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Thread: Guess the Post Count

  1. #1
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    Guess the Post Count

    It's right about 7:45 Saturday morning UTC.

    The current post count is 2,102,003 (including this one).

    One week from now, what will it be?

    Guesses to be submitted by 7:45 UTC Monday (so 48 hours from now), winner is the person with the smallest absolute deviation from the actual post count at 7:45 UTC next Saturday.

    Flooding the board with new posts shortly before the deadline if your guess is too high, or deleting your old posts if your guess is too low, are perfectly legal tactics for the purpose of winning this game. However, both of these could potentially incur sanctions for violation of board rules.
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    (Pulls plug on CQ server) No change.
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    I wasn't paying attention, so I didn't get an accurate post count at the official stop time. However, it is currently 2,103,420, which is 1,417 more than Noclevername's guess. As that was the only entry, it is the winner.

    Dating the board the same way we date the universe, I can infer that this board was created out of nothing some time in 1984.

    Same deal this week - what is the post count at 7:45 UTC next Saturday (October 12)? Guesses due by 7:45 UTC Monday (October 7).
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    2,104,484
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    42?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sarawak View Post
    Dating the board the same way we date the universe, I can infer that this board was created out of nothing some time in 1984.
    You mean it is no longer nothing?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sarawak View Post
    Dating the board the same way we date the universe, I can infer that this board was created out of nothing some time in 1984.
    On the other hand, there are threads everywhere you look and on large enough scales they are all pretty much about the same things. So don't we need an inflationary period to explain that?

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    Quote Originally Posted by caveman1917 View Post
    On the other hand, there are threads everywhere you look and on large enough scales they are all pretty much about the same things. So don't we need an inflationary period to explain that?
    You're right. I reran the numbers, and found the board was created on Monday.
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    I took the reading a bit late, but it was 2,104,574 when I did look. That means my guess is off by 90. LookingSkyward's guess was off by 2,104,532, and came in late anyway. So that makes me the winner. Given that my reading was a bit late, it's possible my deviation was smaller than 90.

    I need to revise my estimate of the creation of the board to around the middle of 1982. I leave it to caveman1917 to work out the age taking an early inflationary period into account.

    Same rules this week, guesses due Monday 7:45 UTC, for the post count Saturday 7:45 UTC. It will be more interesting if there is more than one guess posted by the deadline.
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  10. #10
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    My guess is 2,105,877.

    Guess are due 17 hours from now, at 7:45 UTC Monday.

    If no one else guesses, then I win by default.

    If someone else guesses, can that person also play the role of timekeeper? This involves noting the post count at 7:45 UTC on Saturday. I haven't been particularly good about noting the count at the correct time, but as there was only one valid guess in each of the two rounds so far, it didn't really matter.
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sarawak View Post
    If someone else guesses, can that person also play the role of timekeeper? This involves noting the post count at 7:45 UTC on Saturday. I haven't been particularly good about noting the count at the correct time, but as there was only one valid guess in each of the two rounds so far, it didn't really matter.
    cron a page download at that time

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    I'll take 2,105,876 so essentially we're now betting on whether the post count will be higher or lower than the expected value (assuming you got your guess by extrapolating).

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    Quote Originally Posted by caveman1917 View Post
    cron a page download at that time
    Forgot how to use cron, it's been so long. I guess I'd also have to figure out how to do a page download from a command line.

    Maybe I'll experiment.

    Quote Originally Posted by caveman1917 View Post
    I'll take 2,105,876 so essentially we're now betting on whether the post count will be higher or lower than the expected value (assuming you got your guess by extrapolating).
    Yes, I used about the simplest technique one could. OK, maybe LookingSkyward had an even simpler technique. So that is indeed what we're betting on, because, well, there's certainly nothing we can do to influence the outcome . . .
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sarawak View Post
    Forgot how to use cron, it's been so long. I guess I'd also have to figure out how to do a page download from a command line.
    wget should do the trick i think. I don't know the syntax by heart but it should be easy to look it up.

    Yes, I used about the simplest technique one could.
    I'm assuming linear regression? This might be interesting to compare to other methods. It'll have to be for next week though, got too much work to do now before the deadline.

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    Quote Originally Posted by caveman1917 View Post
    wget should do the trick i think. I don't know the syntax by heart but it should be easy to look it up.
    Ah, I remember wget.

    On Mac OS X these days, but I'm pretty sure I could install it if it's not already there, these things being BSD-based. Installing gnuplot was something of an adventure.

    Quote Originally Posted by caveman1917 View Post
    I'm assuming linear regression? This might be interesting to compare to other methods. It'll have to be for next week though, got too much work to do now before the deadline.
    I would have just called it extrapolation, assume the future posts/hour are equal to the historical (since the start of this game). This is different than linear regression with time as the X variable, if that's what you mean. Further assuming that that is what you mean, I'm not sure it meets all the assumptions behind linear regression. Specifically, I am concerned that it might qualify as a "spurious" regression. But it's after midnight here, and I'm too tired to think about it.

    Tuesday is Hari Raya Haji, maybe I'll think about it then. Thinking about spurious regression is part of the traditional Hari Raya Haji celebration, isn't it?
    Last edited by Sarawak; 2013-Oct-16 at 03:23 PM.
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    I was too much occupied witnessing the glorious victory of New Zealand over Australia to notice the post count, but it was 2,105,880 well before the official recording time. So I think that makes me the winner.
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    Guesses for this Saturday due at 7:45 UTC today. My guess is 2,107,087.

    My current estimate, based on the total post count and current rate of posting, is that the board was created sometime in 1981. I leave the adjustment for inflation to caveman1917.
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    2,106,347 a guess from me!

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    Well over 2,107,000 at the designated time, Sarawak wins. (chrissy's guess was after the deadline anyway.)

    The big board bang is now estimated to have taken place late in 1983.
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    Guess the post count at 7:45 UTC on November 2. Guesses due at 7:45 UTC on October 28.

    I guess 2,108,792.
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  21. #21
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    2 108 793

  22. #22
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    2,108,800.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Swift View Post
    23
    I was expecting BEER as an answer.

  25. #25
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    Sarawak asked me to announce the results: Post count is: 2,109,147.

    I was the closest, but no-one has won.

    My post count guess for next week is: 2,109,600.

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by chrissy View Post
    Sarawak asked me to announce the results: Post count is: 2,109,147.

    I was the closest, but no-one has won.
    You have won, as per the OP: the winner is the one with the smallest absolute deviation from the actual post count.

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    chrissy has also won for next week, having the only guess in by the deadline.
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  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by caveman1917 View Post
    You have won, as per the OP: the winner is the one with the smallest absolute deviation from the actual post count.
    I didn't want to declare myself as a winner as I was judging. :/

  29. #29
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    Based on chrissy's reported count, I revise my estimate of the age of the board to 28.29 years, meaning it came into existence on July 19, 1985.
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  30. #30
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    Taking a reading more than 4.5 hours late, the count is 2,110,827. Which means chrissy, the holder of the only guess this week, wins, with an absolute deviation of 1,227. Probably less, because some of those posts most likely came within the last 4.5 hours.
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