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algorithm – The dessert drawback (blind poll remaining blind if non-unanimous)


A bunch of (probably over-polite) individuals have simply completed their meal at a restaurant. One of them asks, “Does anybody need dessert?” The desk goes quiet.

Some of the individuals may need dessert. But no person desires to say “sure” first, in case they’re the one one, and appear like a pig whereas making everybody else look forward to them to eat alone. Equally, although, no person desires to say “no” first, as a result of it’d put a number of individuals who have not spoken but off from saying a truthful “sure”.

So the query is – is there any blind poll system that has the property that:

  • During the voting course of, no person is aware of what anybody has voted.
  • If the vote is unanimously sure, everybody is aware of that.
  • If the vote isn’t unanimously sure, everybody is aware of that, however no person is aware of who voted what or what number of sure votes there have been (or even when there have been any or not)

And doesn’t require an exterior arbiter or programmed system?

The basic “black balling” technique would not work, as a result of though the presence of a black ball within the bag exhibits that the vote isn’t unanimously sure, when the bag is revealed it’s nonetheless attainable to see if there are white balls current (ie, somebody did vote sure)

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