I don’t know who this Taleb kid is, but he’s inspired me to stock up on hardcopy books.
Statistician and author Nassim Taleb has a suggestion for scientific researchers: stop trying to use standard deviations in your work. He says it’s misunderstood more often than not, and also not the best tool for its purpose. Taleb thinks researchers should use mean deviation instead. ‘It is all due to a historical accident: in 1893, the great Karl Pearson introduced the term “standard deviation” for what had been known as “root mean square error.” The confusion started then: people thought it meant mean deviation. The idea stuck: every time a newspaper has attempted to clarify the concept of market “volatility”, it defined it verbally as mean deviation yet produced the numerical measure of the (higher) standard deviation. But it is not just journalists who fall for the mistake: I recall seeing official documents from the department of commerce and the Federal Reserve partaking of the conflation, even regulators in statements on market volatility. What is worse, Goldstein and I found that a high number of data scientists (many with PhDs) also get confused in real life.’
Slashdot summary by anonymous
Why Standard Deviation Should Be Retired From Scientific Use
How long can agricultural post-scarcity support this sort of thing? I wish I could think of an estimate. Fortunately, Minneapolis is already on fire, and good riddance.
Three “youths” jumped a young white dude at the front door of my workplace last night. I had to go break it up, as usual, because everyone else in the world is apparently useless when SHTF. It’s going to be very hard to be sorry for them when the big winter hits. Tex was right, Tex was right, Tex was always right and never wrong…