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Thursday, September 28, 2006

How to Beat Anyone at Rock Paper Scissors

Back in elementary school, you probably played Rock Paper Scissors (RPS) in a haphazard fashion without much sense of strategy. Well, it turns out that there's actually an RPS competition coming up with a $10,000 prize at stake, and there are a lot of tricks you can use to beat your opponent. For instance, statistically, scissors is less likely to be played (by about 3%) in competition so if aren't sure what move you want to make next, go with scissors.

I found this next trick fascinating:
When playing against someone who asks you to remind them about the rules, take the opportunity to subtly "suggest a throw" as you explain to them by physically showing them the throw you want them to play. ie "Paper beats Rock, Rock beats scissors (show scissors), Scissors (show scissors again) beats paper." Believe it or not, when people are not paying attention their subconscious mind will often accept your "suggestion". A very similar technique is used by magicians to get someone to take a specific card from the deck.
Goes to show how powerful unconscious cues can be.

(via MAKE)


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