## 0881: "Probability"

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darknut
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### 0881: "Probability"

my normal approach is useless here,too.

serious comic. this dont look good
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gooley
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

Cool story, bro.

gooley
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

Seriously, Randall. Nobody cares about your personal life, we just want entertaining comics. Please keep it professional.

KShrike
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

Reference to something very long ago. YES!!!
On 10/10/10, My Little Pony started to appeal to adult males. Ya rly!
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CorruptUser
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

Yay, actuarial mathematics.

So, his probability of living another 5 years is 81%, but the probability of living another 5 years given that he lives 5 is 95%?

gooley
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

CorruptUser wrote:Yay, actuarial mathematics.

So, his probability of living another 5 years is 81%, but the probability of living another 5 years given that he lives 5 is 95%?

No, it's a 95% chance (s)he will die within the next 5 years.

Edit: The probability of living past that additional 5 years is 5%.

Mahou
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

gooley wrote:Seriously, Randall. Nobody cares about your personal life, we just want entertaining comics. Please keep it professional.

Screw you, I care. And sometimes I like a serious comic.

Fingers crossed that it is just a comic?

OccasionalObserver
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

gooley wrote:Seriously, Randall. Nobody cares about your personal life, we just want entertaining comics. Please keep it professional.

You are a terrible person.

gooley
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

Mahou wrote:
gooley wrote:Seriously, Randall. Nobody cares about your personal life, we just want entertaining comics. Please keep it professional.

Screw you, I care. And sometimes I like a serious comic.

Fingers crossed that it is just a comic?

You just like to pretend that you're friends with Randall, when in reality he wants nothing to do with you. Stop idolizing him.

lasercannon
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

gooley wrote:Seriously, Randall. Nobody cares about your personal life, we just want entertaining comics. Please keep it professional.

beet31425
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

Mahou wrote:
gooley wrote:Seriously, Randall. Nobody cares about your personal life, we just want entertaining comics. Please keep it professional.

Screw you, I care. And sometimes I like a serious comic.

Fingers crossed that it is just a comic?

+1

This was one of the most poignant mathematical comics I've ever seen. Beautiful work from Randall.

Meng Bomin
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

gooley wrote:Seriously, Randall. Nobody cares about your personal life, we just want entertaining comics. Please keep it professional.

An ironic comment given the obvious lack of class.

brinhe
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

On topic, if this one's real life inspired, my thoughts and prayers are with you and your friends/family, Randall. Slightly off topic, this comic reminded me (among many less pleasant things) of a friend of mine who felt that rock climbing was ruined for her when she realized it was all physics. Sometimes the numbers suck.

Surg
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

Really good alt text

Shay Guy
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

Meaning of both solid line and dashed line unclear.

gooley wrote:Nobody cares about your personal life, we just want entertaining comics.

Speak for yourself.

gooley wrote:You just like to pretend that you're friends with Randall

Claim unsupportable.

CorruptUser
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

gooley wrote:
CorruptUser wrote:Yay, actuarial mathematics.

So, his probability of living another 5 years is 81%, but the probability of living another 5 years given that he lives 5 is 95%?

No, it's a 95% chance (s)he will die within the next 5 years.

Edit: The probability of living past that additional 5 years is 5%.

Errrm, no.

The way I got my numbers, P(live x+y given x) = P(live x+y)/P(live x), or P(live 10 given 5) = P(live 10)/P(live 5) = .77/.81 = .9506

I would use the actuarial notation if I was capable of writing it in this forum. 5|5Px. There, good enough.

From the comic, he has a 81% of living 5 years, 77% of living 10. Since the force of mortality is always > 0, S is always decreasing and F is always increasing.
Last edited by CorruptUser on Mon Apr 04, 2011 5:24 am UTC, edited 3 times in total.

gooley
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

brinhe wrote:gooley's a clear troll.

This.

abhimat.gautam
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

gooley wrote:Seriously, Randall. Nobody cares about your personal life, we just want entertaining comics. Please keep it professional.

His job is not to entertain you. He makes this comic because he enjoys it personally, and you get to be entertained as an aside. Please don’t tell him what to do, because this is his way of expressing whatever he wants.

