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Erdos-Bacon number

A recent game of 6 degrees of Kevin Bacon (which shouldn't be played with people who grew up in the 80s) got me thinking about Erdos - that insanely prolific mathematician. He published over 1400 papers in his lifetime (1913 - 1996). It's now commonplace for mathematicians to chest bump over their Erdos numbers (it's true, I've seen it).

Interestingly, a small number of people are connected to both Erdős and Bacon and thus have an Erdős–Bacon number. Actress-mathematician, Danica McKellar, best known for playing Winnie Cooper on the TV series, The Wonder Years, has Erdős number of 4 and a Bacon number of 2 (I always liked Winnie). The lowest known Erdős–Bacon num is 3 for Daniel Kleitman, a math prof at MIT; his Erdős number is 1 and his Bacon number is 2 (he had a short cameo in Good Will Hunting).

I wonder what the degrees of separation are between Erdos and Bacon?

Lol! this cracked me up! I've always found sub-cultures fascinating and to get a glimpse into the mathematicians'club is pretty cool and totally unexpected.

ReplyDeleteDo you have an Erdős number as well?

Erdos-Bacon separation is at least 3, through Daniel Kleitman, but I'd guess it's 2, somehow.

ReplyDeleteAlso, really like the image. It's beautiful.

I punched Kevin Bacon in the face then did some Laplace transformations on his shirt. Erdos-Bacon number 0.5! Suck on that Winnie.

ReplyDelete