First, we assume a spherical cow..

Behavioral and Brain Sciences 24 (4):656-657 (2001)
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Abstract

There is an old joke about a theoretical physicist who was charged with figuring out how to increase the milk production of cows. Although many farmers, biologists, and psychologists had tried and failed to solve the problem before him, the physicist had no trouble coming up with a solution on the spot. “ First,” he began, “we assume a spherical cow... ” [Tenenbaum & Griffiths]

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