Interesting Esoterica

The Sleeping Beauty Controversy

Article by Peter Winkler
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In 2000, Adam Elga posed the following problem: Some researchers are going to put you to sleep. During the two days that your sleep will last, they will briefly wake you up either once or twice, depending on the toss of a fair coin (Heads: once; Tails: twice). After each waking, they will put you back to sleep with a drug that makes you forget that waking. When you are first awakened, to what degree ought you believe that the outcome of the coin toss is Heads? This may seem like a simple question about conditional probability, but 100 or so articles (including thousands of pages in major philosophy journals) have been devoted to it. Herein is an attempt to summarize the main arguments and to determine what, if anything, has been learned.

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BibTeX entry

@article{TheSleepingBeautyControversy,
	title = {The Sleeping Beauty Controversy},
	author = {Peter Winkler},
	url = {http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.4169/amer.math.monthly.124.7.579},
	urldate = {2017-08-14},
	abstract = {In 2000, Adam Elga posed the following problem:

Some researchers are going to put you to sleep. During the two days that your sleep will last, they will briefly wake you up either once or twice, depending on the toss of a fair coin (Heads: once; Tails: twice). After each waking, they will put you back to sleep with a drug that makes you forget that waking. When you are first awakened, to what degree ought you believe that the outcome of the coin toss is Heads?

This may seem like a simple question about conditional probability, but 100 or so articles (including thousands of pages in major philosophy journals) have been devoted to it. Herein is an attempt to summarize the main arguments and to determine what, if anything, has been learned.},
	comment = {},
	collections = {easily-explained,probability-and-statistics}
}