Dark Energy Weirdness

OK, has anybody here heard of Tori Amos? She’s apparently a friend of Neil Gaiman, which is cool, but her Wikipedia article doesn’t cite enough sources for me to figure out what she’s about. Apparently, she’s releasing a music album entitled American Doll Posse; I’d tell you more, but her website requires “the latest flash player.” I did manage to find out that for this album, Amos created five alter egos, four of which are based on Greek goddesses with the fifth being Amos herself. (For the record, the goddesses are Artemis, Persephone, Athena and Aphrodite.) Eris, the patron goddess of the Internet, inspired somebody to write the following on Wikipedia:

On March 23, 2007, toriamos.com released an audio clip from Amos, stating that each of the characters from American Doll Posse has her own online blog. She urged fans to find them, saying “Happy hunting.”

Well, I know where at least one of them is. Pip (Athena) maintains a LiveJournal, on which she writes (this being the point of my odd little story),

Dark Energy. It can be found in the Observable Universe. Found in ratios of 75% more than any other substance. Dark Energy. It can be found in religious extremists, in cheerleaders.

I’m not so sure what “ratios of 75% more than any other substance” means, exactly, and in fact it’s a more awkward statement than the simple truth: roughly 75% of everything is dark energy. Still, kudos for effort and intent.

4 thoughts on “Dark Energy Weirdness”

  1. You don’t know Tori Amos? Gee, well, think back to when they first invented the label “alternative” and she was IT, for chicks. Pre-Lilith Fair, and much better and less folky. Also she’s actually a piano prodigy, and plays the harpsichord on some albums, which is pretty awesome. Anyway, I really liked her when I was about 14 or 15, which sounds negative, but she’s actually quite good if a little girly for my tastes now. And I haven’t heard any of her new stuff in years, so.

    But the statement is…well the third sentence is almost ungrammatical for me. I’m not sure what she’s trying to say mathematically. Maybe I should note that most of her lyrics are extremely opaque?

  2. Yeah, several of my high-school friends were Tori fans. I liked what I heard, in the incidental course of things, but I never became a fan, and it seems nobody I know these days has her more recent albums on their hard drives.

    Let’s see. If fi is the fraction of the Universe composed of the i-th substance, then we know that all the fractions sum to 100%:

    [tex]\sum_i f_i = 1.[/tex]

    This is just saying that all the pieces of the pie together add up to make the whole pie. A ratio “75% more than any other” must mean that some fi, call it f0, is 75% larger than the next largest fraction, which we might as well call f1.

    [tex]f_0 = 1.75 f_1.[/tex]

    If there are only two kinds of stuff, you can combine these two equations and show that

    [tex]f_0 = \frac{7}{11},\ f_1 = \frac{4}{11}.[/tex]

    This is a whole lot more complicated than saying dark energy is just 75% the total!

  3. My introduction to Tori Amos was on the soundtrack to the Robin Williams film, Toys. She performed, at least, the Happy Workers song there… obscure, maybe, but it made an impression on my young mind :P I have many friends who admire her greatly, but I haven’t found her music particularly suited to my tastes.

    It would seem that her Athena-based character isn’t the best mathematician… but something about Athena discussing astrophysics is pretty hilarious. Tori gets 5 points!

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