1374: "Urn"

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1374: "Urn"

Postby bachaddict » Wed May 28, 2014 7:58 am UTC

Image

Alt-text: Can this PLEASE be drawing with replacement?

An unexpected tURN of events :lol:
I wonder what BHG would have pulled out of his imaginary urn.
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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby keithl » Wed May 28, 2014 8:06 am UTC

And somewhere out there are three unhappy Native Americans, four equally unhappy African Americans, and one African American who almost got away in time. Why is your grandfather mutilating these innocent men, and why does he put his cigar ashes in the same container as his gruesome trophies?

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby Envelope Generator » Wed May 28, 2014 8:30 am UTC

A puzzling Question but not beyond all Conjecture.
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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby Eebster the Great » Wed May 28, 2014 9:57 am UTC

I didn't find the comic very funny at all, but the alt text was good. Drawing with replacement. Heh.

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby da Doctah » Wed May 28, 2014 10:07 am UTC

It was always an urn, wasn't it? Would have worked just as well with a cloth bag, but no, somebody had to turn statistics into a pottery recital.

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby orthogon » Wed May 28, 2014 10:17 am UTC

What's an imaginary urn?
Last edited by orthogon on Wed May 28, 2014 10:27 am UTC, edited 2 times in total.
xtifr wrote:... and orthogon merely sounds undecided.

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby Essah » Wed May 28, 2014 10:25 am UTC

orthogon wrote:What's an imaginary urn?


an urn that you imagine?

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby brenok » Wed May 28, 2014 10:27 am UTC

orthogon wrote:What's an imaginary urn?

Some urns that i did.

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby orthogon » Wed May 28, 2014 10:28 am UTC

Are we talking about an imaginary Greek urn? What's an imaginary Greek urn?

[De-edited from my original post]
xtifr wrote:... and orthogon merely sounds undecided.

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby PinkShinyRose » Wed May 28, 2014 10:34 am UTC

I'm glad they use vases for statistics here.

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby philipquarles » Wed May 28, 2014 10:41 am UTC

Most people think that William Gosset published under the pen name "student" to protect Guinness trade secrets. However, recent evidence indicates that he may have been trying to conceal his identity to avoid being linked to several violent assaults. Also, although he spent most of his professional life in Ireland, he was in England at or around the time of the Jack the Ripper murders.

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby Farabor » Wed May 28, 2014 10:50 am UTC

orthogon wrote:What's an imaginary urn?


A real urn times i, of course.

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby eviloatmeal » Wed May 28, 2014 11:04 am UTC

That urn is the world record.
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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby snowyowl » Wed May 28, 2014 11:41 am UTC

Imagine that you're drawing at random from an urn containing fifteen balls - six red and nine black. You're drawing without replacement. At any time, you may guess what colour the next ball you draw will be. If you guess correctly, you win. If you guess incorrectly, you lose.

What strategy maximises your chances of winning?
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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby cellocgw » Wed May 28, 2014 11:53 am UTC

Farabor wrote:
orthogon wrote:What's an imaginary urn?


A real urn times i, of course.


i*urn ?

No I'm not telling you how much I earn :twisted:

Is this Randall's most urn-est attempt yet?
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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby cellocgw » Wed May 28, 2014 11:56 am UTC

snowyowl wrote:Imagine that you're drawing at random from an urn containing fifteen balls - six red and nine black. You're drawing without replacement. At any time, you may guess what colour the next ball you draw will be. If you guess correctly, you win. If you guess incorrectly, you lose.

What strategy maximises your chances of winning?


What a strange game. The only way to win is not to play.

OK, ok, I'll bite. According to your rules, I only guess when I want to. In that case, I guess when the first of these three possbilities occurs: 1) there's only one ball left, 2) I've drawn 6 red, 3) I've drawn 9 black.
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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby Eebster the Great » Wed May 28, 2014 12:06 pm UTC

snowyowl wrote:Imagine that you're drawing at random from an urn containing fifteen balls - six red and nine black. You're drawing without replacement. At any time, you may guess what colour the next ball you draw will be. If you guess correctly, you win. If you guess incorrectly, you lose.

What strategy maximises your chances of winning?

If by "maximize your chances of winning" you mean have the highest winning percentage, then of course you wait until the last ball to guess. If you mean "maximize the number of times you win," then of course you guess every time that you will pick whichever color there are more of left. I'm not sure what else you could mean.

But I will pose a similar problem. Imagine that you're drawing at random from an urn containing fifteen balls—six red and nine black. You're drawing without replacement. Each time before you pick, you may guess that you will pick a red ball, guess that you will pick a black ball, or choose not to guess. If you do not guess, the game continues and you draw another ball. If you guess correctly, you get one point and continue to draw. If you guess incorrectly or run out of balls, the game ends.

What strategy maximizes your expected score at the end of the game?

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby Lenoxus » Wed May 28, 2014 12:16 pm UTC

EDIT: It looks like a more-correct version of the problem has been posted.

