Paradoxes are arguments, which are contradicting with logic or common sense, mostly using a false and implicit premises.

learn more… | top users | synonyms (1)

0
votes
1answer
35 views

Are distance-related paradoxes limited by the size of an atom?

See these 2 paradoxes: Coastline paradox The coastline paradox is the counterintuitive observation that the coastline of a landmass does not have a well-defined length. ...
4
votes
2answers
244 views

Is the pseudomenon a statement?

I'm asking this because I'm teaching a class on paradoxes for kids, and I realized I have no idea what the answer to this question is. It is a research question in the pedagogical sense, I suppose. ...
0
votes
2answers
85 views

Does this paradox have a name?

As a student many years ago I learned of a paradox of something that is almost a certainty, while at the same time being highly improbable. For example, if you flip 10 coins the chances of all being ...
2
votes
1answer
33 views

Could you explain Perron's paradox to me, please?

This is Perron's paradox: Let $N$ be the largest integer. If $N > 1$, then $N^2 > N$, contradicting the definition of $N$. Hence $N = 1$. What does it mean? I get from it that a very large ...
0
votes
2answers
82 views

Russell's paradox with bounded comprehension

Consider the set $S = \{A, \varnothing\}$ and define $A = \{x \in S|x \not\in x\}$; this is the same as Russell's paradox except with bounded comprehension, ie $A\in A\iff A\not\in A$. I think the ...
0
votes
2answers
66 views

Could the birthday paradox be interpreted also about deaths?

Is the probability from the birthday paradox also true about deaths? If so, why? Or why not? I would think that it is also true about deaths, but it doesn't say so.
1
vote
2answers
103 views

Explain the Birthday Paradox

this is my first question at Maths Stackexchange, so, first of all, hello world! My question is, I recently read about the Birthday Paradox which states that in a group of 23 people, there's a ...
0
votes
0answers
50 views

World cup birthday paradox for two pairs

The BBC report on the world cup squads The birthday paradox at the World Cup shows the 50:50 prediction for there being 16 teams out of the 32 that meet the pair birthday criteria. However my ...
1
vote
2answers
43 views

An exercise about Borel paradox

If $X$ and $Y$ are independent standard normals, what is the conditional distribution of $Y$ given that $Z=1$, where $Z=I(X=Y)$?
3
votes
2answers
41 views

Paradox of the trumpet shape

This is a question I had for long time now, when you rotate the function y=1/x, x>0 (say x and y both measure meters) about the x axes by 2pi you get a shape which has infinite surface area and finite ...
9
votes
0answers
183 views

Paradoxical models of $\sf ZF$ without choice [closed]

There are some models of $\sf ZF$ without the Axiom of choice, where some paradoxical statements hold that are not possible in $\sf ZFC$ (we do not require that all those statements necessarily hold ...
5
votes
0answers
64 views

Connectedness of parts used in the Banach–Tarski paradox

A quote from the Wikipedia article "Axiom of choice": One example is the Banach–Tarski paradox which says that it is possible to decompose the 3-dimensional solid unit ball into finitely many ...
1
vote
0answers
59 views

Buffon needle in higher dimensions

Imagine a stick of length 1, and also a floor with evenly spaced lines, such that the distance between neighboring lines is also 1. If one throws the stick on the floor, there will be certain ...
1
vote
1answer
76 views

St. Petersburg Paradox. Expected value seems wrong.

Related: St. Petersburg Paradox I was reading today the Wikipedia page on the St. Petersburg Paradox. The posted expected value is: $ 1/2 * 1 + 1/4*2 + 1/8*4 ... $ This seems very wrong to me. ...
1
vote
4answers
418 views

Proof of Drinker paradox [duplicate]

I searched all over the internet but didn't find a formal proof for this paradox, so here is my attempt: $\exists x[P(x)\implies \forall yP(y)]$ Let $x=x_0$. Thus $P(x_0)$ is given. Let $y$ be ...
1
vote
0answers
55 views

Bus arrival poisson paradox

I have a question about the waiting time paradox for poisson processes(in this case in terms of bus arrivals). Suppose I know that buses arrive with poisson distribution(lambda). I arrive at fixed ...
4
votes
3answers
157 views

What exactly is the paradox in Zeno's paradox?

