Chance: The Life of Games & the Game of Life by Joaquim P. Marques de Sá

By Joaquim P. Marques de Sá

It is a particular publication on how chance impacts our daily lives. It publications the reader in a nearly chronological journey throughout the attention-grabbing and awesome legislation of likelihood, omnipresent within the wildlife and in our day-by-day lives. alongside the way in which many desirable issues are mentioned. those contain difficult chance paradoxes, "paranormal" coincidences, online game odds, and reasons and results. eventually the writer discusses percentages and obstacles of studying the legislation of a Universe immersed in probability occasions. This fascinating booklet, with its many easy-to-follow mathematical examples, will tell and entertain the scientist and non-scientist alike.

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6). However, if the number of rounds is small, John has the advantage. 1 000 × Fig. 6. Evolution of John’s average gain with the number of rounds, in six possible sequences. 3 Bad Luck Games 51 When we say ‘tends to zero’, in the law of large numbers, the meaning is that it is possible to find a sufficiently high value of n after which the probability of a curve exceeding a pre-specified deviation is below any arbitrarily low value we may wish to stipulate. We shall see later what value of n that is, for this convergence in probability.

Since each of them can come from any of the 4 suits, we have 12 3 × 4 × 4 × 4 = 14 080 different possibilities. 423 . 2 598 960 That is, a pair is almost as probable as getting heads (or tails) when tossing a coin. 4 Slot Machines The first slot machines (invented in the USA in 1897) had 3 wheels, each with 10 symbols. The wheels were set turning until they stopped in a certain sequence of symbols. The number of possible sequences was therefore 10 × 10 × 10 = 1000. 001. 000 093 914 probability of winning the jackpot.

1, was able to demonstrate and Fig. 5. Ten possible evolutions of the average gain in the card game 50 3 Expecting to Win which has come to be known as the law of large numbers or Bernoulli’s law : for a sequence of random variables with the same probability law and independent from each other (in our example, no round depends on the others), the probability that the respective average deviates from the mathematical expectation by more than a certain pre-established value tends to zero. Turning back to our previous question, we cannot guarantee that after a certain number of rounds all average gain curves will deviate from the mathematical expectation by less than a certain value, but it is nevertheless possible to determine a degree of certainty (compute the probability) of such an event, and that degree of certainty increases with the number of rounds.

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