allaboutgeorge + mathematics   8

The Media Has A Probability Problem | FiveThirtyEight
The reason is not because the world is highly predictable or because data can solve every problem, but because human judgment is more fallible than most people realize — and being more disciplined and rigorous in your approach can give you a fighting chance of getting the story right. The world isn’t one where things always turn out exactly as we want them to or expect them to. But it’s the world we live in.
statistics  journalism  elections  polls  mathematics  politics  media 
8 weeks ago by allaboutgeorge
From Ballistics to Programming - IEEE Spectrum
But there were no recruiting posters for one group of women whose work was absolutely essential to the war effort. Instead, they were recruited mainly by letters sent to colleges by the War Department. These were women being recruited not for their impressive biceps but for their prowess in math and engineering.
Their work was classified at the time, and that probably contributed to the fact that it has been almost entirely overlooked for more than 60 years now. Another reason, though, is that whatever light was shone on this corner of the war effort depicted these women as clerks, though in fact by the mid-1940s they had become the world’s first computer programmers.
women  wwii  programming  computers  technology  war  feminism  mathematics 
april 2011 by allaboutgeorge
The Information That Is Needed to Identify You: 33 Bits - Digits - WSJ
How many pieces of information are needed to identify an individual? In the field of re-identification science, it’s 33 “bits,” specifically “33 bits of entropy.” (Information-science researchers refer to random pieces of information as “entropy.”)

Why 33? Because a “bit” is computer lingo for an on-off switch that can have only two values, 0 or 1. And 2 multiplied by itself 33 times is a bit more than the number of people on earth — 6.6 billion. Two to the 32nd power is lower than the world’s population. So, in theory, it takes at least 33 “bits” of information to uniquely identify someone — getting the pool of people down to 20, which equals one.

Each piece of information you add reduces the pool of possible individuals. But not every data point is worth the same number of “bits.”
privacy  twitter  mathematics  science  marketing  identity  technology 
august 2010 by allaboutgeorge
Basics - Gut Instinct’s Surprising Role in Math - NYTimes.com
“What’s interesting and surprising in our results is that the same system we spend years trying to acquire in school, and that we use to send a man to the moon, and that has inspired the likes of Plato, Einstein and Stephen Hawking, has something in common with what a rat is doing when it’s out hunting for food. I find that deeply moving.”
mathematics  science  aesthetics  education  biology  fauna  animals  philosophy  attention 
september 2008 by allaboutgeorge
Ian Fleming’s reflection on the limitations of love - Times Online
"[T]he quantum of solace, he says, is a precise figure defining the comfort, humanity and fellow feeling required between two people for love to survive. If the quantum of solace is nil, then love is dead."
cinema  love  relationships  marriage  movies  aesthetics  sex  writing  fiction  mathematics 
january 2008 by allaboutgeorge
JewishJournal.com: Clues to family drama's Jewish roots finally add up in 'Numb3rs'
"You can't have the three of us in a frame together, looking the way we do, and not think we're Jewish. It would be just like having the proverbial white elephant in the room."
judaism  television  families  parenting  religion  mathematics  aesthetics  identity  losangeles 
october 2006 by allaboutgeorge
NYT: Behavior: Mix Math and Medicine and Create Confusion
"The truth is that random events can make or break us. It is more comforting to believe in the power of hard work and merit than to think that probability reigns not only in the casino but in daily life."
social  medicine  health  mathematics  science 
april 2005 by allaboutgeorge

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