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Fooled by Randomness

The subtleties of randomness

July 7, 2009

The WSJ has printed one of the best "fooled by randomness" pieces I've seen in quite a while, titled "The Triumph of the Random." This one uses streaks in sports as a central metaphor, with DiMaggio's 56-game hitting streak as exhibit A. It presents an immediate disclaimer: Recent academic studies have questioned whether DiMaggio’s streak […]

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QOTD: anecdotal evidence edition

April 21, 2009

Few things bother me more than the use of random or one-off stories as evidence. Reasoning like that does absolutely nothing to sway me, and I'll probably just mumble something about Taleb's Fooled by Randomness. In a somewhat related post, Megan McArdle put it succinctly: The plural of "anecdote" is not "data". Brilliant.

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