The founder of FiveThirtyEight.com challenges myths about predictions in subjects ranging from the financial market and weather to sports and politics, profiling the world of prediction to explain how readers can distinguish true signals from hype, in a report that also reveals the sources and societal costs of wrongful predictions.
A New York Times Bestseller An Economist Best Book of 2015 "The most important book on decision making since Daniel Kahneman's Thinking, Fast and Slow." —Jason Zweig, The Wall Street Journal Everyone would benefit from seeing further into the future, whether buying stocks, crafting policy, launching a new product, or simply planning the week’s meals. Unfortunately, people tend to be terrible forecasters. As Wharton professor Philip Tetlock showed in a landmark 2005 study, even experts’ predictions are only slightly better than chance. However, an important and underreported conclusion of that study was that some experts do have real foresight, and Tetlock has spent the past decade trying to figure out why. What makes some people so good? And can this talent be taught? In Superforecasting, Tetlock and coauthor Dan Gardner offer a masterwork on prediction, drawing on decades of research and the results of a massive, government-funded forecasting tournament. The Good Judgment Project involves tens of thousands of ordinary people—including a Brooklyn filmmaker, a retired pipe installer, and a former ballroom dancer—who set out to forecast global events. Some of the volunteers have turned out to be astonishingly good. They’ve beaten other benchmarks, competitors, and prediction markets. They’ve even beaten the collective judgment of intelligence analysts with access to classified information. They are "superforecasters." In this groundbreaking and accessible book, Tetlock and Gardner show us how we can learn from this elite group. Weaving together stories of forecasting successes (the raid on Osama bin Laden’s compound) and failures (the Bay of Pigs) and interviews with a range of high-level decision makers, from David Petraeus to Robert Rubin, they show that good forecasting doesn’t require powerful computers or arcane methods. It involves gathering evidence from a variety of sources, thinking probabilistically, working in teams, keeping score, and being willing to admit error and change course. Superforecasting offers the first demonstrably effective way to improve our ability to predict the future—whether in business, finance, politics, international affairs, or daily life—and is destined to become a modern classic. From the Hardcover edition.
Chance continues to govern our lives in the 21st Century. From the genes we inherit and the environment into which we are born, to the lottery ticket we buy at the local store, much of life is a gamble. In business, education, travel, health, and marriage, we take chances in the hope of obtaining something better. Chance colors our lives with uncertainty, and so it is important to examine it and try to understand about how it operates in a number of different circumstances. Such understanding becomes simpler if we take some time to learn a little about probability, since probability is the natural language of uncertainty. This second edition of Chance Rules again recounts the story of chance through history and the various ways it impacts on our lives. Here you can read about the earliest gamblers who thought that the fall of the dice was controlled by the gods, as well as the modern geneticist and quantum theory researcher trying to integrate aspects of probability into their chosen speciality. Example included in the first addition such as the infamous Monty Hall problem, tossing coins, coincidences, horse racing, birthdays and babies remain, often with an expanded discussion, in this edition. Additional material in the second edition includes, a probabilistic explanation of why things were better when you were younger, consideration of whether you can use probability to prove the existence of God, how long you may have to wait to win the lottery, some court room dramas, predicting the future, and how evolution scores over creationism. Chance Rules lets you learn about probability without complex mathematics.
The Signal and the Noise …in 30 Minutes is the essential guide to quickly understanding the fundamental components of prediction outlined in Nate Silver’s bestselling book, The Signal and the Noise: Why So Many Predictions Fail ¬– but Some Don’t. In The Signal and the Noise bestselling author, political analyst, and statistician Nate Silver investigates the fundamentals of forecasting and answers why too much information can be misleading. Exploring a variety of fields, ranging from politics to poker to Wall Street and global warming, Silver explores why some forecasts are successful and, perhaps more telling, why so many fail. Stressing the importance of acknowledging personal bias, Silver posits that better forecasters possess a superior understanding of uncertainty and are driven by truth and humility while overconfidence can lead to failure. Presenting a framework for what constitutes a good forecast, Silver provides insight and tools for understanding how to successfully utilize Big Data and decipher meaningful signals from random noise.
