1996-07-28 - Re: Twenty Beautiful Women

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From: tcmay@got.net (Timothy C. May)
To: cypherpunks@toad.com
Message Hash: fa500584329c9ad81492d4fd9b8df6fda8372ec43ce96bb686a10de60ebbd184
Message ID: <ae20465614021004eb6f@[]>
Reply To: N/A
UTC Datetime: 1996-07-28 08:11:49 UTC
Raw Date: Sun, 28 Jul 1996 16:11:49 +0800

Raw message

From: tcmay@got.net (Timothy C. May)
Date: Sun, 28 Jul 1996 16:11:49 +0800
To: cypherpunks@toad.com
Subject: Re: Twenty Beautiful Women
Message-ID: <ae20465614021004eb6f@[]>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain

At 3:54 AM 7/28/96, Mike Duvos wrote:
>ichudov@algebra.com (Igor Chudov @ home) writes:
> > Also, I would appreciate if someone specified what exactly
> > the goal function is.
>Me too.
>This is an interesting problem, vaguely reminescent of the pie
>judging contests commonly used as examples of non-parametric
>statistics.  Given two pies, (or two women), a judge can
>subjectively order them by tastiness, (or beauty), but there is
>no concept of an continuous metric in which the ratings of
>particular items are embedded.

You're both reading far too much into this problem. David S. specified
"beauty," the personal judgment of the chooser. No deep philosophical

Perhaps an equivalent formulation will make this clearer:

One is passing through a town with 20 gas stations, with gas at various
prices. The stipulation is that one cannot turn around. Once a gas station
has been passed, there's no turning back. So, what is the best strategy for
finding the lowest gas price (or shortest lines, or cleanest appearance, or
brightest sign, or whatever one wants to analyze). Or even by the most
beautiful girl standing in front, to return us to the original statement.

So, you see, the problem is well-defined, with an elegant solution.

--Tim May

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