Multiplication

Beyond the 12x12 that's commonly taught in schools, I also know various products where one factor goes up to about 17 (e.g., 3x17, 4x17), certainly all the squares of 13-17. This isn't from an effort to memorize, it's just that I've done them so many times that eventually they became part of my memory.

Decimal Equivalents of Fractions

Handypeople and trade workers are always measuring in eighths of an inch, and often sixteenths, so I know the decimal equivalents of 1/8, 3/8, 5/8, and 7/8. I learned the sixteenths from trading stocks back in the days before decimal trading.

Decimal equivalents of sevenths

Years ago I noticed that the decimals for all the sevenths repeat:

1/7 = 0.142857

2/7 = 0.285714

3/7 = 0.428571

4/7 = 0.571428

5/7 = 0.714285

6/7 = 0.857142

So, anyone can ask me the decimal equivalent of a seventh, and to them, it looks like I'm calculating to six decimal places.

Percentages for other fractions

This isn't memorization, but it's a quick way to calculate percentages that most people don't seem to know. Say you want to know 5/6 and don't have it memorized. Most people know that's the same as 5÷6, and would punch that into a calculator if using a calculator, and if tasked with calculating it in their head, would probably try long division, which is possible, but there's an easier way. It's generally easier to divide something into 100 than into the numerator of the given fraction, so that's what I do. 100 ÷ 6 in my head is 16-2/3 without much difficulty, then I multiply that by 5 (the numerator), and get 83-1/3, or 83.333333%.

Sometimes in my job I have to use fractional equivalents of 1/12 (corresponding to a fractional part of a year, in months). The quarter, thirds and half-year fractional equivalents are easy. The intermediate values I know off the top of my head:

1 month = .0833333 year

2 months = .0166667

5 months = .4166667

7 months = .5833333 (easy = 0.5 + 1 month)

10 months = .8333333 (easy = 1 month x 10)

11 months = .9166667

I also have occasion to use 5/9 of a percent (.0055556) and 5/18 of percent (.0027778).

I realized that decades ago, the first time I manually multiplied 40 x 50 to do the conversion. Nobody I've talked to about this has realized that you can simply use 2000 as a factor. Again, they think I'm a math whiz when I quickly convert between hourly and yearly.

I've sometimes polled blackjack dealers on what they think fair earnings are for a dealer (wages + tips), either hourly or yearly. If they give it to me hourly then I used to convert to yearly, tell them the yearly amount, and compare it to other professions that pay that much. But then they'd think I'm a math genius and suspect me of counting cards. So now I compare without telling them the conversion.

About that, while I believe in tipping, I've found table games dealers to be quite entitled. One said $39 to $59 would be fair. That's more than the overwhelming majority of other jobs in the U.S., e.g.:

$23 paramedic

$25 paralegal

$30 school teacher

$32 electrician (journeyman)

$33 scientist

$34 medical sonographer

$35 accountant

$37 dental hygienist

$37 web developer

$39 scientist (chemist)

$40 architect

$40 college professor

$41 microbiologist

$41 occupational therapist

$43 nurse

$43 computer programmer

$48 veterinarian

$50 electrical engineer

$56 nuclear engineer

$57 nurse practitioner

$57 aerospace engieer

$60 judge

It's probably close enough for anything I'm building, given the "mark with chalk, cut with an axe" nature of the physical world.

As for Standard Deviation, I know not enough, especially as how it pertains to winning at card counting. But I can compare what card counters are supposed to be winning with what I'm winning, and it's just impossible at 34 SD. BTW, I lost $5K on my first 10K hands. I had to loosen my progressions up considerably to get ahead in the second 10K hands. I guess I'm supposed to multiply the number of hands played by 1.6 (the default number for some unknown reason) and the result is the expected profit for that point in time.

