- #1

RenasontsMan

- 11

- 0

My opponent once had three men exposed on his back row. THREE! I was plowing ahead and bearing off, leaving one checker he might hit with a roll of 1-X or X-1. Not to worry. I had three chances to hit him back IF he got me.

Well, he rolled 1-1 and not only hit me, but COVERED every one of his three exposed men in his home row. I was twitterpated. Unfair, I say.

Now this brings to mind a test which I dare say not one of you could pass.

Let me offer up a series of dice rolls as you play backgammon. I will be behind a screen and

roll the dice and then call out the numbers. I may be honest or not.

HOW would you tell, dear physics intellectual, if I were cheating on any given single roll, series of rolls, or all of them? You would have to rely on simplistic statistical tests, as if 6-6 or acey-deucey wouldn't be likely to come up three or four times in a row.

It just so happens that my little girl was playing the acey-deucey variation of backgammon with her cousin some time ago. He was mopping up, going away, whistling a happy tune, if you know what I mean.

I encouraged my little girl, then about 6, "Come on, roll acey-deucey." She did. And with acey-deucey, she got her choice of doubles and another roll. Of course she opted for 6-6. Her cousin yawned, his lead still apparently insurmountable.

I yelled again, "Come on, roll acey-deucey." She did. Double sixes it was.

Her cousin's eyes got wider.

I yelled, "Come on, roll acey-deucey." I swear, it happened. Three 1-2's in a row.

Finally, on her next roll, she did NOT roll acey-deucey. No, she rolled 6-6.

Her cousin, 7, jumped up screaming, and cried as he ran away, utterly beaten.

Twenty-four times four is a significant portion of the number necessary to bear off all your men.

So HOW would you determine randomness objectively while playing backgammon?

Better yet, provide a formula for generating random numbers.

And if evaluating whether or not a given number is indeed random, what claim do any of us have on intellectualism, hmmmmm?