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Limiting Complexity*

By: Aayush Chadha (School of Computer Science)
Competition Year: 2017
Votes (1) | Comments (0)
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The ideals I have cherished all this while,
Are being desecrated by concepts that are just vile.
The sacred epitomes of Euclid are treated as a joke,
In a short while, mathematics might not even matter to the next door bloke.

This absurdities must be brought to a halt,
Our so called “modern mathematicians” are definitely at fault.
Alas, my words are paid no heed,
I had tried to raise my voice against this gross misdeed.

Since my appeals didn’t gain much traction,
I am trying to explain here, a tiny fraction.

I planned,
that through my book, Alice in the Underland,
People would understand ,
The calamity that awaits us,
If we don’t stop it fast, it may create a (P)fuss.

There were subtle hints in the book,
I doubt if any of you took a look
And noticed a part that was integral to the plot
As Alice became the size of a “telescope” from that of an ink blot

I had tried to question the difference between nothing and something extremely small
But I suppose I hit a wall
It didn’t seem rational to me to adhere to such an idea
Hence I passed on my confusion to little Alice
Who in turn became a little confused with her multiplication
As her answers changed their base locations
Unary, Binary, base 10 to twenty four
That is some folk lore
Poor Alice remained confused
I am willing to bet your mathematical senses were also subdued.

Don’t you see how these people are playing with the measurement system?
Just crushing under their feet, centuries of wisdom.

This was a mere introduction to the follies of my so called co-workers
As we go along we will encounter more of their shmcher( pronounce shmurker).


Lets move on as Alice did,
To meet the caterpillar who puzzled the little kid
He was wise and old,
His suggestion was multifold,
“You must keep your temper”
Was what he said
And offered her a gift
Which made her neck shift,
He had warned her,
Like I am warning you
We can’t fiddle around with proportion,
Mathematics is not a field subject to torsion.
You cannot make a pair of rules
Whose application only befools.


Now comes my favourite part,
Here Alice meets the Duchess, who wasn’t too smart
She was accompanied by a baby and a cook
And the poor baby was terribly shook
They were cooking soup when they met her
It already had too much pepper as it were
This made the party sneeze
Their noses stung like bees
The baby started bawling
And his mother gave him a nice hauling
He was thrusted into little Alice’s hands
As the mother went to play with the Queen
Alice was left to test if nursing a baby was in her gene
She finally managed to twist and turn it
The only way she found to stop it from throwing a fit
Then, a marvel took place
The baby, who was human, turned into a pig
Alice, at first, couldn’t believe in this queer case
I surely feel, Jean-Victor Poncelet had had a mighty swig
When he had thought of this weird gig.

How can one assume
that a shape transformed
can hold on
to a certain property
when you have just committed robbery
with such slobbery?
That young one was either a pig or a baby
Your geometry brings in a maybe
I disagree with this principle
You have just crucified something really simple.

I, for one, never understood complex numbers
How can something as absurd
Like the square root of a negative number exist
Weren’t real numbers enough,
That you had to cloud maths in this imaginary mist?
Reductio Ad Absurdum is the universal truth
“Quite Easily Done” should be taught to our youth.

Bear with me, we are nearing the end
Time is something I am not willing to bend,
However, Mister Hamilton saw it differently
He thought he could use TIME so gently.
You see, he came up with the quaternion system
I just knew that this was a singularly negative step.
Many of you might never use this,
but for mathematicians this was 3 Dimensional rotational bliss.



I did my bit and didn’t let the characters at the T-Party sit
They rotated around the “plane” table as long as time didn’t.
Alice joined them, and was questioned
“Why is the raven like a writing desk”?
Non commutativity of Quaternions were mentioned.
For you know, “I see what I eat” and “I eat what I see are not quite the same thing.
Without 4, the party didn’t have quite the same zing.
I thought, could explain to you a lot over here
But then you wouldn’t be able to bear.

With this I end my plea,
Please forgive me
If I came across as a little orthodox
These thoughts couldn’t be contained in a box
I can see time wind down on the clocks

*This poem is originally formatted to appear like the symbol of Pi, which is irrational, and is representative of the irrationality of modern mathematics in the Victorian times, since Alice in the Wonderland was written then and I wrote the poem the way Lewis Carroll himself would have.
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