Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

B Beginning math question

  1. Dec 25, 2016 #1
    I suck at math. Help?

    Any good at statistics? I could use your help. I like to make nearly impossible predictions but I suck at calculating odds of success.

    On November 2nd, 2016 at 15:54 Mountain Standard Time I made an astronomy prediction on my Facebook page:

    P.M.* January 9, 2017:
    IK Pegasi B appears as a NOVA.

    A.M.* January 16, 2017:
    AN Ursae Majoris B appears as a type 1a SUPERNOVA. (Don't fly anywhere)

    *Mountain Standard Time

    I am not trying to upset anyone. I do mental exercises to expand my view of reality.

    I made the prediction 67 days in advance = 1 in 67. Half day "P.M." should cut it in half = 1 in 134?
    Or?

    Current consensus is IK Pegasi B won't nova for 2 million years. So, is 1 in 2 million closer?

    To the half day is 365 times 2 = 730 times 2 million = 1 in 1,460,000,000?

    Since no one considers polar white dwarfs a possibility for a supernova event I assume it is fair to calculate the odds of that happening at zero?

    Once again I apologize for asking silly questions and i appreciate your patience.

    Sincerely
    Doc

    ps. Merry Christmas
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 25, 2016 #2

    micromass

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Education Advisor
    2016 Award

    Sorry, it doesn't work that way at all. 1 in 67 means a certain degree of surprise/uncertainty. Specifying how many days in advance doesn't quantify that way. I can predict that in 67 years it will rain somewhere in the world. I did it 67 days in advance, but the odds aren't 1 in 67.

    For sure though, specifying something more in advance than specifying it right before it happens is more impressive, and might deserve more impressive odds, but it won't be 1 in 67.
     
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?
Draft saved Draft deleted