This title brings together work on embodiment, action, and the predictive mind. At the core is the vision of human minds as prediction machines - devices that constantly try to stay one step ahead of the breaking waves of sensory stimulation, by actively predicting the incoming flow. In every situation we encounter, that complex prediction machinery is already buzzing, proactively trying to anticipate the sensory barrage. The book shows in detail how this strange but potent strategy of self-anticipation ushers perception, understanding, and imagination simultaneously onto the cognitive stage.
A friendly and accessible approach to applying statistics in the real world With an emphasis on critical thinking, The Art of Data Analysis: How to Answer Almost Any Question Using Basic Statistics presents fun and unique examples, guides readers through the entire data collection and analysis process, and introduces basic statistical concepts along the way. Leaving proofs and complicated mathematics behind, the author portrays the more engaging side of statistics and emphasizes its role as a problem-solving tool. In addition, light-hearted case studies illustrate the application of statistics to real data analyses, highlighting the strengths and weaknesses of commonly used techniques. Written for the growing academic and industrial population that uses statistics in everyday life, The Art of Data Analysis: How to Answer Almost Any Question Using Basic Statistics highlights important issues that often arise when collecting and sifting through data. Featured concepts include: • Descriptive statistics • Analysis of variance • Probability and sample distributions • Confidence intervals • Hypothesis tests • Regression • Statistical correlation • Data collection • Statistical analysis with graphs Fun and inviting from beginning to end, The Art of Data Analysis is an ideal book for students as well as managers and researchers in industry, medicine, or government who face statistical questions and are in need of an intuitive understanding of basic statistical reasoning.
“Brilliant, funny . . . the best math teacher you never had.”—San Francisco Chronicle Once considered tedious, the field of statistics is rapidly evolving into a discipline Hal Varian, chief economist at Google, has actually called “sexy.” From batting averages and political polls to game shows and medical research, the real-world application of statistics continues to grow by leaps and bounds. How can we catch schools that cheat on standardized tests? How does Netflix know which movies you’ll like? What is causing the rising incidence of autism? As best-selling author Charles Wheelan shows us in Naked Statistics, the right data and a few well-chosen statistical tools can help us answer these questions and more. For those who slept through Stats 101, this book is a lifesaver. Wheelan strips away the arcane and technical details and focuses on the underlying intuition that drives statistical analysis. He clarifies key concepts such as inference, correlation, and regression analysis, reveals how biased or careless parties can manipulate or misrepresent data, and shows us how brilliant and creative researchers are exploiting the valuable data from natural experiments to tackle thorny questions. And in Wheelan’s trademark style, there’s not a dull page in sight. You’ll encounter clever Schlitz Beer marketers leveraging basic probability, an International Sausage Festival illuminating the tenets of the central limit theorem, and a head-scratching choice from the famous game show Let’s Make a Deal—and you’ll come away with insights each time. With the wit, accessibility, and sheer fun that turned Naked Economics into a bestseller, Wheelan defies the odds yet again by bringing another essential, formerly unglamorous discipline to life.
"The fox knows many things, but the hedgehog knows one big thing." This ancient Greek aphorism, preserved in a fragment from the poet Archilochus, describes the central thesis of Isaiah Berlin's masterly essay on Leo Tolstoy and the philosophy of history, the subject of the epilogue to War and Peace. Although there have been many interpretations of the adage, Berlin uses it to mark a fundamental distinction between human beings who are fascinated by the infinite variety of things and those who relate everything to a central, all-embracing system. Applied to Tolstoy, the saying illuminates a paradox that helps explain his philosophy of history: Tolstoy was a fox, but believed in being a hedgehog. One of Berlin's most celebrated works, this extraordinary essay offers profound insights about Tolstoy, historical understanding, and human psychology. This new edition features a revised text that supplants all previous versions, English translations of the many passages in foreign languages, a new foreword in which Berlin biographer Michael Ignatieff explains the enduring appeal of Berlin's essay, and a new appendix that provides rich context, including excerpts from reviews and Berlin's letters, as well as a startling new interpretation of Archilochus's epigram.
