state of "legacy" media these days, that might fit their abilities more closely...

• @da-Doctah said in Maths is hard?:

@RaceProUK said in Maths is hard?:

@anotherusername I bet you also cringe at 'a piece of data'.

As well you should

I will admit to snickering at "piece of Lego". European custom to the contrary, one is a "Lego", two or more are "Legos".

They're LEGO bricks, not Legos!!

• @da-Doctah said in Maths is hard?:

I will admit to snickering at "piece of Lego". European custom to the contrary, one is a "Lego", two or more are "Legos".

And here I assumed it was a misspelled call for a return to colonialism, or perhaps some sort of statement of support for Boko Haram. I imagine that the Nigerians will be relieved to find out that this wasn't the case.

• @aliceif said in Maths is hard?:

@RaceProUK said in Maths is hard?:

@ben_lubar And 'data' is plural; the singular is 'datum'.

You don't say 'a piece of cakes', do you?

ENTER DOOR
GET A DATA

A huge green fierce snake bars the way!

• @da-Doctah said in Maths is hard?:

European custom to the contrary

Are you aware of how stupid that sounds, considering where LEGO comes from?

It's "a piece of LEGO", "some pieces of LEGO", or just "some LEGO".

According to the LEGO group...

The LEGO brand name must never be used as a generic
term or in the plural or as a possessive pronoun, e.g.
“LEGO’s”.

• @Gurth said in Maths is hard?:

the line “One in four can’t understand nutrition label” can be taken to refer to the 24% who admitted they didn’t understand the label.

No, it really can't.

• @tufty said in Maths is hard?:

considering where LEGO comes from

LEGO Land?

• @Luhmann Which one? The one in Billund that is…

• @dkf
Physical locations are a to Lego jokes

• @ben_lubar said in Maths is hard?:

@RaceProUK said in Maths is hard?:

a piece of data

What's wrong with that? "Piece" is singular.

Then it would be "a datum". Surely such a giant as yourself would know that.

• @Scarlet_Manuka said in Maths is hard?:

what if a piece breaks off from a Lego?

That'd be a shard.

• @FrostCat said in Maths is hard?:

@Scarlet_Manuka said in Maths is hard?:

what if a piece breaks off from a Lego?

That'd be a shard.

In that case, you'll have to ask the Elves to reforge it for you.

• @Scarlet_Manuka said in Maths is hard?:

what if a piece breaks off from a Lego?

You'll find it next time you're walking around barefoot.

• @RaceProUK said in Maths is hard?:

You don't say 'a piece of cakes', do you?

Cake is uncountable in this context, so plural form is reduntant.

• @ScholRLEA said in Maths is hard?:

@FrostCat said in Maths is hard?:

@Scarlet_Manuka said in Maths is hard?:

what if a piece breaks off from a Lego?

That'd be a shard.

In that case, you'll have to ask the Elves to reforge it for you.

Nope. Not Elves. Just one semi-suicidal Gelfling.

• @ScholRLEA said in Maths is hard?:

@FrostCat said in Maths is hard?:

@Scarlet_Manuka said in Maths is hard?:

what if a piece breaks off from a Lego?

That'd be a shard.

In that case, you'll have to ask the Elvesf to reforge it for you.

If Lego has an invariant null plural, then so does Elf.

And while we're in Middle Earth, the plural of Dwarf is Dwarrow.

• @da-Doctah said in Maths is hard?:

If Lego has an invariant null plural, then so does Elf.

nope

@da-Doctah said in Maths is hard?:

And while we're in Middle Earth, the plural of Dwarf is Dwarrow.

nope

• @da-Doctah said in Maths is hard?:

And while we're in Middle Earth, the plural of Dwarf is Dwarrow.

Well, so the good Professor averred. Most people didn't take him up on that, and even he used 'dwarves' in the stories, he just opined that it would be 'dwarrow' had the term evolved with the rest of modern English (he specifically drew a parallel to 'goose/geese' and a few other irregular plurals which I don't remember).

@ben_lubar said:

[nope]

Given that modern ideas of dwarves and elves came almost entirely from LOTR, and have overshadowed the earlier images of them almost completely (except for those parts Tolkien was actually using, many of which were largely forgotten until he reintroduced them), I would give the man the benefit of the doubt.

Or do you really think that @da-Doctah gives half a shit about Dwarf Fortress? 'Cos if so, seriously, ego much?

• This post is deleted!

• @ScholRLEA said in Maths is hard?:

do you really think that @da-Doctahanybody gives half a shit about Dwarf Fortress?

FTFY. HTH. HAND.

HALF MAN HALF BISCUIT-DICKIE DAVIES EYES THE VIDEO – 04:27
— VALLEYOFGWANGI

• @tufty said in Maths is hard?:

@Scarlet_Manuka said in Maths is hard?:

what if a piece breaks off from a Lego?

You'll find it next time you're walking around barefoot.

But only if the lights are off. That guarantees you'll crack your shin into the coffee table also.

• @dcon said in Maths is hard?:

But only if the lights are off. That guarantees you'll crack your shin into the coffee table also.

Nah, the Lego is all in my son's bedroom, there's no coffee table in there.

I do go in there every Wednesday night to empty his bin, and that's certainly an exciting adventure if I've taken my shoes off. Fortunately I can usually exploit drifts of clothes or paper as shields.

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