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Can you solve the pirate riddle? - Alex Gendler

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It’s a good day to be a pirate. Amaro and his four mateys – Bart, Charlotte, Daniel, and Eliza have struck gold – a chest with 100 coins. But now, they must divvy up the booty according to the pirate code — and pirate code is notoriously complicated. Can you help come up with the distribution that Amaro should propose to make sure he lives to tell the tale? Alex Gendler shows how.

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TED-Ed Animations feature the words and ideas of educators brought to life by professional animators. Are you an educator or animator interested in creating a TED-Ed Animation? Nominate yourself here »

Meet The Creators

  • Educator Alex Gendler
  • Director Outis
  • Associate Producer Jessica Ruby
  • Content Producer Gerta Xhelo
  • Editorial Producer Alex Rosenthal
  • Narrator Addison Anderson
  • See more
Additional Resources for you to Explore
A longer discussion of the Pirate Game, its counterintuitive results, and extended versions with more pirates can all be found in this article. The Pirate Game is an example of the ultimatum game. This seemingly simple experimental scenario has many implications for economics and politics, as well as anthropology and evolutionary psychology.


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About TED-Ed Animations

TED-Ed Animations feature the words and ideas of educators brought to life by professional animators. Are you an educator or animator interested in creating a TED-Ed Animation? Nominate yourself here »

Meet The Creators

  • Educator Alex Gendler
  • Director Outis
  • Associate Producer Jessica Ruby
  • Content Producer Gerta Xhelo
  • Editorial Producer Alex Rosenthal
  • Narrator Addison Anderson
  • See more