Mathematicaster – a mathematician whose interior angle exceeds their compass
According to Robertson's Words for a Modern Age: A Dictionary of Latin and Greek Words used in Modern English Vocabulary, a favorite online resource for logophiles at http://www.wordinfo.info/, a mathematicaster is someone who pretends to know more mathematics than they really do.
Now this is a term just begging for quips. Here’s my shot …
It’s my experience that mathematicasters sit on both sides of the table at orals.
In addition to the common geometric definition of an angle (space between intersecting lines) the term angle can be used as a noun for a point of view, a slant, or a personal take on a matter.
In this sense, a mathematician’s “interior angle” would be their personal (interior) point of view (angle) of their mathematical capabilities.
And in addition to the geometric definition of a compass (tool for drawing circles) the term compass can be used as a noun for someone’s limit of understanding or capability.
So a mathematicaster is someone whose personal opinion of their mathematical capabilities (their “interior angle”) exceeds the true limit of their capabilities (their “compass”).