Fifty Fifty Moose and Chuck write:
On 10/28/2015 6:46 PM, Chuck Norcutt wrote:
<<Well, it surely seems that 1/2 of them have fallen bottom side up.
<<<<Odd that, coins seem to do the same thing. :-)
Are you both really so sure falling Sugar Maple leaves are statistically
equivalent to tossing a fair coin? Many aerodynamic and structural variables
affect their falling one side up or the other,
but they all start in one orientation perhaps skewing the distribution. Haven't
you observed some floating down in calm conditions remaining red side up? A
stiff breeze would likely randomize the falling
but under calm conditions is it not reasonable to hypothesize a slight
preponderance of the red side up? So how to test: Perhaps mark off a fixed
area and count all the leaves in each orientation.
A back of the envelope 2X2 table (df thus=1) would dictate a chi square of
about 3.9 to assure p<0.05 testing for a 45/55 distribution vs 50/50. That
would take roughly 400 leaves. Leaf morphology changes a bit with water
availability and especially light and further changes with advancing cold. How
that affects aerodynamics and tumbling, I don't know.
I can see this morphing into a Ph.D. thesis or better yet a project for a kid
or grand kid.
Fifty-five, forty-five, Mike
Themed Olympus Photo Exhibition: http://www.tope.nl/