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Entry from July 25, 2011
“The dice have no memory”

“The dice have no memory” means that, while the dice usually follow the odds, the dice don’t always do so. For example, there might be a roll of double sixes; another roll of double sixes isn’t probable, but “the dice have no memory” of what was just rolled. The saying (cited in print since at least 1954) is popular in gambling, but has been used in mathematics and in the financial community.

A Wall Street version of “the dice have no memory” is “A stock doesn’t know where it has been.”

Fundamentals of College Mathematics
By John Clark Brixey and Richard Vernon Andree
New York, NY: Holt
1954
Pg. 561:
The dice have no memory.

The Simplicity of Science
By Stanley D. Beck
Garden City, NY: Doubleday
1959
Pg. 99:
Dice have no memory, and probability is not based on a retroactive “law of averages.”

Elements of Mathematics
By J. Houston Banks
Boston, MA: Allyn and Bacon
1961
Pg. 333:
It has been aptly said that “dice have no memory.”

Logic by Way of Set Theory
By Henry Ehlers
New York, NY: Holt, Rinehart and Winston
1968
Pg. 329:
Hence, the adage “The dice have no memory.”

April 1979, Changing Times (The Kiplinger Magazine), pg. 46, col. 1
Now note two important facts: The dice have no memory, and the odds work out only over thousands of throws.

9 November 1980, Los Angeles (CA) Times, pg. S5 ad:
The pitt bosses have a little saying to explain this-“The dice have no memory.”

1 December 1981, Palm Beach (FL) Post, “Earthwork Reveals Unusual Astronomy” by Frances Frank Marcus (New York Times), South Extra, pg. 5, col. 1:
He said chances of the earthwork’s solar alignment being “sheer coincidence” are remote: “It’s like shooting craps. The dice have no memory. Probability is what we use constantly.”

OCLC WorldCat record
Dice have no memory : observations on money moving around the world
Author: William Bonner
Publisher: Hoboken, N.J. : Wiley, 2011.
Edition/Format:  Book : English
Summary: “A look back at the modern financial markets through the eyes of Bill Bonner Since first publishing Hulbert’s Financial Digest in 1979, Bill Bonner has taken an honest look at the challenges facing the U.S. economy. Ultimately, whether or not he was proven right or wrong, he always wrote with clarity and conviction. And, in doing so, he developed a following of 250,000 loyal readers. Dice Have No Memory: Observations on Money Moving Around the World is a collection of his best writings, along with new material that gives context to his columns, while offering insights into what changes have occurred since their original publication. Details the evolution of the U.S. and global financial markets with wit and wisdom Shows readers how to live well even in uncertain times Other titles by Bonner: Empire of Debt: The Rise of an Epic Financial Crisis and Financial Reckoning Day: Surviving the Soft Depression of the 21st Century Providing both intriguing insight and evergreen advice, Dice Have No Memory is a rousing look at Bill Bonner’s literary economic perspective, global market analysis, and contrarian investment ideas”—

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityBanking/Finance/Insurance • Monday, July 25, 2011 • Permalink

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