Abstract / Synopsis
This poem applies the concept of expected value, denoted E(X), to the context of any limited resources two parties desire. Usually, "you divide, I choose" keeps pieces equal enough to preempt charges of unfairness. But if one piece is much larger, many distrust the unbiased (in expected value) process of a coin flip giving each person the same chance at the bigger piece and the same cookie amount on average: E(X) = (1/2)p + (1/2)(1-p) = 1/2
Lawrence M. Lesser, "COOKIE(X) = 1/2," Journal of Humanistic Mathematics, Volume 13 Issue 2 (July 2023), pages 513-514. DOI: 10.5642/jhummath.BXDB9256. Available at: https://scholarship.claremont.edu/jhm/vol13/iss2/34
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