You would think that my (potentially unhealthy) obsession with numbers would have led me to a career where I would do more number-crunching, like that of a data analyst, statistician or accountant. It feels like it would be the obvious answer, but it would be wrong. Instead, I play mostly with words in my “day job” as a freelance writer. Does that mean I’m not fascinated with logic puzzles like the famous Monty Hall problem? Not at all. Mind-bending logic is the GOAT.
As I discuss in the vlog embedded above, it’s important for all of us to recognize that the obvious answer isn’t always right. We gravitate toward the obvious answer, because it’s the most accessible and it allows for the easiest solution. And this can lead us astray into making some rather illogical decisions.
It’s no secret that I can be a bit of a geek (or maybe I’m a nerd). And maybe that’s a big part of the reason why I’m so fascinated with the Monty Hall problem. On the surface, it flies in the face of conventional logic. Obviously, it doesn’t make a difference if you switch doors. Except it totally does.
After shooting the video, I came up with another reasonably simple explanation. You have a one-in-three chance of picking the door with the car behind it on your first try. If you switch after Monty reveals one of the goat doors, you’ll switch to a goat. Conversely, you have a two-in-three chance of picking a door with a goat behind it on your first try. If Monty then reveals the second goat door, you will necessarily switch to the winning door with the car. Two in three.
Are there any other similar puzzles or brain teasers that you enjoy? Share in the comments below! I’d love to learn more.