Don't get me wrong: complex math does some serious work behind the scenes (so they tell me; I'll take their word for it), but you don't need to be a mathematician to understand the solution...at least on a superficial level.
The Monty Hall Problem gets its name from the host of an old TV game show called Let's Make a Deal. In the show, Monty offers a contestant a choice among three closed doors. Behind one is a new car; behind each of the other two is... I forget. Something less desirable than a new car. Maybe a goat. Yeah, I think that's it: each of the other two doors conceals a goat. (I know I could Google this but I am doing my best to write it down from memory.)
After the contestant makes his or her choice, Monty opens one of the unselected doors to reveal a goat. The car is either behind the contestant's choice or the only other remaining closed door. Then Monty asks whether the contestant wants to switch doors or stick with the original choice.
Question: Should the contestant switch? Does it make a difference to the odds of winning?
What do you think?
** The letters to the editor in the magazine that published the solution to the problem, Parade, got quite heated.