[LMB] OT: Coincidence, was Lois-Bujold Digest, Vol 113, Issue 84

Damien Sullivan phoenix at mindstalk.net
Thu Oct 23 20:11:57 BST 2014

On Fri, Oct 24, 2014 at 03:39:29AM +1100, I wrote:

> Statistically, as you read this 7 one-in-a-billion chance are
> probably happening. (1)
> (1) Yes I know that the figures are considerably more complicated than that.

You'd state it as frequencies to be more rigorous, like "per billion
hours experienced" or "per billion social interactions".

I think most people tend to round low probabilities down to zero.  If
it's improbable then it can't happen, right?  Frequencies probably work
better, especially when thinking about populations or long time periods.
If one in a million people get cancer X by the age of 5, that's 20 child
cancer X patients in the US.

-xx- Damien X-) 

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