[ExI] Sigh

Damien Broderick thespike at satx.rr.com
Sat Jul 3 17:52:16 UTC 2010

On 7/3/2010 10:50 AM, John Clark wrote:

> I have no idea what you mean by "bias factors". These people payed their
> dollar, made their guess, and then they either won or they did not.

This is depressing. You admit you don't have any idea what I'm saying, 
but you know it's wrong anyway.

Humans can't make random guesses. We don't feel right repeating the same 
number in a sequence of numbers, for example, yet we do cling to favored 
numbers on separate occasions. People often feel some numbers are 
"lucky" and others aren't. When we place bets on an array of numbers 
from, say, 1 through 50, we tend to choose numbers in the range 1-31, 
since those contain the birthdays of people we love. And so on. This is 
not news.

If you want to see the collective effect of such biases, take a look at 
the normalized scale I posted yesterday from one Lotto draw. These core 
preference factors are quite stable over time, but they do jitter about 
some. This jitter is part of what I referred to as the noise floor. It 
can be countered by averaging many draws. It is not easy to obtain this 
fine-grained detailed from lotteries. (Number of winners is too 

Most parapsychological studies are far simpler and more controlled than 
lottery behavior, so a weak effect is easier to identify. This is a key 
part of the process known as "scientific method," most people on this 
list have heard of it.

Damien Broderick

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