Two Boxes

ExpectantlyIronic

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#1
There are two boxes labeled Box A and Box B, respectively. One or both will contain money. You have to choose whether to take the contents of both or just Box B. Here's the kicker. A "Predictor" who is almost-certainly infallible at predicting the future (the Predictor is maybe God or a God-like machine from the future) will have guessed beforehand which option you will choose. If the Predictor thinks you will take both, Box A will have 1,000 dollars in it, and Box B will have nothing. If the Predictor thinks you will take Box B, it will have a million dollars in it in addition to the 1,000 in Box A. So do you take both boxes, or just Box B?


Edit: This is called "Newcomb's problem" btw.
 
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ExpectantlyIronic

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#3
Choosing just Box A is not an option, but if it were, it would have $1,000 in it.

Edit: Oh, I see. You're wondering what the predictor would do if you said just Box A, contrary to the rules. Clever... :)
 
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Wade8813

Registered Member
#4
Newcomb's dumb, because the amount of money inside can't change based on what I choose (his scenario would require that it does).
 

ExpectantlyIronic

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#5
Then you would take both boxes, I assume. I actually lean towards choosing Box B, due to the appeal of determinism. The Predictor may have worked out my thought process in advance.
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The scenario actually doesn't assume that the amount of money would change, in any case.
 
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#6
I choose box b. If ultimate predictor is right, I made $1,000,000. else, I proved it wrong. I can't lose.
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Newcomb's dumb, because the amount of money inside can't change based on what I choose (his scenario would require that it does).
money doesn't change. If the machine predicts that you decided that you would open box b, and would later open box a for whatever reason, box b would have nothing.
 
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#8
I'd go for box B.
But what if the predictor was wrong? What happens to the money in both boxes?
If the predictor was wrong by saying you would only open box b when you would in fact open both, then b box has 1,000,000, and a box has 1,000.

If the predictor was wrong by saying you would open both, when you would only open 1, then a box would still have 1000 while b box would have nothing.
 

ExpectantlyIronic

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#9
The contents of the boxes can either be:

Box A: $1,000; Box B: $0
or...

Box A: $1,000; Box B: $1,000,000
So if the Predictor thinks you would choose both, and you choose both, you get $1,000. If the Predictor thinks you would choose both, and you choose B, you get nothing. If the Predictor thinks you would choose B, and you choose both, you get $1,001,000. If the Predictor thinks you would choose B, and you choose B, you get $1,000,000.
 
#10
\So if the Predictor thinks you would choose both, and you choose both, you get $1,000. If the Predictor thinks you would choose both, and you choose B, you get nothing. If the Predictor thinks you would choose B, and you choose both, you get $1,001,000. If the Predictor thinks you would choose B, and you choose B, you get $1,000,000.
And no matter what the predictor predicts, if you only choose A, you get $1000