Its a 1 in a 1,000,000 chance you will get hit by a meteor in your lifetime. Even less likely it will happen today.

So, what is the chance that at some point today something, anything, will happen to you that has a 1 in a 1,000,000 chance of happening or more? In other words, how often does a day go by where something nearly impossible happens... well, the answer is it is pretty much guaranteed.

In fact every moment you are experiencing countless events that have a one in a million chance or more of happening. Try and wrap your head around that :)

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What does count as a meteor? Does it have to be bigger that 0.001 mm?

@selea I'm not talking about the chance of a meteor hitting you. That was just an example of a rare event. I'm talking about the chance that something statistically rare, anything, will happen to you today.

@freemo And then.. there's an infinite number of actions that could possibly occur...

@elixx Yup, exactly. Which is why there is an infinite number of rare things happening to you in any moment :)

@freemo @elixx most of them aren't particularly interesting though because they don't alter the course of your life


I'm not so sure about that, even small things might have a butterfly effect and all.


I agree - we aren't keen to a lot of dimensionalities. Second-order cybernetics would suggest that systems are comprised of systems of interconnected systems.
Nudge a knob and watch the changes cascade...

@freemo In most uncountable probability space every complete actualization (e.i event with one element) has probability zero. There are many things that can modeled like this that would occur in a persons daily life. So it's reasonable to think of a persons life as a continuous stream of events of probability zero. A continuous stream of realizations that one could have been completely confident would not occur.

@freemo If you flip a coin 100 times, the sequence of heads and tales that results will be one of around 2*10^30 possible such sequences, so the odds will be one in 2*10^30. But you *will* get such an individually improbable sequence simply by flipping the coin 100 times.

Incidentally, this is one reason why arguing for intelligent design by way of the supposed improbability of a human genome doesn't work.

@mathlover Seems like a weak argument for intelligent desing on several fronts...

One, it assumes that there is a single configuration of ones genome that results in life. While the odds of one configuration occuring randomly is very low you'd have to collectively check the odds of **all** configurations that result in life. Which if broad enough may not be impractically rare

Two, it is naive to the fact that the simplest form of "life" that is complex enough that it can begin basic replication (and thus incremental improvement through evolution) may be much simpler than even our simplest organisms today

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