Agriculture
Where Have All the Bees Gone?
Chicken Eggs as Drug Factories
Springing forward
Amphibians
Bullfrogs
Newts
Poison Dart Frogs
Animals
Sleepless at Sea
Fishy Sounds
The History of Meow
Behavior
The Science Fair Circuit
Copycat Monkeys
The Other Side of the Zoo Fence
Birds
Chicken
Falcons
Mockingbirds
Chemistry and Materials
Meteorites may have sparked life on Earth
Boosting Fuel Cells
Gooey Secrets of Mussel Power
Computers
New twists for phantom limbs
Hubble trouble doubled
Batteries built by Viruses
Dinosaurs and Fossils
Hunting by Sucking, Long Ago
Digging Dinos
Winged Insects May Go Way Back
E Learning Jamaica
Results of GSAT are in schools this week
E Learning in Jamaica WIN PRIZES and try our Fun Animated Games
2014 GSAT Results for Jamaican Kids
Earth
Salty, Old and, Perhaps, a Sign of Early Life
Explorer of the Extreme Deep
Slip Slidin' Away—Under the Sea
Environment
Plant Gas
Saving Wetlands
Will Climate Change Depose Monarchs?
Finding the Past
Little People Cause Big Surprise
Sahara Cemetery
The Puzzle of Ancient Mariners
Fish
Swordfish
Megamouth Sharks
Lungfish
Food and Nutrition
How Super Are Superfruits?
Eat Out, Eat Smart
Sponges' secret weapon
GSAT English Rules
Whoever vs. Whomever
Who vs. Whom
Who vs. That vs. Which
GSAT Exam Preparation Jamaica
GSAT Practice Papers | GSAT Mathematics | Maths
March 21-22, 2013: Over 43,000 students will take the GSAT Exam
How are students placed after passing the GSAT exam
GSAT Exams Jamaica Scholarships
Results of GSAT are in schools this week
GSAT Exam Preparation
GSAT stars reap scholarship glory
GSAT Mathematics
A Sweet Advance in Candy Packing
Play for Science
Math Naturals
Human Body
Kids now getting 'adult' disease
Smiles Turn Away Colds
Speedy Gene Gives Runners a Boost
Invertebrates
Termites
Lobsters
Walking Sticks
Mammals
Moles
Armadillo
Marmots
Parents
What Not to Say to Emerging Readers
How children learn
The Surprising Meaning and Benefits of Nursery Rhymes
Physics
Black Hole Journey
Extra Strings for New Sounds
Spin, Splat, and Scramble
Plants
Getting the dirt on carbon
Pumping Up Poison Ivy
Seeds of the Future
Reptiles
Pythons
Asp
Copperhead Snakes
Space and Astronomy
Ready, Set, Supernova
Dark Galaxy
A Family in Space
Technology and Engineering
Sugar Power for Cell Phones
A Satellite of Your Own
Slip Sliming Away
The Parts of Speech
Problems with Prepositions
What is a Noun
Countable and Uncountable Nouns
Transportation
Revving Up Green Machines
Flying the Hyper Skies
How to Fly Like a Bat
Weather
Where rivers run uphill
Recipe for a Hurricane
A Dire Shortage of Water
Add your Article

How to Slice a Cake Fairly

Sharing can be hard. Every kid knows that, and mathematicians do, too. So mathematicians have spent a lot of time thinking about how to make sharing easier. Mathematicians are particularly fond of sharing birthday cake. Not just any birthday cake, but one with lots of icing and various decorations, with nuts here and coconut there. Then they ask, if two people like different parts of the cake better, how can they divide the cake into two pieces so that they're both satisfied with the piece that they each get? There's an old solution known as "I cut, you choose." You start by cutting the cake into two pieces that you like equally well. Then your friend picks the one that she prefers. The two pieces don't have to be the same size. If you particularly like nuts, for example, you might make the piece with fewer nuts bigger, so that you'd be happy no matter which piece your friend chose. You'd end up with either a smaller piece with lots of nuts or a larger piece with fewer nuts. But Steven Brams of New York University doesn't think that's fair. When you're done, you get a piece that you might think is worth half the value of the cake. But your friend might think that she got much more than half the value of the cake. For example, suppose that your friend really likes coconut, and the bigger, less nutty piece has lots of coconut. Then she'll think that she's gotten a really great deal. She got not only more cake but also the best part! Brams says that a division should be considered fair only if two people think they both got pieces of the same value. He's worked out a new procedure for cake-cutting that makes this happen. Here's how it works. You and your friend would each tell your mom where you would divide the cake into two pieces. If the two of you happen to pick the same spot, she'd simply divide the cake at that spot. Both of you would be equally happy with your shares. But suppose the two spots are different. If your spot were to the left of your friend's spot, you'd get the piece to the left of your spot. Your friend would get the piece to the right of her spot. And there'd be a piece left over in the middle. Your mom would then split the middle section between you and your friend. That way, you each get a piece that you value equally—plus a bonus! It's a neat idea, but is such a procedure practical? Would you use it? "I don't know if anyone other than me has actually brought a cake in and tried to divide it," says James Tanton, a mathematics teacher at St. Mark's School in Southborough Mass. Such schemes often don't work in practice. "Human beings are too fuzzy," he says. "They change their minds."—J.J. Rehmeyer

How to Slice a Cake Fairly
How to Slice a Cake Fairly








Designed and Powered by HBJamaica.com™