For people who use slightly more advanced math, it’s very useful to memorize the base 10 logarithms of 1 - 10. 1 and 10 are obviously 0 and 1, 2 is 0.3, 3 is 0.48 etc. You actually only need to memorize 2, 3, 5 and 7 because the other numbers build off of those (for instance, since 6 = 2 * 3 then log(6) is .3 +.48 = .78.

So if someone asks what’s the chance of flipping twenty consecutive heads, the answer is 1 in :

2^20 =~ 10^(.3 *20) = 10^6 = 1,000,000. Within 5% of exact answer of 1,048,576

To calculate the probability of eighteen consecutive yo’s it’s 1 in:

10^((.48 + .78) * 18). You don’t even need to be that careful because you’re often just trying to get the order of magnitude. In this case it’s 10^22…so remote that you know it didn’t happen. RIP Alan.

It’s also useful to know the approximate probabilities for 1,2,3,4,5 and 6 standard deviation events.

You should also know some basic metric like miles/Km, pounds/kg, F/C.

Yet another: one degree of latitude is about seventy miles. Similar for longitude unless you’re close to a Pole

Yeah, for 12 years I've been trying to teach my foreign-born family how to do these conversions in their head, but they're not interested in learning, probably because they know I'll do it for them.Quote:Ace2You should also know some basic metric like miles/Km, pounds/kg, F/C.

Quote:billryanThe only math most people need to memorize today is their PIN. Everything else is at our fingertips.

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PIN? Just about everything uses facial recognition now

Even US Customs (Global Entry). No passport or forms required to enter the country

Quote:MichaelBluejayI've also found that almost nobody knows this trick: Multiply hourly wage by 2000 to get yearly (or divide yearly by 2000 to get hourly). Because, of course, 40 hours week x 50 weeks/year = 2000. (If there's paid vacation for the other two weeks, estimate by dividing the yearly total by 3 then add 10% of that to the total.)

I realized that decades ago, the first time I manually multiplied 40 x 50 to do the conversion. Nobody I've talked to about this has realized that you can simply use 2000 as a factor. Again, they think I'm a math whiz when I quickly convert between hourly and yearly.

I've sometimes polled blackjack dealers on what they think fair earnings are for a dealer (wages + tips), either hourly or yearly. If they give it to me hourly then I used to convert to yearly, tell them the yearly amount, and compare it to other professions that pay that much. But then they'd think I'm a math genius and suspect me of counting cards. So now I compare without telling them the conversion.

About that, while I believe in tipping, I've found table games dealers to be quite entitled. One said $39 to $59 would be fair. That's more than the overwhelming majority of other jobs in the U.S., e.g.:

$23 paramedic

$25 paralegal

$30 school teacher

$32 electrician (journeyman)

$33 scientist

$34 medical sonographer

$35 accountant

$37 dental hygienist

$37 web developer

$39 scientist (chemist)

$40 architect

$40 college professor

$41 microbiologist

$41 occupational therapist

$43 nurse

$43 computer programmer

$48 veterinarian

$50 electrical engineer

$56 nuclear engineer

$57 nurse practitioner

$57 aerospace engieer

$60 judge

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I don’t know where you are getting your info from. I know a few veterinarians who all make well over $100 an hour.

Whenever I saw what anesthesiologists theoretically make on these type lists, it was usually around 50% of the actual figure. I would have been laughed at if I put an ad out for what the listed figure was.

25 years ago maybe

I generally get salary info from BLS.gov, sometimes from Salary.com or similar sources. I pulled the figures above a couple years ago, and BLS data is itself a year or two old, but a couple years ago is also when I surveyed the dealer who said $39-59 would be fair earnings for a dealer.Quote:SOOPOOI don’t know where you are getting your info from.

Anesthesiologist*: $100 • $210

Veterinarian: $48 • $52

College Professor†: $40 • $54

Electrical Engineer: $31 • $61

* BLS.gov lumps all physicians together, this figure is not anesthetist-specific.

† Mathematics

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Based on your feedback, it seems that BLS significantly underestimates real-world salaries. I'll use other sources from here on out.