Aristotle's wheel paradox is a paradox from the Greek work Mechanica traditionally attributed to Aristotle. There are two wheels, one within the other, whose rims take the shape of two circles with different diameters. The wheels roll without slipping for a full revolution. The paths traced by the bottoms of the wheels are straight lines, which are apparently the wheels' circumferences. But the two lines have the same length, so the wheels must have the same circumference, contradicting the assumption that they have different sizes: a paradox.
From Wolfram Mathworld:
A paradox mentioned in the Greek work Mechanica, dubiously attributed to Aristotle. Consider the above diagram depicting a wheel consisting of two concentric circles of different diameters (a wheel within a wheel). There is a 1:1 correspondence of points on the large circle with points on the small circle, so the wheel should travel the same distance regardless of whether it is rolled from left to right on the top straight line or on the bottom one. this seems to imply that the two circumferences of different sized circles are equal, which is impossible.
Do you think you know the Explanation?
I'll tell you in a sec, but see if you can figure it out first.
Just a second. You have a second, don't you? Ok, Ok, fifteen seconds. Thirty seconds? Naw, too much thinking.
No cheating now ...
... here it comes ...
The fallacy is the assumption that the smaller wheel indeed traces out its circumference, without ensuring that it, too, rolls without slipping on a fixed surface. In fact, it is impossible for both wheels to perform such motion. Physically, if two joined concentric wheels with different radii were rolled along parallel lines then at least one would slip; if a system of cogs was used to prevent slippage then the wheels would jam. A modern approximation of such an experiment is often performed by car drivers who park too close to a curb. The car's outer tire rolls without slipping on the road surface while the inner hubcap both rolls and slips across the curb; the slipping is evidenced by a screeching noise.
From Wolfram Wathworld:
The fallacy lies in the assumption that a one-to-one correspondence of points means that two curves must have the same length. In fact, the cardinalities of points in a line segment of any length (or even an infinite line, a plane, a three-dimensional space, or an infinite dimensional Euclidean space) are all the same: (the cardinality of the continuum), so the points of any of these can be put in a one-to-one correspondence with those of any other.
From Paul Simon:
Slip sliding away .... you know the nearer your destination the more likely you're slip sliding away ....