It’s hard to compare people on the basis of a date, let alone estimate the total number of people available for you to date.
And we haven’t addressed the biggest problem of them all: that someone who appears great on a date doesn’t necessarily make a good partner.
The overall probability is therefore made up of several terms: Let’s work out the terms one by one.
If X is among the first people you date, then tough luck, you have missed your chance. Therefore, the first terms of equation 1 are all zero.
In other words, you pick X if the highest-ranked among the first people turned up within the first people. In other words, you pick X if the highest-ranked among the first people turned up within the first people. If , so there are only five people, the only value of for which the two inequalities hold is , which is 40% of : So you should discard the first two people and then go for the next one that tops the previous ones.