### Brain Teasers

# A Problem With Pearls

Probability
Probability puzzles require you to weigh all the possibilities and pick the most likely outcome.

"I'm a very rich man, so I've decided to give you some of my fortune. Do you see this bag? I have 5001 pearls inside it. 2501 of them are white, and 2500 of them are black. No, I am not racist. I'll let you take out any number of pearls from the bag without looking. If you take out the same number of black and white pearls, I will reward you with a number of gold bars equivalent to the number of pearls you took."

How many pearls should you take out to give yourself a good number of gold bars while still retaining a good chance of actually getting them?

How many pearls should you take out to give yourself a good number of gold bars while still retaining a good chance of actually getting them?

### Hint

If you took out 2 pearls, you would have about a 50% chance of getting 2 gold bars. However, you can take even more pearls and still retain the 50% chance.### Answer

Take out 5000 pearls. If the remaining pearl is white, then you've won 5000 gold bars!Hide Hint Show Hint Hide Answer Show Answer

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