[extropy-chat] Coin Flip Paradox

Mike Dougherty msd001 at gmail.com
Wed Jan 31 15:32:48 UTC 2007

reminiscent of conversations in Godel, Escher, Bach

So are you saying that I should inspect the coin to determine that it
is fair?  If I can't comment -in principle- on your coin, then I have
to test it?  So how is the test done?  If it looks like a normal coin,
it may still be rigged.  You might have a magnetic coin that tests
'fair' during my examination, but during our bet you throw it onto a
magnetic surface so I always lose.  Do I retroactively determine
unfair coin after I lose to you, or fair when I win?  Or do I assume
no objective state, and base your coin only on what I know of you
regarding your likelihood to cheat me or not?  That's a completely
different kind of probability.

(maybe by contributing to this conversation I will gain some
understanding by being corrected/taught in the process)

On 1/31/07, gts <gts_2000 at yahoo.com> wrote:
> Gordon: "Say there, Jef! Can you help explain something to me? I don't
> know much about probability theory and I was hoping you could help me out."

> Jef: "Right. It's about the Principle, Gordon. It's BEAUTIFUL. You should
> be glad I told you about it! You need only dwell on its magnificent beauty
> for a few moments, and then you too will have THE POWER."
> Gordon: "If you say so..."

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