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**MathsIsFun****Administrator**- Registered: 2005-01-21
- Posts: 7,684

The formula of procrastination, according to Dr. Piers Steel of the University of Calgary, is:

**Utility = E x V / ΓD **

Where:

Utility = the desirability of the task

E = the expectancy a person has of succeeding with the task

V = the value of completing the task

Γ (Gamma) = the tasks immediacy or availability

D = the person's sensitivity to delay

More details: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/01/070110090851.htm

It sounds really interesting, and I intend to read it ... later sometime.

"The physicists defer only to mathematicians, and the mathematicians defer only to God ..." - Leon M. Lederman

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**mathsyperson****Moderator**- Registered: 2005-06-22
- Posts: 4,900

If you haven't read it yet, then how do you know the formula?

Just to check, the idea is that you plug all the numbers for a task into that formula, and the person will do the task if the Utility is above a certain threshold?

I don't see why Γ goes on the bottom though. Surely as you get nearer to a deadline for a task, the Utility would go up?

Why did the vector cross the road?

It wanted to be normal.

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**Ricky****Moderator**- Registered: 2005-12-04
- Posts: 3,791

Is it just me who hates pseudo math such as this? To me, this doesn't sound interesting at all, just like some professor had no original ideas on what to study but still wanted to write a paper, and so he came up with junk like this.

Maybe I should read the paper though first...

"In the real world, this would be a problem. But in mathematics, we can just define a place where this problem doesn't exist. So we'll go ahead and do that now..."

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