Deep math of the folded pizza slice



Or, you could eat your pizza with a knife and fork, like a civilized person. :expressionless:


I’m so totally going to use that example.

That’s fighting words.


A few years back two of my colleagues won an award for a paper calculating the shape of the largest taco you could make from a given round tortilla:

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Nothing inspires violent confrontation like math and pizza.

Case in point: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles


I’ll have the Snickers bar for dessert, please.


Foods like pizza go WAY back. The Romans had something like it, served at stands on the street. The way that folks wandering the streets 2000 years ago ate oiled, spicy flat bread was almost certainly closer to the way busy New Yorkers fold and nibble than this fancy fork and knife thing.


Mmmmmm… Placenta. (No, that that sort. The pastry variety.)


Full disclosure - I didn’t read the linked article, but…

This seems to have been chased a bit too far down the rabbit hole. For Gaussian curvature to apply fully, I’m pretty sure the pizza slice would have to be totally inelastic - incapable of being at all stretched. This isn’t the case, so the pizza does flex ever so slightly.

A more useful way to put this would be that folding the pizza increases it’s area moment of inertia, thereby increasing it’s longitudinal stiffness and decreasing all local stresses to below yield values. That’s probably somehow related to Gaussian curvature, but I haven’t thought through just how yet.

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mathematical principal

sigh I think the word is ‘principle’. And you call yourself a writer Just a heads up. :slight_smile:

and lo, as the great age approached the leadership of the houses of learning were turned over to the equations.

only here you can find such a stupid article! proud to be an italian pizza eater (without math but with mouth)

@mtdna don’t attack the person, attack the argument. @7lions is not wrong (at least in the first paragraph; I’m not qualified enough to comment on the second). The article does implicitly assume that the pizza doesn’t stretch, which seems dubious, given that it is of soft doughy construction.

More generally, Gaussian curvature is about idealized surfaces, and it isn’t obvious that its results should apply without qualifications to real life objects – which, unlike idealized surfaces have a thickness, internal structure and, as we know, a fucking mind of their own.

I take it you didn’t read past the first line of 7lions’ post?

Not sure what you mean–the article was quite enlightening, at least once they get past pizza into actual physics. Your hostility may say more about you than about the article.


That’s very cool. An actual ancient recipe, detailed enough to follow.

Huh, that is actually pizza-ish. Interesting. I’ve occasionally seen claims that the Romans invented hamburgers, also sold at street stands, but the recipe provided as documentation turns out out to be a sort of large meatball made with wine, bread crumbs, and spices. It sounds tasty, but I’m not sure where anyone gets “hamburger” out of it.

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The article doesn’t implicitly assume it. It assumes explicitly - literally in bold face - that you don’t “…stretch, shrink, or tear [the Gaussian curvature]”. Maybe you should join 7lions in the RTFA club.