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Proof Techniques


Methods for getting people to believe you (as good as, if not better than, proof). A collection of proof techniques that will prove invaluable to both mathematicians and members of the general public.


PROOF TECHNIQUE #1 - 'Proof By Induction'


1. Obtain a large power transformer.

2. Find someone who does not believe your theorem.

3. Get this person to hold the terminals on the HV side of the transformer.

4. Apply 25000 volts AC to the LV side of the transformer.

5. Repeat step (4) until they agree with the theorem.


PROOF TECHNIQUE #2 - 'Proof By Contradiction'


1. State your theorem.

2. Wait for someone to disagree.

3. Contradict them.




1. Summon all your inferiors for a departmental meeting.

2. Present your theorem.

3. Fire those who disagree.


PROOF TECHNIQUE #4 - The Famous Water Proof


1. State your theorem.

2. Wait for someone to disagree.

3. Drown them.

NB. This is closely related to the 'bullet' proof, but is easier to make look like an accident.



PROOF TECHNIQUE #5 - Idiot Proof


1. State your theorem.

2. Write exhaustive documentation with glossy colour pictures and arrows about which bit goes where.

3. Challenge anyone to not understand it.


PROOF TECHNIQUE #6 - Child Proof


1. State your theorem.

2. Encapsulate it in epoxy and shape it into an ellipsoid.

3. Put it in a jar with all the other proofs (one with one of those Press-to-Open lids).

4. Give it to a professor and challenge him to open it.


PROOF TECHNIQUE #7 - Rabbit Proof


1. Generate theorems at an altogether startling rate, much faster than anybody is able to refute them. Use up every body else's paper. Run away at the slightest sign of danger.

2. Leave any crap in small, easily identified piles, in prominent places where you no longer are, and it cannot in fact be proven that you ever were.




1. State your theorem.

2. Invite colleagues to comment.

3. If they don't agree, exclaim loudly, "You Fools!"



Other Proofs you might enjoy

Maths Labs Funny Proofs

iInvalid Proofs form the School of Mathematics

© Cathy Brown 1998 - 2019