Sometimes I laugh when I read the search engine terms that have led people to my blog. Other times I’m left scratching my head. What in the world are these people thinking? So, for your reading pleasure, I present a few phrases that must have meaning to someone:

## man falling off a cliff applet

Well, it sound more dramatic than the cannonballs and flying arrows we used when I took physics.

## crazy math challenge free worksheets

As in, “I’m crazy about math”? Or is it, “Math drives me crazy”?

## torture tables maths

Yeah, my kids say the same thing!

## surreal numbers birthdays ordinals

This has got to be my all-time favorite. I recognize each term individually, but the combination is a real puzzle. The funniest thing is that, whatever the person was looking for, he or she came back to my blog *five times* that day.

## in maths what are happy numbers

I had never heard of this, but Number Gossip has the answer.

## casade model of learning

I think the person meant “cascade model.” When I tested this search term, I found an unending list of websites containing “casa de [fill in the blank].” My favorite was the joke page: “Dos morenas y una rubia estan invitadas a casa de un rey del petroleo en Texas…”

The “surreal numbers birthdays ordinals” is easy to explain. They were searching for information on John Conway’s surreal numbers. Each surreal number has a property called its “birthday”, and the surreal numbers naturally give rise to the ordinals. The wikipedia article I linked to is a bit dense, but (as described in the article) the surreal numbers were first introduced by Donald Knuth in Surreal numbers : how two ex-students turned on to pure mathematics and found total happiness, which is a really rather remarkable book, and still a good introduction to the topic.

I should add that Knuth’s book is quite appropriate for motivated high school students!

Thanks for the explanation, Brent! I read an article on surreal numbers from the Carnival of Mathematics, but I had forgotten that the numbers had birthdays. My brain is a sieve.

I am keeping a list of the ones that have brought people to my blog also. The best one so far is “eclectic parrots.” I didn’t know parrots were eclectic, although I am sure they aren’t terribly organized.

Probably ended with me because I have a parrot picture on my sidebar and because I am an eclectic homeschooler. But still…what were they looking for?

I am going to go look at the surreal numbers. Sounds intereesting.

Joyful Days/variagatedyarn (THSL)

Hi, Joyful Days!

I was lurking on your blog, and my youngest dd peeked over my shoulder. She made me stop reading so she could look at the pictures. She lo-o-o-o-oves your cat!