100 balls

Question:

You are given an urn with 100 balls (50 black and 50 white). You pick balls from urn one by one without replacements until all the balls are out. A black followed by a white or a white followed by a black is “a colour change”. Calculate the expected number of colour changes if the balls are being picked randomly from the urn.

.

.

C

A

P

T

A

I

N

I

N

T

E

R

V

I

E

W

.

.

Solution:

There are 99 positions. Let X_i be a random variable taking value 1 if i_th position has a colour change and zero otherwise.

We have to find expected value of E[X_1 + X_2 + … + X_99]

Since all X_i are equivalent, the answer is 99*E[X_i]

E[X_i] = ((50/100)*(50/99)+(50/100)*(50/99)) = 50/99

So, Answer is 50.

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