Meanwhile… how does she know the ashes are her grandfather's? :?

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby snowyowl » Wed May 28, 2014 12:30 pm UTC

Eebster the Great wrote:
snowyowl wrote:Imagine that you're drawing at random from an urn containing fifteen balls - six red and nine black. You're drawing without replacement. At any time, you may guess what colour the next ball you draw will be. If you guess correctly, you win. If you guess incorrectly, you lose.

What strategy maximises your chances of winning?

If by "maximize your chances of winning" you mean have the highest winning percentage, then of course you wait until the last ball to guess. If you mean "maximize the number of times you win," then of course you guess every time that you will pick whichever color there are more of left. I'm not sure what else you could mean.

But I will pose a similar problem. Imagine that you're drawing at random from an urn containing fifteen balls—six red and nine black. You're drawing without replacement. Each time before you pick, you may guess that you will pick a red ball, guess that you will pick a black ball, or choose not to guess. If you do not guess, the game continues and you draw another ball. If you guess correctly, you get one point and continue to draw. If you guess incorrectly or run out of balls, the game ends.

What strategy maximizes your expected score at the end of the game?

Ah, my mistake: I'd forgotten part of the problem. What I meant to say was that you can only choose to guess that the ball is red, or choose not to guess at all. So, if there are only black balls left, then you have zero chance of winning.

But never mind that now, you've got a better problem anyway.
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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby orthogon » Wed May 28, 2014 1:06 pm UTC

cellocgw wrote:
Farabor wrote:
orthogon wrote:What's an imaginary urn?


A real urn times i, of course.


i*urn ?

No I'm not telling you how much I earn :twisted:

Is this Randall's most urn-est attempt yet?

Some commendable efforts, especially since nobody seems to know the original joke (perhaps my compatriots are on holiday?). Apparently due to Morecambe and Wise, though I can't find the actual sketch on Youtube, it goes something like:

"What's a Greek urn?" "About ten bob a week"

The unit of currency and the amount of the estimated wage indicate just how old the joke is, even taking into account Greece's recent economic woes. (10 bob=10 shillings = £0.50; Decimal currency was introduced in 1971 but shilling pieces, worth 5p "in the new money", remained in circulation, and "bob" remained in spoken use, for a decade or more. Interestingly the phrase "in the new money" has proved to have even greater staying power, though these days it tends to be used ironically, rather in the same way as xkcders might refer to "the internets".)

On that basis, it should probably be "What's an imaginary Greek urn?" "About 10i bob a week", though I'm open to suggested improvements.
xtifr wrote:... and orthogon merely sounds undecided.

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby ThemePark » Wed May 28, 2014 1:15 pm UTC

cellocgw wrote:
Farabor wrote:
orthogon wrote:What's an imaginary urn?


A real urn times i, of course.


i*urn ?

No I'm not telling you how much I earn :twisted:

Is this Randall's most urn-est attempt yet?

I yearn for an urn.
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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby Eebster the Great » Wed May 28, 2014 1:51 pm UTC

snowyowl wrote:
Eebster the Great wrote:
snowyowl wrote:Imagine that you're drawing at random from an urn containing fifteen balls - six red and nine black. You're drawing without replacement. At any time, you may guess what colour the next ball you draw will be. If you guess correctly, you win. If you guess incorrectly, you lose.

What strategy maximises your chances of winning?

If by "maximize your chances of winning" you mean have the highest winning percentage, then of course you wait until the last ball to guess. If you mean "maximize the number of times you win," then of course you guess every time that you will pick whichever color there are more of left. I'm not sure what else you could mean.

Ah, my mistake: I'd forgotten part of the problem. What I meant to say was that you can only choose to guess that the ball is red, or choose not to guess at all. So, if there are only black balls left, then you have zero chance of winning.

In that case I'm not sure you can beat the strategy of guessing before your first pick.

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby ctdonath » Wed May 28, 2014 1:55 pm UTC

I'm reading Divergent now. The "imaginary urn" exercise would fit in perfectly with the fear simulations depicted in the current chapter.

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby HES » Wed May 28, 2014 2:21 pm UTC

Why are there balls in an urn? The I've only ever encountered it as balls/counters/whatever in a bag.
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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby Eebster the Great » Wed May 28, 2014 2:24 pm UTC

HES wrote:Why are there balls in an urn? The I've only ever encountered it as balls/counters/whatever in a bag.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Urn_problem

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby PolakoVoador » Wed May 28, 2014 2:25 pm UTC

PinkShinyRose wrote:I'm glad they use vases for statistics here.


Over here we use boxes. I think it makes more sense.

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby Jackpot777 » Wed May 28, 2014 2:32 pm UTC

orthogon wrote:Are we talking about an imaginary Greek urn? What's an imaginary Greek urn?

[De-edited from my original post]


At least €683.76 per month in 12 payments, €586 per month in 14 payments.

Sorry... I meant to say: "about 10,000 drachma a day."

