As it happens, this Golden Mean investigation came about almost by accident as an add-on to the real experiment which I devised for these sporty students. I asked them to determine their reaction time by seeing how quickly they could catch a 30cm rule dropped by a confederate: the distance and hence the time being easily recorded in cm or mm. If the rule falls further, it's because your reaction time is slower. <pedantry alert: nobody was dropping a 30cm ruler because the king of Lilliput was otherwise engaged that week>. It being science I required that this experiment be carried out a number of times to get a handle on how reproducible the findings were and I also got them to measure reaction times with the left and right hands. There was plenty of scope for hypothesis testing:
- Is reaction time in your left and right hands quicker, slower or same?
- Would that be reversed among the Southpaws?
- Are taller people with longer arms slower in the uptake?
- Are girls quicker than boys?