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November 2, 2012

Why people don’t get Nate Silver



Probability is counterintuitive.

The idea that the chance of something happening doesn’t change is hard for us to wrap our heads around. Understandably so—if I tell you that you have a 70 percent chance of making a putt, most people would expect that after ten putts, seven will have gone in the hole. This, however, is not the case. 

That’s what’s hard to grasp about probability, the idea that one result has no effect on what happens in the future.

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Related to this great piece (a topic which Stefan totally beat me to, because I had a half-written, not-as-good take hiding in my drafts) is the rebuke he got from his public editor on Thursday. If you ask me, the New York Times’ public editor, Margaret Sullivan, totally should have run a statistical model on whether that column was a good idea.

— Ernie @ ShortFormBlog

A very smart take on the political journalism topic du jour.

(via gov)

9:17 // 1 year ago