Bayes rule appears to be a straightforward, one-line theorem: by updating our initial beliefs with objective new information, we get a new and improved belief. To its adherents, it is an elegant statement about learning from experience. To its opponents, it is subjectivity run amok. In the first-ever account of Bayes' rule for general readers, Sharon Bertsch McGrayne explores this controversial theorem and the human obsessions surrounding it. She traces its discovery by an amateur mathematician in the 1740s through its development into roughly its modern form by French scientist Pierre Simon Laplace. She reveals why respected statisticians rendered it professionally taboo for 150 years at the same time that practitioners relied on it to solve crises involving great uncertainty and scanty information, even breaking Germany's Enigma code during World War II, and explains how the advent of off-the-shelf computer technology in the 1980s proved to be a game-changer. Today, Bayes' rule is used everywhere from DNA de-coding to Homeland Security.Drawing on primary source material and interviews with statisticians and other scientists, The Theory That Would Not Die is the riveting account of how a seemingly simple theorem ignited one of the greatest controversies of all time.
A revelatory exploration of the hottest trend in technology and the dramatic impact it will have on the economy, science, and society at large. Which paint color is most likely to tell you that a used car is in good shape? How can officials identify the most dangerous New York City manholes before they explode? And how did Google searches predict the spread of the H1N1 flu outbreak? The key to answering these questions, and many more, is big data. “Big data” refers to our burgeoning ability to crunch vast collections of information, analyze it instantly, and draw sometimes profoundly surprising conclusions from it. This emerging science can translate myriad phenomena—from the price of airline tickets to the text of millions of books—into searchable form, and uses our increasing computing power to unearth epiphanies that we never could have seen before. A revolution on par with the Internet or perhaps even the printing press, big data will change the way we think about business, health, politics, education, and innovation in the years to come. It also poses fresh threats, from the inevitable end of privacy as we know it to the prospect of being penalized for things we haven’t even done yet, based on big data’s ability to predict our future behavior. In this brilliantly clear, often surprising work, two leading experts explain what big data is, how it will change our lives, and what we can do to protect ourselves from its hazards. Big Data is the first big book about the next big thing. www.big-data-book.com
The number one bestselling author of Agent Zigzag and Operation Mincemeat exposes the true story of the D Day Spies.
Arthur Kay’s exciting new publication is a must have for practicing, professional electrical engineers. This comprehensive guide shows engineers how to design amplifiers and associated electronics to minimize noise, providing tricks, rules-of-thumb, and analysis to create successful low noise circuits. Forget the classical textbook traps of equations, virtual grounds, and a lot of double-speak, the novel but educational presentation used here uses definition-by -example and straight-forward analysis. This is the ultimate reference book for engineers who don't have the time to read, since the concepts are presented in detailed pictures and then repeated in the text for those who like both. Operational amplifiers play a vital role in modern electronics design. Today, op amps serve as the interfaces between the digital world of microprocessors, microcontrollers, and other digital circuits and the analog "real world". If an analog signal must be amplified, conditioned, filtered, or converted to be used by a digital system, an op amp is almost always involved. Noise is an unwanted signal that will corrupt or distort the desired signal, and veteran engineers as well as new college graduates are often faced with a lack of experience in noise analysis for operational amplifiers. The author has created a publication that is packed with essential information, while still being accessible to all readers. Clear, definition-by-example presentation allows for immediate use of techniques introduced Tricks and rules-of-thumb, derived from author's decades of experience Extreme use of figures for rapid absorption of concepts Concise text explains the key points in all figures Accessible to all types of readers Analysis and design of low-noise circuits using op amps, including design tradeoffs for low-noise Desktop reference for designing low-noise op amp circuits for novice to experienced engineers Accurate measurement and prediction of intrinsic noise levels, using analysis by hand and SPICE simulation
Now in one convenient volume you can have all the information you need on real-world applications of electromagnetic theory, including the prediction, analysis, and measurement of electromagnetic fields and their effects. Radio Frequency Principles and Applications will guide you from the basics of electromagnetic theory to a full range of new and vital applications.
The Signal and the Noise …in 30 Minutes is the essential guide to quickly understanding the fundamental components of prediction outlined in Nate Silver’s bestselling book, The Signal and the Noise: Why So Many Predictions Fail ¬– but Some Don’t. In The Signal and the Noise bestselling author, political analyst, and statistician Nate Silver investigates the fundamentals of forecasting and answers why too much information can be misleading. Exploring a variety of fields, ranging from politics to poker to Wall Street and global warming, Silver explores why some forecasts are successful and, perhaps more telling, why so many fail. Stressing the importance of acknowledging personal bias, Silver posits that better forecasters possess a superior understanding of uncertainty and are driven by truth and humility while overconfidence can lead to failure. Presenting a framework for what constitutes a good forecast, Silver provides insight and tools for understanding how to successfully utilize Big Data and decipher meaningful signals from random noise.
