Number Psychology Results!

Okay, finally. I have the number psychology experiment results.

All 13 of them.

To recap: The experiment asked the user for a number at four stages. At each stage the user was asked for a number with certain parameters. You can still go do the experiment through the link above.

Each user was “uniqued” using their IP address and their user agent string. I wrote a script to track each unique user through the four stages, and then ran that through graphviz:

… a little bit hard to read, and not terribly informative at first glance. I merged nodes with the same values on the same row (i.e. there are two users who started with “23”: These nodes were merges) in the graph below:result1

So there’s some more info to be gleaned here. Note that three people ended at 24 and 28 (respectively), whereas the other numbers all had one person end there.

Another interesting tidbit is that everyone who ended at 24 started from 23, 24, or 25, whereas for 28 (the other “significant” number) people started at 1, 11, and 21.

With a sample size of 13, I’m not sure how far I can read into it. But I can try.

That guy on the right who picked 47-47-47-48 tickles me. I think that was my computer science professor. (Did I mention that my CS professor was a participant? Fun stuff!) He even pointed out a bug in the problem description. He’s a pretty cool guy.

Also, what’s up with the comments? I implemented reCAPTCHA on the comment box a few weeks ago, and literally hundreds of comments are still coming through.

That said, if you want to make some money solving captchas there’s a lot of places you can work:

One of them (the cheapest) apparently charges $0.70/thousand. So if you can do one every six seconds (not unreasonable if you’re good), then you can do 10/minute = 600/hour = $0.42/hour.

In order to make minimum wage (here in Texas that’s $7.25/hour), you would have to solve 10,357 captchas per hour, or just under three per second.

So, my message to the world: Stop leaving spam comments. They’re a pain. And I will find a way to block you.

(Trivia: “CAPTCHA” apparently stands for “Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart.” It might be a backronym.)


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