Fire up Siri and ask it “What is zero divided by zero.”
You get the true mathematical answer:
But Siri goes on a bit of a rant after that.
Here’s a transcription of the bizarre answer Siri gives you:
Imagine that you have zero cookies and you split them evenly among zero friends. How many cookies does each person get?
See? It doesn’t make sense. And Cookie Monster is sad that there are no cookies. And you are sad that you have no friends.
And if you’re interested, a maths lover, or just think Siri is plain wrong about the whole idea of 0/0 being indeterminate, Wolfram MathWorld has the technical answer to squash your fears:
Division by zero is the operation of taking the quotient of any number x
and 0, i.e., x/0
. The uniqueness of division breaks down when dividing by zero, since the product 0 • y = 0
is the same for any y
, so y
cannot be recovered by inverting the process of multiplication. 0 is the only number with this property and, as a result, division by zero is undefined for real numbers and can produce a fatal condition called a “division by zero error” in computer programs.
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