I'm afraid you're crediting me with far more intelligence than I actually have. Thanks to Google, I discovered that you're right, both 2.49692 and 3.29291 have some sort of relevance in the world of Phylogenetically Inferred Groups, which describe how proteins are categorised or something. However, this is not why I wrote those numbers.
I'd like to thank you though, Beckie...clearly my profile needs to be updated because it makes me look like some sort of nerd who posts a microbiology in-joke as the title of his blog. I'm obviously not a nerd, though, because the numbers refer to a meaningless in-joke between me and one of my best mates...
Jeebus, who am I kidding.
The background to the numbers is:
About 15 years ago, when I was at secondary school (translation: high school) I was well known among my friends as being a bit of a random spastic. People used to say I had Tourette's*, and I suppose I kind of played on this by doing stupid stuff and jittering alot. Anyway, one of the things I used to do, besides squawking and having the occasional spasm, was shout out random numbers. For some reason, the number 2.49692 was born, and it stuck in both Paul's and my head. It became a recurring "joke" with us, completely unfunny to everyone except he and I; we would totally crack up though.
After a while, 3.29291 was added to the agenda, and these numbers continued to be a point of hilarity for us all the way through university. I even got my ex, Evelyn, to memorise the numbers at one point, though she has undoubtedly forgotten them by now.
I don't know why we find them amusing. Part of it is probably because everyone wonders how the hell we remember two such seemingly random numbers. (They probably also wonder why we bother, but let's not worry about that...)So, long, pointless ramble summarised: They are numbers that Paul and I laughed at as kids, and they still make us laugh as adults**. So much so, in fact, that both of us have referenced the numbers in our blogs.
I can only apologise (and chuckle) for giving you the illusion that I was a scientific genius.
*apologies to those people who actually do have Tourette's.
**I use the term "adults" loosely, in that we are over the age of 18.