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 08-04-2012, 11:41 AM #1 stranger   Join Date: Mar 2012 Posts: 6 Odds for my job I'm not sure if this is the right place to post this but I appreciate all of your smart minds that might be able to help. So I got in trouble long story short at work for upgrading an acct under the wrong name because I had the first name already looked up in the first place. What are the odds of pulling up the name Kevin twice in a row? Thats all I am not smart enough to do the math. What are the odds to pull up Kevin twice in a row no matter what in the U.S.? Thanks fellaz not sure if this is in the right place but ty
08-04-2012, 12:37 PM   #2
newbie

Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 41
Re: Odds for my job

Quote:
 Originally Posted by GoSitOnABanana I'm not sure if this is the right place to post this but I appreciate all of your smart minds that might be able to help. So I got in trouble long story short at work for upgrading an acct under the wrong name because I had the first name already looked up in the first place. What are the odds of pulling up the name Kevin twice in a row? Thats all I am not smart enough to do the math. What are the odds to pull up Kevin twice in a row no matter what in the U.S.? Thanks fellaz not sure if this is in the right place but ty

If you want to find the odds of pulling a name twice in a row, you multiply the probability of pulling the name by itself.

I have no freaking idea how many Kevins there are in the U.S. and it scares me that you might have some kind of crazy database, but to work out the problem you multiply:

Number of people named Kevin/number of people who are not Kevin

X

Number of people named Kevin/number of people who are not Kevin

=the odds of pulling up Kevin's name twice in a row.

08-04-2012, 03:09 PM   #3
Carpal \'Tunnel

Join Date: Sep 2002
Posts: 8,901
Re: Odds for my job

Quote:
 Originally Posted by hAmThEkIlLeR Number of people named Kevin/number of people who are not Kevin X Number of people named Kevin/number of people who are not Kevin =the odds of pulling up Kevin's name twice in a row.
You can't multiply odds; you have to multiply probabilities.

Number of people named Kevin/total people

X

Number of people named Kevin/total people

=the probability of pulling up Kevin's name twice in a row.

For example, if 1/10 of the people are named Kevin, you do 1/10 * 1/10 = 1/100, and then that's odds of 99-to-1. You don't multiply 1/9 * 1/9 = 1/81.

08-04-2012, 03:44 PM   #4
Pooh-Bah

Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Phoenix
Posts: 4,677
Re: Odds for my job

Got to howmanyofme.com to get the statistical probability of any name.

Quote:
 There are 1,056,999 people in the U.S. with the first name Kevin. Statistically the 34th most popular first name. 99.7 percent of people with the first name Kevin are male.

 08-04-2012, 03:55 PM #5 veteran   Join Date: Jun 2011 Posts: 2,263 Re: Odds for my job So based on US statistics, the probability of someone being named Kevin is: 1,056,999/314,115,601 = 1 in 297.17, so the probability of picking two Kevin's in a row would be (1/297.17)^2 = 1 in 88,314. To make this error with other names would obviously vary with the likelihood of the name.
 08-05-2012, 09:47 AM #6 Carpal \'Tunnel     Join Date: Feb 2006 Location: Austin, TX Posts: 14,938 Re: Odds for my job Well, except that we're ignoring the fact here that really you want to know the chance of picking the same name twice, which is just "X" not "X times X". Like if you draw a card from a deck and I draw a card from a seperate deck, the chance that we have the same card is 1/52, not 1/52 * 1/52 (which would be the chance of both of us drawing a *specific* card like the ace of spades. And of course if OP is looking at a series of names, the chance of finding 2 in a row that are the same goes *way* up.
 08-06-2012, 06:31 AM #7 journeyman   Join Date: May 2012 Posts: 399 Re: Odds for my job Your names also probably aren't coming from as random a sample as the population being used in that math. I'm assuming the 1 in 300 includes many names who may not be nearly as likely to have an account with your firm as "Kevin".

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