Thursday, January 13, 2005

Luck In Math and Physics

About a week ago I saw a movie called "Intacto". Here is a description:

With INTACTO, from director Juan Carlos Fresnadillo, a group of people who have "the gift" of being extremely lucky play into a suspenseful world of gambling and superstition. The film begins and ends in the Canary Islands, where ringleader Sam (Max von Sydow), a Holocaust survivor, runs a casino. His right-hand man Federico (Eusebio Poncela) is stripped of "the gift" in a terrifying exchange that Federico sees as worse than death: Sam hugs him and in doing so steals his luck away. Desperate for revenge, Federico latches onto Tomas (Leonard Sbaraglia), the miraculous sole survivor of an airplane crash. He convinces Tomas to test his luck in various games (one involves running full-speed, blindfolded, through a heavily wooded forest to see if he is "lucky" enough to avoid running into a tree.) By training Tomas to be a winner, Federico hopes to eventually have him challenge Sam. Thrown into the complicated mix are an untouchable bullfighter (Antonio Dechent), and an auto accident survivor (Monica Lopez) who want to break up this obsessive gambling ring.

George Polya, the writer of the book "How to Solve it", said that one of the aspects of a good problem solver is luck. You need luck to come up with the ideas that help solve the problem in question. So luck does play a factor in problem solving, but how to do we obtain luck or maximize our luck? We can see luck in two ways, we can either maximize our luck or we can minimize its use.

We can minimize the amount of luck necessary to solve a problem by studying problem solving techniques and studying the subject. This is what my website focuses on.

Now aside from strictly paranormal methods to increase one's luck, we can approach the subject from an experimental basis. For the most part luck has a large subjective component, of course there are some instances when most people would agree a certain person is lucky, but they are few and far between. One way to "maximize" one's luck would be to keep a record of the lucky things that happen to you everyday, try to organize the records according to the field in which you were lucky (lucky in physics, lucky financially, etc..). Then focus on the field of interest, if you want to maximize your luck in physics, make a chart of all the days you where "lucky" in physics and try to find a pattern. You can even analyze the data statistically and find which days, and times when you are most lucky. Once you do this you can plan your studies such that on those lucky days you work on problems you want to solve.

After you have compiled and analyzed enough luck data, you can perform experiments. For instance you can perform certain actions and see if they substantially affect your luck data. If you find that certain actions substantially affect your luck data in a positive manner, then you can maximize your luck.

John G.


Post a Comment

<< Home