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A friendly game - August 22, 2010
Rating: 4.6/5 (126 votes cast)
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Spiked Math Comic - A friendly game

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Channeling Fermat?

The guy to the right seems o be a fool, it should be split up 66% to 33%, since the only possible outcomes are HH, HT and T. The person to get 3 points first is the winner of the match. So if the next throw is T, the game is over and the left guy won.

Maybe you should change the rules, the one who gets 3 of 5 throws wins ;)

Also, what would happen if the coin fell on neither tails nor heads? Giant black hole that destroys the universe or ice cream for everyone?

Nops, you're wrong. You see, these three possibilities aren't equaly likely, thus you can't simply count them, and divided the probability in equal amounts.

-There is half a chance they will get T, and left guy wins.
-A quarter of times they would get HT, and left still wins.
-Another quarter they will get HH, and right wins.

So, given the situation, the answer is correct. Left wins 75% of the time, and left wins 25%! The funny thing is that this is counter-intuitive to the actual score, where left guy seems to have a advantage of only 2:1, while, in probability terms, the advantage is 3:1.

Ok, I didn't think about that one :)

But still, the explanation needs to be changed a bit.

good point
btw:i vote for ice-cream for everyone

oh wait never mind, because of the three results tt, th, and t, t is twice as likely so the odds are still 75/25

In the time he needs to explain his theory, he could have tossed the coin twice again :)

Nice schroedingification, nevertheless :)

(Sarah = cat)

LOL... actually the ratio is still 50-50 :P honestly and practically speaking. Mathematically, I appreciate the effort :D

??? How is it 50:50 ?

Are you saying that because or A gets the girl, or B gets the girl? Once again, you're assuming equally probable eventes.

Of course this wouldn't be the case, if, for instace, myself and Taylor Lautner had a dispute over a girl. I'm estimating my chances, with optimism, in 1:100 =(

In which case, the toss game wouldn't make much sense anyway... or, Taylor would be like "Yeah well, you won the tosses, good for you... Hey Sarah! how 'bout dinner?"

Gives the right for the right person to argue for his right... right?? whatever

I always love reading the comments on stat/prob related things...
they entertain me...

Ah, but now you are being recursive (and self-referential, but I regress).

It should be split 50/50. Either the guy on the left wins or he doesn't, so it's a 50% chance.

I'll play you Blackjack, me as the house. Either you win or not, so you should come out ahead, right? However, somehow casinos make money on the game...

That's because casinos use fairy magic! :)

I don't know too many accountants who use that sort of math--and it works for them...

Come on, Michael, now you are just teasing me... ¬¬

Either there is an elephant in my living room or there isn't... therefore, the odds of there being an elephant in my living room are 50/50, and so I can expect to see an elephant in my living room half the time...

I love bad math. It's hilarious.

I think you need to change the explanation from "divide Sarah by the ration" to "divide Sarah by the ratio". A common typo everyone makes all the time ;) Its like my fingers just can't help pressing that 'N' key everytime TIO and precede it.

Do it like Solomon, cut her head of, left get her body. Even if it's a 1:7 ratio

Reminds me of a joke. Many years ago when people had arranged marriages two young men were sent from one town to marry two girls from another. On the way one dies. When the survivingan arrives the mothers of the daughters are distraught. Which of their daughters will get to marry the young man. They take the case to the town arbiter. After some deliberation he says that they should cit the man in half and give one piece to each girl. The first mother says no the other can have him. The second says "cut him in half!"
The arbiter says aha! That is the true mother in law

Heh... no time for flipping a coin? :D funny

5% of all car accidents, alcohol is involved.
So 95% of all car accidents, alcohol is NOT involved.
=> Let's drink all, it's much safer! :-)

These comments talking about the left guy needing one more T to win don't make sense anymore. In the current version, the left guy is H. Did the original version of the comic have the heads/tails sides reversed?

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Hello my fellow math geeks. My name is Mike and I am the creator of Spiked Math Comics, a math comic dedicated to humor, educate and entertain the geek in you. Beware though, there might be some math involved :D

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