Thursday, August 23, 2012

On the Bay

Here's our math. problem for the day, for those of you who like such:

Marty has 5 blue pens, 6 black pens and 4 red pens in his backpack. If he pulls out one pen without looking, what is the probability that the pen is either red or black?
a) 11/15
b) 2/3
c) 1/2
d) 1/3
e) 1/5 Answer at bottom.

Our newspaper carried a front page story today on the beautiful hot and sunny summer we've had and the effects on the local economy. In a word, everyone did "great" this year. Percentage gains, over 2011, ranged from +2% to +20%---hotels, amusement parks, summer eateries and on and on. Good news for all who rely on seasonal trade.

In that same summer vein, we were treated to a sail on Presque Isle Bay recently. And sure enough: a warm, sunny and beautiful evening. Here are a few shots I took from the sailboat: The Erie Yacht Club, a concert at the bayshore's amphitheater, and the sun setting over the peninsula. It just doesn't get much better than this. WOW!

For most adults this may not be overly difficult. If you've played dice and card games, bet at casinos or on the Kentucky Derby or just been around others who talk about odds and probability--even casually--you'll get this rather easily. The challenge is, I guess, that most 16-year-olds haven't done a lot of those things.

The answer is 10 out of 15 or b)2/3.