3 New Examples of The Monty Hall Problem

Don’t be stubborn: its The Monty Hall Problem. This is one of the least generally understood problems of all time. My hypothesis: the reason most people fail on The Monty Hall problem is that it isn’t straight, and it involves changing plans.

If you don’t know, the way this works is that you are on a game show and must find a prize behind one of three doors. You pick a door and then The Game Show Host reveals that the prize is not behind one of the two remaining doors. With due intellect your supposed to reason that it is always advisable two switch your selection.

What isn’t understood during the time the game show hosts open the door is that he will never open a door that has the prize in it. He will always open a null door. Vital information is encoded by the pact the game show host has with the producers and it moves in the transaction between the game show host and you. Think of it as the elements of America being encoded to the writing and voice of Stephen King. This explains why the probability space changes.

Example Number 1: You are a legally blind person looking for a disabled parking space. They come as the Os in X,X,O,X,X,O,X,X,O,… as repeated infinitely. Every third space is a disabled space. You pull into one but can’t see the markings below your car on the road. Immediately after you, The Game Show Host, Peter, pulls in right next to you - either on the left or right. Because you know that he isn’t disabled you also know that he will never park in a disabled spot. Peter has revealed the true probabilistic landscape of the parking lot. Understanding the repetition of the disabled parking spaces you restart the engine of your car and buffer out a move of one space in the opposite direction of where Peter has parked right next to you (and this is you switching your selection). Believe it or not you have probably seen this before, in real life.

Example Number 2: This example is a bit strange. You are a detective. The game show host has transformed into a cleaning clerk. This staff member has stolen something and hidden it in a closet. There are three. You need to guess which of three doors has hidden something in. You select one door, but you have the chance to ask the clerk, and you do. The clerk reveals a door with nothing behind it as suspected. Knowing the clerk will never reveal the door with the stolen something you change your door selection.

Example Number 3: You are signing up with a a username of your choice on a forum. You want the winning username but unfortunately you possess limited amounts of information about what this/that/it would be. You have the choice between a funny, crazy, and boring username. You choose the crazy username. Three weeks go by and you username isn’t cleared by the forum admin. You remark that this isn’t funny. You decide to then state, “I still want my original username, but if you give me the option change it to Boring Username I would like to”. This is now the conclusion of the Monty Hall Problem in action. You receive an email in reply that your username has been cleared with significant probability of success, and you are good to go.


Elias H.

Patient and Knowledgeable Liberal Arts Math Tutor

100+ hours
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