innumer

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Some good learnin’ here:

This web site stems from a personal interest in critical thinking and is a collection of links to articles and sites pertaining to numeracy and critical thinking. Links should be good for at least the date posted. After the posting date, link reliability depends on the policy of the linked sites. Some sites may require registration before allowing access.

Category: Mathematics, Really, really bad calls

Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor implied. If you could repeat previously discredited memes or steer the conversation into irrelevant, off topic discussions, it would be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous.

13 Responses to “Site of the Day: Innumeracy.com”

  1. torrie-amos says:

    have read 4 books on it a year ago, uhhhhhhhhhhhhh, not saying it’s wrong, probably right, to me it seemed like alll it was was numbers with confirmation bias, self-motivated obviously, so nothing really new or revolutionary jumped out at me, different brain types have strengths and weakness’s with numbers, ala, the artist and the accountant syndrome

  2. danm says:

    It ‘s nice to know how to play with numbers but in the end, I always revert to the Game of Life.

    http://www.bitstorm.org/gameoflife/

    This is a simple game and the outcome is extraordinary. The real world is way too complex to predict for our little brains.

    Luck accounts for most of our life experiences. Being at the right place at the right time with the right package.

  3. torrie-amos says:

    fwiw, number fans, imho, Complexity Theory is much more interesting, also a great story

  4. flipspiceland says:

    @danm

    That’s what Malcolm Gladwell thinks and writes as well.

    Considering our chances, each of us had a 1 in 350,000,000 chance of being born, chance would seem to begin right at the very beginning of life.

  5. torrie-amos says:

    Love Gladwell, have not read his new book, yet, on Blink, imho, where he set the stage, he gave no answer, which imho is wrong, there is a clear answer, what i totally agree with is when and where it will happen, yet it will, we make thousands of snap decisions a day, this is just but an example of one, yet, it’s one that counts…………

  6. flipspiceland says:

    @danm

    Tried to open the game but Explorer shut it down.

    Is there another way in?

  7. ajw says:

    Do they have a companion site for spelling? When I click the link, the header in my browser says “More aticles from Innumeracy.com” which is pretty damn funny.

  8. Deflator Mouse says:

    I’ve seen a million sites like that one.

  9. microcap says:

    For those of you too young, the first time I ever heard the term is from the 1988 book “Innumeracy” by John Allen Paulos…who later wrote a book about losing all his money in the stock market.

    It is a lifelong dream of mine to force every public official to read this book, under duress “A Clockwork Orange” style if necessary :)

  10. danm says:

    flipspiceland:

    You can find it in many more places. Here is another:
    http://www.math.com/students/wonders/life/life.html

    When I started my math degree, the first thing they made us do was solve a problem that showed us how we could not trust our own intuition.

    In computer sciences, the first thing they work on, I’ve been told, is the Game of Life.

  11. bsneath says:

    This is no lie.

    Years ago my son brought home a 6th grade math homework assignment and asked me to help him. Math being my strongest subject. I looked at the questions and I was confused. They were written in such a way that there was no correct answer. It turns out this was the latest innovation in teaching. There should not be a right or wrong answer because little Johnny’s self esteem might be damaged if he is wrong. So everybody will be right. In reality it only caused confusion.

    I suspect little Cheng is learning rigorous mathematical formulas. How will we compete in a global economy when “How do are children feel about themselves?” takes precedence over competency?

  12. They go into innumeracy in media there. That is one of my favorite peeves. There is nothing more frustrating to hear than how company profits shrunk by 200%

    @danm Huge time sink there

    @ajw

    Do they have a companion site for spelling? When I click the link, the header in my browser says “More aticles from Innumeracy.com” which is pretty damn funny.

    When I was reading Barry’s intro above I was think to myself how funny it would be if the site was riddled with spelling errors. Maybe it was deliberate. If not then it was a beautiful piece of irony

  13. Obviously, the world will end in a war between the math quants and the spin doctors who can write things about them ;)

    So that would propose an interesting dilemma. You’ve got the math quants on one side designing rockets and weapons and writing books on how to use them that are so bad that nobody knows how to use the weapons properly.

    On the other side you have a bunch of writers and idea guys who know exactly what to do and how to explain what to do to their troops. The only problem is they can’t design a weapon that will work let alone aim the thing

    I think we’ll call this story the Politician and the Banker ;)