This will blow your mind

Take a deck of cards and shuffle them. Deal them out all face up in a line. What you have done is something that nobody on the planet has ever done before and never wiil. The combination of your cards is unique. Sounds unlikely? Here is proof.
The number of possible deals of 52 cards is ....
80658175170943878571660636856403766975289505440883277824000000000000
This is called 52 factorial or 52 shreik. So just how big is this number?
Set a timer to 20 seconds ,pickyour favourite spot on the equator at start the clock. You're going to walk around the world along the equator, but take a very leisurely pace of one step every billion years. The equatorial circumference of the Earth is 40,075,017 meters. Make sure to pack a deck of playing cards, so you can get in a few trillion hands of solitaire between steps. After you complete your round the world trip, remove one drop of water from the Pacific Ocean. Now do the same thing again: walk around the world at one billion years per step, removing one drop of water from the Pacific Ocean each time you circle the globe. The Pacific Ocean contains 707.6 million cubic kilometers of water. Continue until the ocean is empty. When it is, take one sheet of paper and place it flat on the ground. Now, fill the ocean back up and start the entire process all over again, adding a sheet of paper to the stack each time you’ve emptied the ocean.
Do this until the stack of paper reaches from the Earth to the Sun. Take a glance at the timer, you will see that the three left-most digits haven’t even changed. You still have 8.063e67 more seconds to go. 1 Astronomical Unit, the distance from the Earth to the Sun, is defined as 149,597,870.691 kilometers. So, take the stack of papers down and do it all over again. One thousand times more. Unfortunately, that still won’t do it. There are still more than 5.385e67 seconds remaining. You’re just about a third of the way done.

Comments

  • Member, Beta Tester
    Are the drugs getting to you. Perhaps. The dosage was a bit high.
  • Member, Beta Tester
    It's absolutely true Mike. The samenumber came up in QI the other night. Their description of the magnitude of the number involved srars etc. Found that clip for you.

  • Member, Beta Tester
    I knew that! But I forgot about it almost immediately. I decided to get a hamburger. Now what are the odds that someone will know about the order of cards being astronomical? And then deciding to get a hamburger?
  • Member, Beta Tester
    You're just making a meal out of this Mike!
  • Member, Beta Tester
    That's what I do the best.
  • Member, Beta Tester
    A waisted talent? ;))
  • Member, Beta Tester
    Actually there was something I did better. But I have forgotten what it was.
  • Well, I personally enjoyed Richard's explanation much much more than QI's.
  • edited February 9 Member
    What is the purpose of the 20 seconds on the timer prior to picking a spot to start on the equator if we are taking one step every billion years? Why is there 8.063E67 more seconds to go after stacking the papers to the sun if we only set the timer to 20 seconds?
  • edited February 9 Member
    Okay, one other thing to consider that wasn't considered in the 52! mathematics. The calculations are correct if the rules of shuffling cards prevented duplicates. However, the physical cards don't know this rule about all deals being forced to be unique. More and more shuffles happen as we circumnavigate the globe, until eventually the progressively increasing odds of dealing a duplicate become more likely. At some point, it is much more likely that we will deal a duplicate than a unique deal. Then, we could calculate the astronomically huge improbability of dealing a unique combination rather than a duplicate.

    Imagine there is one unique combination that has never been dealt left. All of the other 80658175170943878571660636856403766975289505440883277824000000000000 minus one possibilities have been dealt. You randomly shuffle the deck and deal. What are your odds now of dealing a duplicate versus the one unique possibility left ;)
  • Member, Beta Tester
    The odds of me doing it are zero. :-j
  • Member, Beta Tester
    I don't even know what you guys are talking about. ;))
Sign In or Register to comment.