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22 July 2010

PETWHAC: Population of Events That Would Have Appeared Coincidental

From NYT's Wordplay:

You throw a dart at random on to a dark wall, and shine a flashlight to see where it went. Wow, it hit a bull's eye! Amazing! Very few of us bother to turn on the light switch. The flashlight of our selective attention blinds us to the underlying reality. It turns out that the whole wall is tiled with bull's eyes! Moreover, throughout your life you take thousands of potshots at them.

There are implications here for social theory and religion. I love it.

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