We just wrapped up the testing described here. Thanks to Leroy Casper Hunter and Leeloo Leeloo Mountain for helping out. There have been competing ideas out there on how other miners affect your hit rate, so I figured we'd try to some formal science on it.

To sum it up, this was designed like I would any scientific experiment at work to give this data a bit more rigor to have actual testable data. The three of us each dropped en/ore at the exact same coordinates with about a 5 minute buffer between us. Leeloo went first, then Casper, then myself. If someone caught up to the person ahead of them, we typically gave at least a minute or two buffer if not closer to 5 minutes. These were all done with F-101's with no attachments, etc. so everything was standardized for depth, search radius, etc. There were 30 drops for each type, or 60 total drops per person.

Hit rate

The first miner had26.7%HR, second was6.7%, and third was5.0%:

As you increase the number of miners (primarily having more than one miner dropping on recently mined areas), hit rate significantly decreases. For the formal research statistics end of things, I used a logistic regression with hit rate as a response, and miner number as the independent variable. One way to look the above graph is if the confidence intervals overlap, you cannot say those average hit rates are significantly different (i.e., they are only numerically different due to randomness). The confidence intervals basically mean that if you repeated this study 100s of times or had a much higher sample size (maybe 10k PED worth), we can say with 95% confidence that the "true average" falls within those limits without needing to actually do that much sampling.

Likewise, the logistic regression line had a negative slope (-1.2), and was alsostatistically significant p = 0.000982, also confirming that as you add more miners, hit rate goes down. P-values under 0.05 are generally the threshold for significance, so there's next to no question that we ruled out randomness in this experiment and the differences we saw are due to the number of miners.

Hit rate however, was not zero for the 2nd or 3rd miners. Some claims could have been missed by the previous person because they found a claim closer where they dropped even though both were within their search radius. Another reason is claims "respawning". As the third person in the chain, I did have one claim appear right next to me and not on the edge of the radius as you'd expect with the former example.

TT returns

I also analyzed the TT returns from these runs since it was possible claim size might be different depending on your hit rate. This gets a little trickier to analyze because that data doesn't fit a normal distribution and are instead bimodal (a bunch of zeros for the NRFs, and another peak for actual claims). I won't get into the nuts and bolts of that one, but in order from miner 1 to 3's total TT: Leeloo 33.48, Casper 12.42, and myself 16.55 PED. There would be issues trying to graph that up due to the non-normal data, but I analyzed the total PEC with a zero-inflated poisson regression to take care of those. The short of it was that Leeloo's average TT per drop was significantly higher than Casper (p = 0.04155) or myself (p = 0.00342). Casper's and my TT per drop were not significantly different (p = 0.1988).

Conclusions

Essentially, TT returns declined with declining hit rate as more than one person mined an area. This go a good ways towards settling the question of whether other miners affect your hit rate or TT.

There are a few followups mentioned in previous threads now that we found there is a difference due to other miners:

- Does the first miner only deplete claims at the depth they hit at, or at any depth within the radius (i.e., due claims exist in a disc, or cylinder)? This could be done in quick succession with at least two people at the same coordinates again. It would need to have enough range in depth treatments to not overlap much, so maybe like 200, 500, and 800m.

- What is the rough respawn rate? This could be done by repeating this again, but instead of 5 minute intervals, spread it out by increasing wait time of 30 minutes, 1 hour, 2 hours, etc. for each person to see when it's "safe" to mine the area again.

- Do others in the same zone affect your mining if you don't overlap drops? No need for staggering here again, just do 30+ drops in the same general vicinity and compare HR again.

I would like to take another weekend to test either 1 or 2 now that we have this wrapped up. I'm thinking March 9, but I'll see what people think about what we have so far before setting up the next round of testing.