I have known about Zeno's paradox for some time now, but I have never really understood what exactly the paradox is. People always seem to have different explainations. From wikipedia: In the ...
2
votes
1answer
78 views

Very strange “fact” regarding movement

Perplexing (for me at least) statement from the site: http://www.quora.com/Mathematics/What-are-some-of-the-most-counterintuitive-mathematical-results "Fact: You can have a car stand still for ...
1
vote
2answers
78 views

Solving a version of the liar paradox

Given two people $Alice ,Bob$ are either lying or telling the truth Now suppose $Alice$ says "At least one of us is lying." We have two cases: $Alice$ is telling the truth $\implies$ $Bob$ is ...
10
votes
3answers
247 views

Elementary proof that there is no paradoxical decomposition using triangular pieces

I am teaching a geometry course and I am trying to understand two definitions in the textbook ("Geometry with Geometry Explorer" by Michael Hvidsten.) Definition: The area of a rectangle is its base ...
0
votes
3answers
136 views

Infinity and Hilbert's hotel paradox

I did some infinite series calculations while studying Fourier analysis and the concept of infinity really bugs me. I haven't read or heard not one sensible explanation yet (for me), what infinity ...
2
votes
2answers
91 views

Paradox with function representation

Let assume the function $\eta(E)$ has the following representation: $$\eta(E) = \sqrt{\frac{a}{E}}$$ where $a$ is the known positive constant, and $E \in [-\infty, +\infty]$. I know that $\sqrt{a} = ...
16
votes
1answer
7k views

Who discovered this number-guessing paradox?

In this math.se post I described in some detail a certain paradox, which I will summarize: $A$ writes two distinct numbers on slips of paper. $B$ selects one of the slips at random (equiprobably), ...
2
votes
1answer
410 views

Expected value of the distance between 2 uniformly distributed points on circle

I have the following problem (related to Bertrand): Given a circle of radius $a=1$. Choose 2 points randomly on the circle circumference. Then connect these points using a line with length $b$. ...
1
vote
1answer
80 views

Why $\bigcap \emptyset $ isn't defined? [duplicate]

Let us define: $\bigcap \emptyset = \{ x|\forall A(A \in \emptyset \Rightarrow x \in A)\} $ I understood that this cannot be defined. Somehow it enables Russell's paradox to exist. Why is that?
2
votes
1answer
99 views

Why is this inclusion of dual of Banach spaces wrong?

Ive been struggling the last days on this paradox, please I need help! Let $$E\subset F$$ be two Banach spaces equipped with the same norm. Some people told me that $$F^* \subset E^*$$ with $E^*$ ...
3
votes
2answers
228 views

How to ensure that you haven't run into a paradox proving a theorem e.g. by proof by contradiction?

While preparing some lecture notes for next semester and going back to basics (set theory and proof strategies) I came along the following simple question which is about proving theorems in general ...
0
votes
0answers
75 views

How to ensure that you haven't run into a paradox proving a theorem e.g. by proof by contradiction? [duplicate]

While preparing some lecture notes for next semester and going back to basics (set theory and proof strategies) I came along the following simple question which is about proving theorems in general ...
3
votes
3answers
159 views

Paradoxes in Logic

What is it that makes something a paradox? It seems to me that paradoxes are just, in many cases, misunderstandings about the properties some object can have and so misunderstandings about ...
3
votes
1answer
82 views

How can I understand is the picture $2D$ or $3D$

I can not understand is this picture 2D or 3D .what is the rule or condition to be a 2D or 3D picture.How can I understand that?please help me?
3
votes
1answer
260 views

On a scale of 1 to 10, how likely is it that this question is using binary? [closed]

I just read this interesting xkcd strip: At first I thought it was funny, but as I got to ruminate a little over it, I was surprised to be unable to find an answer. As Karolis Juodelė pointed out, ...
2
votes
1answer
138 views

Fingerprint match probability

I am trying to use the formula for the birthday paradox as a reference to figure out an equation that represents the probability of a fingerprint match. Here's the equation for probability of a ...
3
votes
2answers
223 views

Leibniz' Law and that good old riddle

There exists a Theory of Identity in mathematical logic. I've encountered it for the first time in Principia Mathematica by Alfred North Whitehead and Bertrand Russell (1910). Quote: "This definition ...
3
votes
2answers
124 views

Understanding: Axiom of Specification and Russell's Paradox: there is no universe?

