Naked Statistics: Stripping the Dread from the Data

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W. W. Norton & Company, Jan 7, 2013 - Business & Economics - 282 pages
5 Reviews

The best-selling author of Naked Economics defies the odds with a book about statistics that you’ll welcome and enjoy.

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.

 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - nbmars - LibraryThing

This is a very lucidly written book that covers the basics of the branch of math known as statistics. It shows the uses and misuses of statistics and some of the essential math behind the applications ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - nmarun - LibraryThing

My interests in Mathematics have been a little above normal for quite some time now. I took up this book to refresh my Statistical knowledge, assuming I knew quite a bit about the subject and boy was ... Read full review

Contents

Who was the best baseballplayer of all time?
15
Hes got a great personality and other true but grossly misleading statements
36
4
43
How does Netflix know what movies I like?
58
5
68
8
127
9
136
Why my statistics professor thought I might have cheated
143
10
169
11
185
12
211
13
225
Five questions that statistics can help answer
241
Statistical software
257
Index
269
Copyright

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About the author (2013)

Charles Wheelan is the author of the best-selling Naked Statistics and Naked Economics and is a former correspondent for The Economist. He teaches public policy and economics at Dartmouth College and lives in Hanover, New Hampshire, with his family.

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