Statistics Lie (part 4):  Normal Distribution…or its totally normal if your data is not normal

Statistics Lie (part 4): Normal Distribution…or its totally normal if your data is not normal

Statistics Lie, it’s Not Normal: Flaws of Assuming a Normal Distribution   The normal distribution is so common it is often taken for granted by non-statisticians.  However, real-world problems often follow when someone assumes their data is “normal” when it is not.  How do we recognize and avoid these mistakes?   What is the NormalRead more about Statistics Lie (part 4): Normal Distribution…or its totally normal if your data is not normal[…]

Statistics Lie (part three): Independent events…or how it was iid and not id that helped fuel the financial crisis

Statistics Lie (part three): Independent events…or how it was iid and not id that helped fuel the financial crisis

Statistics can be used to trick or deceive.  Statistics can also “prove” things that are not true at all.  One of the reasons this can happen is related to an assumption referred to as iid. Iid is shorthand for independent and identically distributed.  It is often a necessary assumption for statistical inference.  Assuming events are iidRead more about Statistics Lie (part three): Independent events…or how it was iid and not id that helped fuel the financial crisis[…]

Statistics Lie (part two): Correlation and Causation…or why vaccines don’t really cause autism

Statistics Lie (part two): Correlation and Causation…or why vaccines don’t really cause autism

Correlation is not Causation Everyone has heard the maxim that correlation does not necessarily imply causation.  But how do we prove when there is causation, when they are caused by the same thing (associated), and when it is just a coincidence? This is the second article in a series called “Statistics Lie” about how improperRead more about Statistics Lie (part two): Correlation and Causation…or why vaccines don’t really cause autism[…]

Statistics Lie (part one): Flaw of Averages…or why it takes slightly longer to get your Uber

Statistics Lie (part one): Flaw of Averages…or why it takes slightly longer to get your Uber

  The flaw of averages   Most people have heard of the law of averages, but what about the flaw of averages?  I would argue that understanding the flaw of averages is at least as important, especially if you don’t want to be fooled by bad analysis.   This is the first article in aRead more about Statistics Lie (part one): Flaw of Averages…or why it takes slightly longer to get your Uber[…]

I do not want to be a data scientist, should I still study machine learning?

I do not want to be a data scientist, should I still study machine learning?

Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) are often mentioned as things that will transform our world in the coming years. Lots of well meaning people implore young people to become data scientists. The advice to become a data scientist ignores the fact that not everyone can, or wants to, be a data scientist. ButRead more about I do not want to be a data scientist, should I still study machine learning?[…]