Darke
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

gooley wrote:Seriously, Randall. Nobody cares about your personal life, we just want entertaining comics. Please keep it professional.
See the problem is you're being too blunt. This forum is filled with a lot of geeks and nerds, so nobody here is unfamiliar with the concept of trolling. On a normal website, the obvious lack of basic human empathy would have stirred a violent reaction of people accusing you of possessing all kinds of vile character traits and being a souless, heartless bastard, but here nobody is going to bite, not if you're going to be as subtle as a baseball bat to the head. I would have suggested a simpler "Is anyone else kind of growing tired of Randall's comics about his personal life? I mean, I understand he's going through tough times but this comic is really supposed to be funny, I'm not here to read A Softer World." Granted, such a post would not likely not stir the same vitriolic reaction you're attempting to cause with your first post, but I think you'd be far more likely to at least get a serious reaction other than "lol troll."

That being said, I guess I can consider myself trolled now. (In my defense, it's 1:30 AM, I'd rather not go to sleep, and I feel like flexing my writing muscles)
At the end of the day, you have to worship the god that can set you on fire. It's just common sense.

gooley
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

abhimat.gautam wrote:
gooley wrote:Seriously, Randall. Nobody cares about your personal life, we just want entertaining comics. Please keep it professional.

His job is not to entertain you. He makes this comic because he enjoys it personally, and you get to be entertained as an aside. Please don’t tell him what to do, because this is his way of expressing whatever he wants.

Please don't tell me what to do, because this is my way of expressing whatever I want.

syko_lozz
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

Poor Randall.
Those numbers look a lot like the C-word (the 6 letter one!).
When your world revolves around a sample of n=1, stats mean very little.
Sending my prayers too
Debate politics with a fern. If you lose, refuse to water it.

lemmings
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

Wow, um, I know that we as random, anonymous, Internet citizens have absolutely no right to be involved in your personal life, but if this has anything to do with real events, like what happened 5 months ago...

Ghandi 2
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

What on earth is the first panel supposed to be representing? You have to label your lines as well as your axes!

Darke, A Softer World is funny.

Darke
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

Ghandi 2 wrote:Darke, A Softer World is funny.
Oh I love ASW, but it's a darker brand of humor. Perhaps not the best example, but it was the first that came to mind.
At the end of the day, you have to worship the god that can set you on fire. It's just common sense.

Eternal Density
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

Stick figure hugs look freaky.
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gooley
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

Darke wrote:
gooley wrote:Seriously, Randall. Nobody cares about your personal life, we just want entertaining comics. Please keep it professional.
See the problem is you're being too blunt. This forum is filled with a lot of geeks and nerds, so nobody here is unfamiliar with the concept of trolling. On a normal website, the obvious lack of basic human empathy would have stirred a violent reaction of people accusing you of possessing all kinds of vile character traits and being a souless, heartless bastard, but here nobody is going to bite, not if you're going to be as subtle as a baseball bat to the head. I would have suggested a simpler "Is anyone else kind of growing tired of Randall's comics about his personal life? I mean, I understand he's going through tough times but this comic is really supposed to be funny, I'm not here to read A Softer World." Granted, such a post would not likely not stir the same vitriolic reaction you're attempting to cause with your first post, but I think you'd be far more likely to at least get a serious reaction other than "lol troll."

That being said, I guess I can consider myself trolled now. (In my defense, it's 1:30 AM, I'd rather not go to sleep, and I feel like flexing my writing muscles)

See, I troll on multiple levels. As you conclusively noticed, my apparent lack of effort (a level II troll) complemented my obvious level I troll by causing an anal-ytic like you to write a lengthy paragraph about how terrible a troll I am.

syko_lozz
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

on a more pedantic note, why cut the axis at 70%? It makes it look much much more depressing. I want to know what the line does after 10yrs. Does it plateau or keep falling?
Debate politics with a fern. If you lose, refuse to water it.

Darke
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

gooley wrote:
Darke wrote:
gooley wrote:See, I troll on multiple levels. As you conclusively noticed, my apparent lack of effort (a level II troll) complemented my obvious level I troll by causing an anal-ytic like you to write a lengthy paragraph about how terrible a troll I am.

And by responding to this post, you best me yet again. You sir are a formidable opponent.

Also I like what you did with the anal-ytic, that was clever.
At the end of the day, you have to worship the god that can set you on fire. It's just common sense.

Jay
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

Looks a lot like the graphs I was looking at last summer. Got my fair share of those IV bags, too, and every single one of them made me feel like crap. Still live and kicking, possibly harder than ever. I'm 34.

bluefish
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

Wow, that hit close to home.

