Category Archives: statistics

Needle in a Haystack

Cracking codes seems like it should be a relatively straightforward task. Codes are not designed to be trivial; people encrypt text with the intention that someone else somewhere will be able to decipher it into a meaningful message. In order to form an intelligible message, the code maker employs an agreed upon pattern so that […] Continue reading

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Misleading Statistics

An interesting pint Cory Doctorow brought up in his novel, Little Brother, is the idea of the “false positive.” He writes, “Say you have a new disease, called Super­AIDS. Only one in a million people gets Super­AIDS. You develop a test for Super­AIDS that’s 99 percent accurate… You give the test to a million people. One […] Continue reading

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The Paradox

In Doctorow’s Little Brother, Marcus Yallow is a young boy who is falsely accused and interrogated on the grounds of being a terrorist. He decides to wage war against the DHS, the organization that kidnapped him, by creating more instances of suspicious behavior in order to make their security systems seem wildly inaccurate. He explains […] Continue reading

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