Re: Mathematical hat tricks

From: Tony Berkman (
Date: Wed Apr 11 2001 - 22:52:03 PDT

Reminds me of a game my statistics prof. brought up back at CMU:

Suppose someone says to you that you can write down numbers off of the top
of your head on a bunch of index cards - 100 cards, 1000 cards, 1,000,000
cards there is no limit - you can write down different numbers on as many
cards as pleases you. Once the numbers have been written down the person
will shuffle the cards and begin to turn them over, one by one. If the
person can stop just when they get to the highest number written down and
say, "this is the highest number!!!" they win. If they pass the highest
number by, they lose. What are the odds that they win?.... Well, with a
perfect strategy the exact odds depend upon the number of cards, but they
are never worse than 1 in 4. Most of the students in the class would have
guessed 1 in 100 or 1 in 1000, etc. but in reality the odds are much better
with the right strategy....


At 02:13 PM 4/11/01, Rodent of Unusual Size wrote:
>My brain Hertz..

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