Tuesday, September 06, 2022

A Sideways Triangle is a Triangle

Today's NY Times Mini Crossword has the clue:
Button with a sideways triangle
Ihe answer is "Play", of course, but what do they think that a triangle is?

Schools teach triangles, starting in kindergarten, and I am pretty sure no one teaches that a triangle has to be oriented in a particular way in order to qualify as a triangle.

1 comment:

CFT said...

I think you are fussing. I would have worded the clue a bit different "A triangle pointed sideways" which is fine, since graphical arrows (a triangle with a line trailing a flat side behind it) have been used since the time of ancient Rome and before to denote direction... everyone also commonly knows which way an arrow or spear travels.

Physical triangle-like shaped things (natural and man-made) in our world generally point upwards.. the pyramids, the roofs on houses, the simple physics of how things pile up like sand, rock and salt, and mountains due to their usual shape. This is due to the structural stability a triangle affords in gravity and because upward pointing triangles are more efficient at shedding rain water.