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Re: [GTh] The Literary Unity of Thomas

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  • Michael Grondin
    To Tim, Ian, et al: I ve been mulling over (some would say obsessing about) this probability thing for five days now, since Ian first posted. Every time I
    Message 1 of 11 , Dec 8, 2009
      To Tim, Ian, et al:

      I've been mulling over (some would say obsessing about) this
      probability thing for five days now, since Ian first posted. Every
      time I write in, I believe I've finally got it right, but then thinking
      about it afterward, I realize that I've bungled somewhere along
      the line. In the present instance, the statements in my last note
      about the import of '*2' in Ian's formula aren't right. Let me try again.

      I start with the clear idea that the number of possible positions
      for two sayings within a collection of 114 sayings is 113*114.
      This includes positional reversals, i.e., both "n,m" and "m,n"
      for any two different numbers in the range 1-114. In particular,
      it includes '8,107' and '107,8'. It follows that the probability of
      L8 and L107 occurring randomly exactly where they are is
      1 in 113*114. If, however, we are interested in the probability
      of their occuring 8th from the top and bottom, regardless of
      order, then the probability is _2_ in 113*114, because not
      only might they occur exactly where they do, but also L107
      might have occurred in position 8 and L8 in position 107.
      So Ian's formula is correct for that particular probability.

      Mike G.
      Mt. Clemens, MI
      (Where the first snow of the season is upon us!)
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