The detection of gravitational waves—ripples in spacetime—has already been called the scientific coup of this century. Govert Schilling recounts the struggles that threatened to derail the quest and describes the detector’s astounding precision, weaving far-reaching discoveries about the universe into a gripping story of ambition and perseverance.
An award-winning journalist uses landmark research to debunk the whole expert prediction industry, and explores the psychology of our obsession with future history. In 2008, experts predicted gas would hit $20 a gallon; it peaked at $4.10. In 1967, they said the USSR would be the world's fastest-growing economy by 2000; by 2000, the USSR no longer existed. In 1908, it was pronounced that there would be no more wars in Europe; we all know how that turned out. Face it, experts are about as accurate as dart- throwing monkeys. And yet every day we ask them to predict the future- everything from the weather to the likelihood of a terrorist attack. Future Babble is the first book to examine this phenomenon, showing why our brains yearn for certainty about the future, why we are attracted to those who predict it confidently, and why it's so easy for us to ignore the trail of outrageously wrong forecasts. In this fast-paced, example-packed, sometimes darkly hilarious book, journalist Dan Gardner shows how seminal research by UC Berkeley professor Philip Tetlock proved that the more famous a pundit is, the more likely he is to be right about as often as a stopped watch. Gardner also draws on current research in cognitive psychology, political science, and behavioral economics to discover something quite reassuring: The future is always uncertain, but the end is not always near.
Sound Reproduction: The Acoustics and Psychoacoustics of Loudspeakers and Rooms, Third Edition explains the physical and perceptual processes that are involved in sound reproduction and demonstrates how to use the processes to create high-quality listening experiences in stereo and multichannel formats. Understanding the principles of sound production is necessary to achieve the goals of sound reproduction in spaces ranging from recording control rooms and home listening rooms to large cinemas. This revision brings new science-based perspectives on the performance of loudspeakers, room acoustics, measurements and equalization, all of which need to be appropriately used to ensure the accurate delivery of music and movie sound tracks from creators to listeners. The robust website (www.routledge.com/cw/toole) is the perfect companion to this necessary resource.
This updated second edition provides the state of the art perspective of the theory, practice and application of modern non-invasive imaging methods employed in exploring the structural and functional architecture of the normal and diseased human brain. Like the successful first edition, it is written by members of the Functional Imaging Laboratory - the Wellcome Trust funded London lab that has contributed much to the development of brain imaging methods and their application in the last decade. This book should excite and intrigue anyone interested in the new facts about the brain gained from neuroimaging and also those who wish to participate in this area of brain science. * Represents an almost entirely new book from 1st edition, covering the rapid advances in methods and in understanding of how human brains are organized * Reviews major advances in cognition, perception, emotion and action * Introduces novel experimental designs and analytical techniques made possible with fMRI, including event-related designs and non-linear analysis
A Fast Company best book of the yearA Washington Post bestsellerWinner of the 2017 Axiom Business Book Award in Business Technology How do you tell a real trend from the merely trendy? How, for example, will a technology--like artificial intelligence, machine learning, self-driving cars, biohacking, bots, and the Internet of Things--affect us, our businesses, and workplaces? How will it eventually change the way we live, work, play, and think--and how should we prepare for it now? In The Signals Are Talking, noted futurist Amy Webb shows us how to analyze the "true signals"--those patterns that will coalesce into a trend with the potential to change everything-and land on the right side of disruption. The future, Webb shows, isn't something that happens to us passively. Using a proven, tested methodology, she enables us to see ahead and forecast what's to come--challenging us to create our own preferred futures.
Highly effective thinking is an art that engineers and scientists can be taught to develop. By presenting actual experiences and analyzing them as they are described, the author conveys the developmental thought processes employed and shows a style of thinking that leads to successful results is something that can be learned. Along with spectacular successes, the author also conveys how failures contributed to shaping the thought processes. Provides the reader with a style of thinking that will enhance a person's ability to function as a problem-solver of complex technical issues. Consists of a collection of stories about the author's participation in significant discoveries, relating how those discoveries came about and, most importantly, provides analysis about the thought processes and reasoning that took place as the author and his associates progressed through engineering problems.

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