Following Halmos's Naive Set Theory, Russell's Paradox emerges from using the axiom of specification (that for every set $A$ and property $\phi$ there exists a set $Y$ whose elements are those ...
1
vote
1answer
53 views

Notation in “proof sketch” of the Banach Tarski paradox on wikipedia

I'm trying to understand the proof sketch here. In step 3 of the proof sketch we have $A_{1} = S(a)M \cup M \cup B$. My understanding is that $S(a)$ and $M$ are both sets. I have failed to understand ...
4
votes
4answers
286 views

The set of all things. A thing itself?

If the universe is the set of all things. Does it contain itself? In other words is it a thing itself? I know its a stupid question, but it really grinds my gears. Thanks! Edit 8.12 Okey, someone ...
4
votes
0answers
106 views

Relationship between paradoxes in logic and geometry/topology

Though I've been reading for years, this is my first question here. Believe it or not, I've tried the search feature- apologies if this is a duplicate. The main point of this post can be summarized ...
1
vote
1answer
177 views

Why isn't $\int_0^1{1/x^2}~dx= 1$ + the integral from 1 to infinity.

This probably as nearly a stupid question as the one that isn't asked, but I've always thought the area under the curve is equal to the integral. So Given the function $\dfrac{1}{x^2}$ which is ...
3
votes
1answer
108 views

Mistake wikipedia article on St petersburg paradox?

I suspect that there is a mistake in the wikipedia article on the St petersburg paradox, and I would like to see if I am right before modifying the article. In the section "Solving the paradox", the ...
2
votes
1answer
109 views

Paradoxes in number theory

Does it exist any paradoxes within the field of number theory? Any examples? My thought is that since it is possible to find paradoxes in set theory, which in some sense more fundamental than number ...
2
votes
2answers
69 views

Variant on Russell's paradox: show $B = \varnothing$

Let $X$ be a set and $R$ a relationship on $X$. Define $N = \{x \in X\mid(x, x) \notin R\}$. Let $$B =\{b \in X\mid(\forall n \in N)(b\,R\,n) \land (\forall n \notin N)(\neg b\,R\,n)\}\;.$$ ...
3
votes
1answer
108 views

Simple tax puzzle

I recently saw some post on facebook whining about taxes. Simplifying it (and changing numbers, facts, etc.), this was saying: For each dollar an employer wants to pay you: 20% go in taxes that ...
-4
votes
1answer
176 views

Is the answer to this question “no”? [closed]

The question in the title should be easy. So, yes or no?
12
votes
5answers
614 views

Why cannot a set be its own element?

When I study Topology, I met with a problem. On my book, it says 'we cannot admit that there exists a set whose members are all the topological spaces. That will lead to a logical contradiction, that ...
1
vote
2answers
272 views

Russell's Paradox

Many of you know such paradox... " $\exists y \forall x (x \in y \Longleftrightarrow \Phi(x)$" for any function $\Phi(x)$ substitute $x \notin x$ for $\Phi(x)$ Then by existential instantiation ...
8
votes
4answers
337 views

St. Petersburg Paradox

A fair coin will be tossed until a heads results. You will then be paid $2^{n-1}$ dollars where $n$ equals the number of flips. Now why is the expected pay out infinite? $$ \sum_{n \geq 1} ...
2
votes
1answer
310 views

Sleeping Beauty paradox - fair prior

I've been reading the Sleeping Beauty problem wiki. The contradicting answers, to me, appear to stem from frequentist and Bayesian interpretations: The "thirder" solution refers to a limit in an ...
1
vote
3answers
122 views

Paradoxes without self-reference?

Most paradoxes involves self-reference, the only exception known to me is Yablo's paradox, however it is still debated if it is really without self-reference. So, I was wondering, are there other ...
0
votes
2answers
96 views

Proof by contradiction and division by $0$

Proof by contradiction is based on the fact that if, as a consequence of a statement's truth, we reach a contradiction, then that statement must be false, since contradictions do not exist in ...
1
vote
0answers
79 views

Achilles without tortoise (II)

I am Achilles II and, on a straight line, I start running really fast: The first $1$ meter I cover in $1$ second. The next $\frac{1}{2}$ meters in $\frac{1}{5}$ seconds. The next $\frac{1}{2^2}$ ...