This remember covers of 36,525 days, a rudimentary maths approach would say that 23/365 (6.3%) would indicate around 2300 people would be required, probability however isn’t rudimentary maths and instead the answer is that just 226 people are required until a 50/50 match is probable.
Clearly therefore name and date of birth is far from satisfactory as a match criteria if we are dealing with anything other than common names.
Ideally you should get 10 to 12 groups of 23 or more people so you have enough different groups to compare.
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You could try rolling three 10-sided dice and five six-sided dice 100 times each and record the results of each roll.
Calculate the mathematical probability of getting a sum higher than 18 for each combination of dice when rolling them 100 times.
Procedure • For each group of 23 or more birthdays that you collected, sort through them to see if there are any birthday matches in each group.
• How many of your groups have two or more people with the same birthday?
Based on the birthday paradox, how many groups would you expect to find that have two people with the same birthday? If you use a group of 366 people—the greatest number of days a year can have—the odds that two people have the same birthday are 100 percent (excluding February 29 leap year birthdays), but what do you think the odds are in a group of 60 or 75 people?
• Extra: Rolling dice is a great way to investigate probability.
The third person then has 20 comparisons, the fourth person has 19 and so on.