On Probability

By: Rachel Womek


I am obliged to blog about something, though I’m not really sure what that something should be. Us Intrepids seem to have hit a creative slump brought about by exhaustion!


I was just replying to a comment on my Facebook page, made by Kiki, actually. The comment was in regards to something being impossible. I was obliged to reply that I am not really sure anything is impossible anymore. After I made that reply I  had to think about my response. What did I mean by that? I certainly don’t think that many things are highly probable but does that make them impossible? No. Not to say that the scenario in question (A werewolf beating up a dragon) would likely ever occur…but there is always a possibility, no matter how slim. If any of you Constant Readers watched that wonderful lecture by Lawrence Krauss a few blogs back then you may recall him talking about the vastness of the universe. How our galaxy is only one of trillions and how each galaxy contains billions or even trillions of stars. In this dazzlingly enormous Universe rare things happen all the time. Is our world and the fact of our existence any more bizarre than a world where werewolves mêlée dragons”? In The Elegant Universe, physicist Brian Greene gives us a taste of probability: “…if you walked into a solid wall every second, you would have to wait longer than the current age of the universe to have a good chance of passing through it on one of your attempts. With eternal patience (and longevity), though, you could-sooner or later-emerge on the other side.” So you can see that while, at fist glance, the notion of walking through a solid wall Shadow Cat style seems impossible, it is merely very highly improbable. So the next time you hear someone say “nothings impossible”, don’t dismiss it as fanciful nonsense; it seems probable that nothing is impossible.

On the topic of probability: Check out this photography of dogs underwater. Cute right?


Categories: Nerd | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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