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Scholars Day 2005, Wednesday, April 13

Detecting Fraud Using Probability and the Powerful Digit 1

Everyone has heard the song “One is a lonely number” but in 1881 Simon Newcomb found the number one to be a powerful digit that defies probability rules when appearing in natural occurring data. If Simon Newcomb discovered this phenomenon, why is it called Benford’s law? How and why did the number one become so powerful and if it can detect fraud through probability, can it then predict the winning lottery numbers? All of these questions and more will be discussed in this presentation.

Presenter: Karen Wells (Graduate Student)
Topic: Math
Location: 102 Edwards
Time: 11:05 am (Session II)