Ross Churchley, Graph Theory Grad Student, writes:
A little while ago, I did some sleuthing to find out the Erdös number of Brian May, astrophysicist and guitarist from Queen. My travels led me to Timeblimp, who threw together three measures of professional collaboration to make a rather fun parlour game. Assuming that the people in your parlour are three kinds of nerds and enjoy long and complicated internet scavenger hunts. Which I am and I do.
The game is to find a well-known person who has published academically, released a song, and been involved in a movie or TV show. Then, you play three versions of Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon: find a series of movies to connect them to prolific actor Kevin Bacon, a series of coauthored papers to connect them to the eccentric mathematician Paul Erdös, and a series of musical collaborations to get to Black Sabbath. Add up all the links and you get the Erdös-Bacon-Sabbath number.
To even have an Erdös-Bacon-Sabbath number puts you in quite an exclusive club. Only four people–Richard Feynman, Natalie Portman, Stephen Hawking, and the aforementioned Brian May–are known to be on the list. Until now. In this post, I’m going to throw out a few more potential names and put in the legwork to add a few to list of People at the Center of the Universe.
Read the full post here: http://www.rosschurchley.com/2012/who-else-has-an-erdos-bacon-sabbath-number/