April 30
Elliot Glazer, Harvard University
Paradoxes of perfectly small sets

We define a set of real numbers to be perfectly small if it has perfectly many disjoint translates. Such sets have a strong intuitive claim to being probabilistically negligible, yet no non-trivial measure assigns them all a value of 0. We will prove from a moderate amount of choice that any total extension of Lebesgue measure concentrates on a perfectly small set, suggesting that for any such measure, translation-invariance fails 'as badly as possible.' From the ideas of this proof, we will also derive analogues of well-known paradoxes of randomness, specifically Freiling's symmetry paradox and the infinite prisoner hat puzzle, in terms of perfectly small sets. Finally, we discuss how these results constrain what a paradox-free set theory can look like and some related open questions.

A note on paradoxes