Monday 30 January 2017

S8.289 - Gene Us

Well, this was bound to happen, right? I actually spent time over a week ago, playing around with derivative graphs, wondering about gender roles. This is uncharted territory.


QSINE: How bad is it out there?
QLYN: Before word spread, we lost QT, QArcSin, QElly, Root, Rhys and Tangent.
QSINE: Can the virus be spread by contact?
QLYN: Maybe by static shock? We’ve no evidence yet.
QLYN: We’ve quarantined all who were affected. Arctan is tending to them.
RHYS?: I told you, I’m Rhys! x^-1!
ARCTAN: Your gender reassignment is nowhere on record.


  1. does gender correspond to a mathematical trait?

    1. No specific gender matches mathematics concepts, but inverses were designed to be the opposite gender of their original functions. As XX is female (chromosomes), it made some sense for X^2 (Para) to be female and work from there. Related, XY is male, and the reciprocal (Reci/Rhys) is it's own inverse, so I went with male for Y=1/X (aka XY=1). But Y=-1/X^2 is no longer it's own inverse, so I had this choice to make. And thus this is the direction I went.

      The webcomic relaunch had some thought of making Lyn (also a self-inverse) gender neutral, even though all polynomials have been female. That's possibly the closest I've come to math trait matching (self-inverse = gender neutral); there is no new Rhys/Reci partly for that reason. But aside from a throwaway line in Comic #45 ("Out Line") it hasn't come up. Random aside, I don't know which gender (if any) that Gamma (the factorial function) is, if anyone else has thoughts. Yeah, I've spent far too much time thinking about this.

      Thanks for reading and asking! Sorry if that got rambly.