### Is 17 the most random number between 1 and 20?

Monday, 9 April 2007 07:38**pne**

A couple of days ago, I asked people to pick a number between 1 and 20 (supposed to be inclusive, though perhaps that wasn't quite clear), in order to find out whether 17 is the most random number.

Turns out that indeed, more people picked 17 than any other number: 12 out of 68, or 17.6%. The runner-up was 7, with 8 out of 68, or 11.8%. Most of the other numbers scored 1 or 3 votes.

Since the average number of votes for each number, if the 68 people had truly picked at random, would have been 3.4 if 1 and 20 were counted, or 3.8 if they weren't, having 3 be the most common number of votes is consistent with that. Interesting, then, that 7 and 17 scored so many more votes.

## no subject

Date: Monday, 9 April 2007 09:07 (UTC)blue-hours-too.livejournal.com3, 7 and 11 do, so does 13.

## no subject

Date: Thursday, 26 March 2015 23:46 (UTC)## no subject

Date: Monday, 9 April 2007 11:47 (UTC)diffrentcolours## no subject

Date: Monday, 9 April 2007 13:23 (UTC)pne.livejournal.com## no subject

Date: Monday, 9 April 2007 13:47 (UTC)diffrentcolours## no subject

Date: Monday, 9 April 2007 14:20 (UTC)spodlife## no subject

Date: Monday, 9 April 2007 14:12 (UTC)ubykhlives.livejournal.com- Aside from unity, the numbers that were chosen the fewest are all divisible by five, the number of fingers on one hand.

- The five numbers that were chosen more than the median number of times (median number of times selected = 3) are all odd: 17, 7, 19, 11, 3.

- Moreover, these five numbers are all prime.

The fact that the two highest choices both contain a seven might be a statistical artefact; perhaps "select a number from 1 to 100" would be a more useful exercise to determine whether there's a bias towards the digit 7.

## no subject

Date: Monday, 9 April 2007 15:21 (UTC)arthur-sc-king.livejournal.comI can't explain it, but I suspect that when asked to pick a "random" number, most people would shy away from composite numbers.

And, of course, now that I'm looking up at

ubykhlives's comment for the first time, I see that my suspicions played out with this poll, at least....## no subject

Date: Monday, 9 April 2007 15:22 (UTC)bluewingedcat.livejournal.com## no subject

Date: Monday, 9 April 2007 19:56 (UTC)nyssa.livejournal.com