You know what the worst thing about understanding probability is? It's when you look at a table and a chart like the ones in that comic and you know that you and your loved ones aren't that special. It's when you look at that data and, even though you already know that the only way out of the fire is through it, the complete unfairness sinks its teeth in. Because the only way out if through...and not everyone gets through.

Sometimes, ignorance is bliss. But if you can't have ignorance, you can at least learn when to put the papers aside and just keep putting one foot in front of the other.

syko_lozz wrote:on a more pedantic note, why cut the axis at 70%? It makes it look much much more depressing. I want to know what the line does after 10yrs. Does it plateau or keep falling?

If it's the big C, they usually stop tracking after ten years of complete remission.

Actually, it's pretty encouraging that they even give ten year data. For some of these things, they cut it at five because it just starts to hit the floor. And I'm not sure any of the studies report how many people were diagnosed with a new cancer five years after they get rid of the previous one. Not talking recurrence either. I'm talking a whole new primary.

astifter
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

A sad and serious comic. And very good.

Thank you Randall for entertaining me all this years and also giving me something to think about sometimes. I wish you all the best.

IThinkTherefore
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

What does the dotted line represent?

Posts: 1
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

I had a moment just like this 4 months ago when my 3 year old son was diagnosed with cancer. Those numbers look a lot like disease free survival / event free survival numbers. In fact they are close to the ones we got. In our case those numbers reflect the percentage of people who make it to that date without an event. Events are death or relapse. My heart goes out to you. Good Luck. (yes this comic converted me from troll to poster)

Airbuilder7
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

Upon reading this comic, I immediately assumed it was a graph of the declining likelihood of getting pregnant beyond a certain age, and that the woman's results/miracle of conception had defied his neat statistics and probability.

Then I came here.... And realized I hadn't considered a far darker possibility...

CorruptUser
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

Airbuilder7 wrote:Upon reading this comic, I immediately assumed it was a graph of the declining likelihood of getting pregnant beyond a certain age, and that the woman's results/miracle of conception had defied his neat statistics and probability.

Then I came here.... And realized I hadn't considered a far darker possibility...

Wow, now I realize I hadn't considered a far lighter possibility...

Vertigo
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

I think I made up my mind.

Firstly. If this is something you're working through yourself, or someone close to you is working through. Then I'm with you, and that's all. Just stop reading here, because you deserve to be able to work through this any way you want.

If you're not, if this is just an attempt at something more serious for the sake of a good idea.

Then I don't appreciate it.

Beyond the fact that frankly, I come here for a smile and not a reminder of my own mortality, there's the fact that my family comes here for the same reason. And I really don't like the reminder that they just got instead. I've got a kid on the way, and I really, really don't appreciate the reminder of what my odds of seeing their 5th birthday is.

3 time. Count it. 3 god damn time survivor. Near to 20 years.

I don't want to hear my odds.

Right now I'm wishing there was a way I could block this one comic from my IP so my wife won't see it tomorrow when she browses your site.

Biyabo
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

What a bad, stupid troll. Good comic.
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Hypercube
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

Airbuilder7 wrote:Upon reading this comic, I immediately assumed it was a graph of the declining likelihood of getting pregnant beyond a certain age, and that the woman's results/miracle of conception had defied his neat statistics and probability.

Then I came here.... And realized I hadn't considered a far darker possibility...

That's what I thought too.
Last edited by Hypercube on Mon Apr 04, 2011 5:59 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.

CorruptUser
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

Please don't feed the trolls! kthxbai

Zentropy
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### Re: 0881: "Probability"

I too, would like to like to know what the dashed line could mean. Intuition says it should represent some sort of average, but contextually that doesn't seem to make a lot of sense.

Edit: Wait, it might make sense after all. I'd believe that illness X gives most people at least a couple of years (hence the peak), but the character in the comic just has an unfortunate case of it, or maybe other factors reduce his/her chances further.

Edit 2: Damn it, that still doesn't explain the portions where the solid line is above the dashed one. I give up; any other takers?

Edit 3: As for the comic itself, I "enjoyed" it. The ones with minimal text get me every time. Not implying that the writing is bad by any means, but not needing to go too in-depth with the explanations is a good way to enhance the comic's effect.