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby Jackpot777 » Wed May 28, 2014 2:34 pm UTC

I wonder if the Um Problem can be used to solve the problem of improper keming.

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby alcore » Wed May 28, 2014 2:59 pm UTC

Given that it's imaginary, it's clearly the root of a negative problem. No wonder she freaked out.

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby Flumble » Wed May 28, 2014 2:59 pm UTC

Luckily in dutch statistics we often speak of a vase, pot or bag containing coloured balls —the vase and pot being more common, even though a lot of vases and pots are transparent, whereas the bag is almost exclusively opaque.

Jackpot777 wrote:I wonder if the Um Problem can be used to solve the problem of improper keming.

What's a problern?

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby orthogon » Wed May 28, 2014 3:05 pm UTC

Flumble wrote:Luckily in dutch statistics we often speak of a vase, pot or bag containing coloured balls —the vase and pot being more common, even though a lot of vases and pots are transparent, whereas the bag is almost exclusively opaque.

Except for LAG bags.
xtifr wrote:... and orthogon merely sounds undecided.

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby moxfyre » Wed May 28, 2014 3:21 pm UTC

This same joke, basically, appears in the book Naked Statistics, where the author pokes fun at how the word urn is almost never used outside of the funeral business and probability problems.

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby airdrik » Wed May 28, 2014 3:43 pm UTC

Flumble wrote:Luckily in dutch statistics we often speak of a vase, pot or bag containing coloured balls —the vase and pot being more common, even though a lot of vases and pots are transparent, whereas the bag is almost exclusively opaque.

Jackpot777 wrote:I wonder if the Um Problem can be used to solve the problem of improper keming.

What's a problern?


It's an um which may or may not contain any of the following: red, white, black or mutable balls, ashes, spirits, dihydrogen monoxide, secrets, disfluencies, quanta, euphemisms, statistics or bad kerning.

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby orthogon » Wed May 28, 2014 4:01 pm UTC

Flumble wrote:... a vase, pot or bag ...

By happenstance, this is rather close to something that British magician Paul Daniels used to say. For some reason his tricks would often involve a vase, and he would say "vase, vase or vase", pronouncing the word three different ways: "vahz, vayz or vorz". I know that "vayz" is the US pronunciation, but I've always wondered whether anybody says "vorz", or whether he just added that for rhythm and comic effect.
xtifr wrote:... and orthogon merely sounds undecided.

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby StClair » Wed May 28, 2014 4:07 pm UTC

moxfyre wrote:This same joke, basically, appears in the book Naked Statistics, where the author pokes fun at how the word urn is almost never used outside of the funeral business and probability problems.

And jokes about Greeks, of course.

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby Eebster the Great » Wed May 28, 2014 4:47 pm UTC

orthogon wrote: I know that "vayz" is the US pronunciation, but I've always wondered whether anybody says "vorz", or whether he just added that for rhythm and comic effect.

/veɪs/ (rhymes with "space") is the most common American English pronunciation, with /veɪz/ (rhymes with "maze") a distant second, and /vɑːz/ (rhymes with the first syllable of "plaza") only heard occasionally. I have never heard /vɔərs/, but I have heard that vowel treated similarly in "wash" (/wɔərʃ/).

E: Left out /veɪz/ somehow.
Last edited by Eebster the Great on Wed May 28, 2014 9:17 pm UTC, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby da Doctah » Wed May 28, 2014 8:51 pm UTC

Lenoxus wrote:Meanwhile… how does she know the ashes are her grandfather's? :?


They were very close.

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Trigger Warning?

Postby Overand » Wed May 28, 2014 10:14 pm UTC

Over on explainxkcd (link blocked due to antispam protection) - there is an explanation that this is poking fun at "Trigger Warnings."

That doesn't seem even remotely apparent to me - sounds more like a case of the viewer applying their own meaning.

Anyone else have thoughts on this? I strongly doubt this comic has anything to do with the "trigger warning" controversy.

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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby HES » Wed May 28, 2014 10:37 pm UTC

Here, and I don't see the connection.
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Re: 1374: "Urn"

Postby aerion111 » Wed May 28, 2014 10:55 pm UTC

Eebster the Great wrote:
orthogon wrote: I know that "vayz" is the US pronunciation, but I've always wondered whether anybody says "vorz", or whether he just added that for rhythm and comic effect.

/veɪs/ (rhymes with "space") is the most common American English pronunciation, with /veɪz/ (rhymes with "maze") a distant second, and /vɑːz/ (rhymes with the first syllable of "plaza") only heard occasionally. I have never heard /vɔərs/, but I have heard that vowel treated similarly in "wash" (/wɔərʃ/).

E: Left out /veɪz/ somehow.

That is quite unhelpful to me, since to me a) I'd pronounce Veis and Veiz the same - it'd be different if there was more letters after, but there aren't, and b) 'Maze' and 'Space' rhymes.
EDIT: I did not mean that Veis and Veiz is objectively meant to be pronounced the same. I meant I did. Had to change that to not look like a complete idiot.


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