# What does equal mean

Science 23 Sep '17 19:57
1. 23 Sep '17 19:571 edit
If I have three same size pizzas and cut one in half another into 8ths and the last in 32nds, and each box contains one, four and sixteen slices respectively, would you say each box is the same?

The total weight of pizza may be equal, but would they be exactly the same?
2. moonbus
Uber-Nerd
23 Sep '17 20:24
This reminds me of joke in which a pizza parlour proprietor asks a customer whether he wants his pizza cut into four or eight slices, and the customer answers, "oh, I'm on a diet, just four pieces please."
3. 23 Sep '17 20:58
Originally posted by @moonbus
This reminds me of joke in which a pizza parlour proprietor asks a customer whether he wants his pizza cut into four or eight slices, and the customer answers, "oh, I'm on a diet, just four pieces please."
Another way of looking at it, if you put all those pieces on a platter and mixed them up, would you be able to put them in their original boxes?

If you had one apple, 4apples and 16 apples and put them on a table, could you tell which apples belonged in group of one, four and sixteen?

1+4+16=21 because you can't distinguish between the apples once you put them together.
4. 23 Sep '17 23:32
Originally posted by @eladar
If I have three same size pizzas and cut one in half another into 8ths and the last in 32nds, and each box contains one, four and sixteen slices respectively, would you say each box is the same?

The total weight of pizza may be equal, but would they be exactly the same?
Uhh you'll have to ask a woman...if she's "equal" to a man..
5. 24 Sep '17 06:22
Originally posted by @eladar
If you had one apple, 4apples and 16 apples and put them on a table, could you tell which apples belonged in group of one, four and sixteen?
Yes, of course! No apple is unique!
6. 24 Sep '17 10:54
Originally posted by @fabianfnas
Yes, of course! No apple is unique!
Replace apples with the letter x if you like.
7. DeepThought
24 Sep '17 14:19
Originally posted by @eladar
Another way of looking at it, if you put all those pieces on a platter and mixed them up, would you be able to put them in their original boxes?

If you had one apple, 4apples and 16 apples and put them on a table, could you tell which apples belonged in group of one, four and sixteen?

1+4+16=21 because you can't distinguish between the apples once you put them together.
If the apples are identical then they'll be a type of fermion and it'll be impossible to have more than one apple in a group. It's implausible that apples are bosonic.
8. 24 Sep '17 14:241 edit
Originally posted by @deepthought
If the apples are identical then they'll be a type of fermion and it'll be impossible to have more than one apple in a group. It's implausible that apples are bosonic.
As I said to the other person trying to be a funny guy, then think of some object a person could not see the difference between with the naked eye.

It is a serious topic, but perhaps one you are afraid to look at.
9. sonhouse
Fast and Curious
24 Sep '17 16:14
Originally posted by @eladar
If I have three same size pizzas and cut one in half another into 8ths and the last in 32nds, and each box contains one, four and sixteen slices respectively, would you say each box is the same?

The total weight of pizza may be equal, but would they be exactly the same?
The distribution of mass would be different but so what? If say, chipmunks were eating them, I don't think they would care if some bits were bigger.
10. 24 Sep '17 16:24
Originally posted by @sonhouse
The distribution of mass would be different but so what? If say, chipmunks were eating them, I don't think they would care if some bits were bigger.
But doesn't equal mean exactly the same?
11. lemon lime
ook ook ahchoo
25 Sep '17 06:003 edits
Originally posted by @eladar
But doesn't equal mean exactly the same?
It depends on what is being compared.

In your pizza example the size of the three pizzas would be the same, but the number of slices (and slice sizes) of each pizza would not be the same.
Three equal sizes, but not equal number of slices...

Or, were you intentionally not putting all the slices of each pizza back into their original boxes?
...cut one in half another into 8ths and the last in 32nds, and each box contains one, four and sixteen slices respectively,

Does this mean you ate half of each pizza, and each box now contains a half pizza? Or did you mix various sized slices into each box?
12. wolfgang59
evolved
25 Sep '17 06:29
Originally posted by @eladar
But doesn't equal mean exactly the same?
No.
13. 25 Sep '17 09:38
Originally posted by @eladar
If I have three same size pizzas and cut one in half another into 8ths and the last in 32nds, and each box contains one, four and sixteen slices respectively, would you say each box is the same?

The total weight of pizza may be equal, but would they be exactly the same?
No loss in the cut?
14. 25 Sep '17 10:02
Originally posted by @lemon-lime
It depends on what is being compared.

In your pizza example the size of the three pizzas would be the same, but the number of slices (and slice sizes) of each pizza would not be the same.
Three equal sizes, but not equal number of slices...

Or, were you intentionally not putting all the slices of each pizza back into their original boxes?
[b]...c ...[text shortened]... izza, and each box now contains a half pizza? Or did you mix various sized slices into each box?
That's the problem. Many people believe equal means exactly the same which creates paradoxes when it is used differently.
15. 25 Sep '17 10:03
Originally posted by @freakykbh
No loss in the cut?
Not measurable with kitchen spring scales.