Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Probability

Dots! Their one of my favorite candies to eat!! As I was chewing the colorful assortment of fruit flavored gummy treats, I thought about my math homework. We are studying combinations, permutations, and probability. So here's a practical example of a mathematical concept happening right in my mouth.

In the box I Dots that I was eating, I estimated there were: 25 orange dots, 10 yellow dots, 12 green dots, 20 red dots, 10 pink dots for a total of 77 dots. What are my chances of getting two pink dots (one of my favorite flavors—watermelon)? The answer: 90 out of 5,852 times I would most likely have to draw from the box before I get exactly two pink dots and not a combination of other colors or pink and another color. Boy…I better get busy eating!

Other facts:

  • The chances of someone having the same birthday as you is 89% if you were around 39 other people. You are almost guaranteed to find someone with the same birthday as you if you were near 50 people (97%) to 70 people (99.9916%).
  • When tossing two dies, your best probability is getting the sum of 7 (6 out of 36) and your chances of getting the numbers 6, 5, 4, 3, 2 or 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 decreases the farther you get away from 7? 2 and 12 have the lowest probability because you have to roll (1,1) or (6,6).
  • From a deck of 52 cards a hand of 5 cards is dealt. How many different hands are possible? Hint: It's more than the thousands--it's in the millions (2,598,960 to be exact).

Go ahead, take a guess at the probability of getting a royal flush!! I will post the answer as soon as I figure it out. But...if I hae to take a stab...I'd say the event of that happening is...r-a-r-e. Yep, siree Bob.

Alright. I did my homework and my math teacher should be proud of me. And to think it all started with a bunch of chewy, colorful, yummy dots!! (oh shoot. they're all gone!)

One a side note: what's the probability of having a dispute with a receptionist at a salon in a mall, and two days later passing her on the stairs of a building one floor away from where I work?! What are the chances of all the people that work in Vegas, of all the students and employees on campus, all the minutes and seconds in a day--her and I cross paths AGAIN in the stairwell between the 3rd and 4th floor of my building. Darn! It was my chance to punch her out and NO ONE could've witnessed the event.

7/14/2005---by the way...I got an "A" in the course!

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