The term “Broken Math”, sometimes stylized with a trademark identifier (superscript “TM”), was created in December 2014 in conjunction with the progression of the “Chasing M’lady” Tumblr blog. However, the concept behind it – using the laws of math and/or physics in an unconventional or unrealistic way in order to produce questionable results. Sometimes, these results prove to be correct (see: many of my college exams); sometimes, they are marginally correct, or correct enough to be satisfactory estimates of reality. The third possibility is that results generated from Broken Math are completely incorrect (often in a humorous way, intended or not). This happens more often than not.
This idea of doing mathematics of questionable validity did not have a set identifying name until December 5th, 2014. Memes relating to neckbeards were entirely in vogue, and the latest discovery I had made in regards to that was the “Chasing M’lady” Tumblr blog, located at chasingmlady.tumblr.com. As I read through the history of the blog, I discovered many posts which stood out in comedic value, including one which was originally posted as question/suggestion by now-deactivated Tumblr user mrredox:
“Have you ever thought of wearing two fedoras stacked on top of one another? You are constantly tipping your fedoras well enough to get fine women. I think if you master the art of 2, you will see a 100% increase in your attention from the fairer sex.”
“Chasing M’lady” responds with the following statement, in addition to a screenshot meant to emulate a legitimate mathematical proof written using Microsoft Word equations:
Dear sir, I had never considered such possibilities! I assumed that only one was needed to show my graceful tipping techniques, but mathematically, I could attract attention from every single member of the double X chromosome party. […] I think I’m going to go out and purchase all the fedoras at my local high end clothing shop :-^) Thank you for your enlightenment mrredox!
As I had been doing often during my freshman year, I decided to print out a page about “methods of exiting the friendzone”. The first method was related to dakimakuras, while the second was instead a reference to this Tumblr post.
Method 2: Wear Infinite Fedoras! Broken Math 100% Real Math proves that using the power of Limits, by wearing infinity fedoras, you will attract all women!
Clearly, the fallacy of this method is that there exists a point of diminishing returns, where at some point, your attractiveness will achieve a maximum where no further women will find you attractive.
Since then, Broken Math has been used on many of my engineering exams in order to achieve at least some partial credit – or in some cases, actually end up getting the answer correct.
Broken Math is also rooted in the notorious Manuelium Problems, which deserve to have an entry entirely of their own.
Edit as of April 2017: don’t use broken math. it hurts.