Zipf's Law and Summer Learning

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One of the beauties of life-long learning is that there's always more to learn. One of the benefits of homeschooling is that we don't feel the need to "stop learning" even when school is out.

I recently bumped into the idea of Zipf's law: In many rankings, the thing at the top is often twice as frequent as what is in second place. And third place is half of that. So, in theory, the word the should show up twice as often as of on this blog. And of should occur about twice as frequently as, say, and.

Hat Tip
Seth Godin

I had no idea.

I also quickly found that I had no idea what the Wikipedia article was talking about either. I don't recognize the Hurwitz zeta function. I've never used a Log-log graph. And, while I was once able to read the equations splattered across the page, they now look as unintelligible as my first day of Calculus.

However, I was very proud of myself for recognizing Benford's Law because I had heard a RadioLab show about Benford (My wife and I enjoy RadioLab. We often find it fascinating and insightful, not to mention fun <smile>).

What have you learned (or rediscovered) recently?

 ~Luke Holzmann
Filmmaker, Writer, Empty Nester

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