Monty Hall and Heroin Addiction

Meanwhile, the big Monty Hall book is slowly coming together. It seems like every day I discover new technical articles on the subject. Recently I thought to search through the PubMed database, looking for any articles that might have eluded the various other searches I have done. Most of the articles that came up were ones I already had in my file, but there were a few others that were new to me. I quickly rounded them up.

Then I noticed an article entitled, “Eye Movement Responses of Heroin Addicts and Controls During Word and Object Recognition,” published in the journal Neuropharmacology in 1975. This, recall, in a search on “Monty Hall.” I was intrigued. The abstract was little help; it described certain experiments on the sensory capacity of heroin addicts. So why did my search turn up this paper?

And that’s when I noticed that the first author on the paper was named R. A. Monty. The second? R. J. Hall. Mystery solved.


  1. #1 Valhar2000
    December 19, 2007

    Oh man! It would have been so cool if you had been able to apply insights form the Monty Hall problem to neurology…

    Well, other surprising applications no doubt will surface, in the fullness of time.

  2. #2 BobbyEarle
    December 19, 2007

    Any idea when the book might be finished? You would not believe what happened at my brother’s place over Thanksgiving. I brought up the Monty Hall problem as a prelude to a discussion about the upcoming presidential election (things are not quite what they appear to be, etc).

    When I told the assembled family that the odds of winning after the switch was 2/3…hoo, boy!

    I think I am still in the will. I hope.

    I would love a signed copy, Jason!

  3. #3 Jason Rosenhouse
    December 19, 2007


    That was exactly my reaction when I saw the citation! As for surprising applications, just wait for the book.


    Theoretically the first draft of the book is due January 1. I’m not likely to make that deadline, though hopefully I won’t miss it by much. I don’t know when it will actually be published, though.

    As for your family squabble, that happens a lot! As I discuss early on in the book, what is remarkable about the Monty Hall problem is not simply that people find it difficult to grasp, but that they get really angry about it when you try to explain it properly.

  4. #4 Don Cates
    December 20, 2007

    An illustration of the MHP that I have never seen but that I think would be very effective is this.
    Let Monty give you two choices:
    1) you pick one door and he opens another door with a crappy prize.
    2) you pick two doors and he opens one with a crappy prize.
    ‘1’ is equivalent to not switching, ‘2’ is equivalent to switching.

  5. #5 Dave Briggs
    December 21, 2007

    That’s searches and search engines for you! I think someone could make a cool Million $s if they could publish a book on the most absurd, ridiculous and ludicrous returns people have gotten during searches! Those search algorithms certainly have an astronomical mystique to them sometimes!
    Dave Briggs :~)

  6. #6 JimV
    December 21, 2007

    One last time(in case you haven’t already seen this):

  7. #7 Kaven
    December 24, 2007

    happy solstice everyone!

    may the days get longer, not shorter!

  8. #8 kevin
    December 24, 2007
  9. #9 Dom
    January 4, 2008

    This is only a little off-topic. Have you ever noticed that when Solomon Golomb publishes papers with Steven G. Bloom, they sign their names, “S.Golomb and S.G. Bloom”. Can you guess why? Hint: Golomb likes word games.

  10. #10 Serkan ÇUBUKÇU
    May 10, 2008

    Oh man! It would have been so cool if you had been able to apply insights form the Monty Hall problem to neurology…

  11. #11 Heroin Addiction
    January 8, 2009

    Heroin has a ruthless consequence on the human being and is a dominant depressant that is extremely addictive. Heroin addiction takes life and ruins families across the nation every day.

  12. #13 D_E_R_M_A_N
    February 14, 2009


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