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John Venn Birthday

Saturday, August 4, 2018

Celebrating the birthday of John Venn, creator of the Venn diagram in 1880

Posted: 05 Aug 2016 02:38 PM PDT

johnvennBritish mathematician John Venn was born on August 4, 1834, so yesterday marked the 182nd anniversary of his birth in Hull, England. John Venn is most known for creating and introducing the Venn diagram in around 1880, which has been used in the fields of set theory, probability, logic, statistics, and computer science according to his Wikipedia page. (Note: Now that Wikipedia is the starting “go-to” reference website for finding information on just about anybody, like John Venn, or on any topic, like the Venn diagram, it’s amusing to reflect back about ten years ago when so many academics were so skeptical of Wikipedia as a reference source. For some background, see Tyler Cowen’s blog post “In Defense of Wikipedia” in 2005 when Wikipedia was coming under increasing criticism.)


Sorry that I’m a day late, but I wanted to belatedly recognize the anniversary of John Venn’s birthday yesterday with a dozen of my Venn diagrams, most of which have appeared previously on CD or Twitter. Thanks to John Venn, I now have a part-time job as a Venn diagram graphic artist/specialist! I’d also like to recognize Warren Meyer of the Coyote Blog as the creator of the original Venn diagram applied to economics (or at least it was the first one I saw, see diagram above).

In honor of John Venn’s birthday, here are a dozen Venn diagrams below (and you view 12 more at this CD post).

1. Venn Diagram I (above) on Paul Krugman and his changing position on the minimum wage.


2. Venn Diagram II (above) on conservatives who support family values and the family-destroying Drug War.


3. Venn Diagram III (above). Low prices are a good thing and make us better off, right? We should embrace an overvalued dollar and cheap foreign goods, not complain about it.


4. Venn Diagram IV (above). A tax on plastic bags significantly reduces their use, but a $15 minimum wage won’t negatively affect employment?


5. Venn Diagram V (above). Higher prices hurt the poor, are you concerned about them or not?


6. Venn Diagram VI (above). The very selective concern about equal treatment and the enforcement of civil rights legislation.

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