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Proofiness: How You're Being Fooled by the Numbers [NOOK Book]

Overview

From the author of Zero, comes this "admirable salvo against quantitative bamboozlement by the media and the government" (The Boston Globe)

In Zero, Charles Seife presented readers with a thrilling account of the strangest number known to humankind. Now he shows readers how the power of skewed metrics-or "proofiness"- is being used to alter perception in both amusing and dangerous ways. Proofiness is behind such bizarre stories as a ...
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Proofiness: How You're Being Fooled by the Numbers

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Overview

From the author of Zero, comes this "admirable salvo against quantitative bamboozlement by the media and the government" (The Boston Globe)

In Zero, Charles Seife presented readers with a thrilling account of the strangest number known to humankind. Now he shows readers how the power of skewed metrics-or "proofiness"- is being used to alter perception in both amusing and dangerous ways. Proofiness is behind such bizarre stories as a mathematical formula for the perfect butt and sprinters who can run faster than the speed of sound. But proofiness also has a dark side: bogus mathematical formulas used to undermine our democracy-subverting our justice system, fixing elections, and swaying public opinion with lies. By doing the real math, Seife elegantly and good-humoredly scrutinizes our growing obsession with metrics while exposing those who misuse them.


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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781101443507
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
  • Publication date: 9/23/2010
  • Sold by: Penguin Group
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 320
  • Sales rank: 437,281
  • File size: 629 KB

Meet the Author


Charles Seife is the author of five previous books, including Proofiness and Zero, which won the PEN/Martha Albrand Award for first nonfiction and was a New York Times notable book. He has written for a wide variety of publications, including The New York Times, Wired, New Scientist, Science, Scientific American, and The Economist. He is a professor of journalism at New York University and lives in New York City.


 





 


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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3
( 18 )
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Sort by: Showing 1 – 19 of 18 Customer Reviews
  • Posted December 30, 2010

    Disappointed

    I was expecting a more scholarly work but I felt I was reading an extended op-ed piece. The author never really delves into the mathematics used to mislead and manipulate. He also spends an inordinate amount of time on the Florida and Minnesota elections kerfluffle and at times seems to suggest that electing our leaders is a foolish exercise. In addition, his footnotes only point to further of his own comments that should just be included in the original text. There was a bibliography but as far as I could see it was never referenced in the text (at least not in the eBook). A real shame since the other work that I read by this author (Zero, The Biography of a Dangerous Idea) was a completely engaging read.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 27, 2010

    Disappointing

    I was hoping for a more in depth review of the decpetive uses of numbers in today's society. I felt that this was more of a recount of the author's crusade against the Minnasota Electorial Commission and the Flordia Election Commission. I would have liked to have seen a more mathematical approach and a more scientific approach. The book did infact make some good points, but I felt that it just restated the obivious "Statistics Lie" mantra. Overall, I was very disappointed with this read, which is a shame because Charles Seife is one of my favorite authors.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 24, 2014

    Dr. C. R. Coleman

    Great read. If you're interested in how the powers that be (or the powers that wannabe) use math and statistical hogwash to keep us in line, buy this book.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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