This past election day, Channel 7 conducted a statewide survey of 2500 voters leaving the polls, and found, among other things, that 51%claimed to have voted for Boxer and 49%claimed to have voted for her opponent. On the basis of this sample, they declared Boxer the winner.

- If you flip a fair coin 2500 times, what (roughly) is the
probability that it will come up heads at least 51%of the
time?
- Suppose you have a coin that is biased so that it comes up
heads 51%of the time over the long, long haul. You flip
this coin 2500 times. What (roughly) is the probability that
it comes up heads at least half the time?
- If Channel 7 had been willing to bet that Boxer would
eventually win, would you have taken the bet if they
offered odds of 2 to 1? 10 to 1? 100 to 1? dollars to
doughnuts?

Read the essay, `The median isn't the message'. What is the probability that Stephen Jay Gould is alive today.

Tue Jun 28 15:24:59 EDT 1994