## Paradoxically…

Suppose there is a town with just one male barber; and that every man in the town keeps himself clean-shaven: some by shaving themselves, some by attending the barber. It seems reasonable to imagine that the barber obeys the following rule: He shaves all and only those men in town who do not shave themselves. Under this scenario, we can ask the following question: Does the barber shave himself?

From Epimenides’ Paradox to the Omnipotence Paradox, more fun-with-logic at “**Brain Twisting Paradoxes**.”

**As we return to first principles,** we might wish a carefully-reasoned Joyeux Anniversaire to Félix-Édouard-Justin-Émile Borel, a mathematician and pioneer of measure theory and its application to probability theory; he was born in Saint-Affrique on this date in 1871. Borel is perhaps best remembered by (if not for) his thought experiment demonstrating that a monkey hitting keys at random on a typewriter keyboard will– with absolute certainty– eventually type every book in the Bibliothèque Nationale (or, as oft repeated, every play in the works of Shakespeare, or…)– that is, **the infinite monkey theorem**.

*Borel **(image source)*

Written by (Roughly) Daily

January 7, 2011 at 1:01 am

Posted in Uncategorized

Tagged with Émile Borel, Baraber Paradox, brain twisters, Epimenides, Epimenides’ Paradox, Félix-Édouard-Justin-Émile Borel, history of mathematics, infinite monkey theorem, logic, logic puzzles, Mathematics, measure theory, Omnipotence Paradox, paradox, paradoxes, probability theory