Statistics Hacks

Statistics Hacks

by Bruce Frey
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Statistics Hacks by Bruce Frey

Want to calculate the probability that an event will happen? Be able to spot fake data? Prove beyond doubt whether one thing causes another? Or learn to be a better gambler? You can do that and much more with 75 practical and fun hacks packed into Statistics Hacks. These cool tips, tricks, and mind-boggling solutions from the world of statistics, measurement, and research methods will not only amaze and entertain you, but will give you an advantage in several real-world situations-including business.

This book is ideal for anyone who likes puzzles, brainteasers, games, gambling, magic tricks, and those who want to apply math and science to everyday circumstances. Several hacks in the first chapter alone-such as the "central limit theorem,", which allows you to know everything by knowing just a little-serve as sound approaches for marketing and other business objectives. Using the tools of inferential statistics, you can understand the way probability works, discover relationships, predict events with uncanny accuracy, and even make a little money with a well-placed wager here and there.

Statistics Hacks presents useful techniques from statistics, educational and psychological measurement, and experimental research to help you solve a variety of problems in business, games, and life. You'll learn how to:

  • Play smart when you play Texas Hold 'Em, blackjack, roulette, dice games, or even the lottery
  • Design your own winnable bar bets to make money and amaze your friends
  • Predict the outcomes of baseball games, know when to "go for two" in football, and anticipate the winners of other sporting events with surprising accuracy
  • Demystify amazing coincidences and distinguish the truly random from the only seemingly random—even keep your iPod's "random" shuffle honest
  • Spot fraudulent data, detect plagiarism, and break codes
  • How to isolate the effects of observation on the thing observed

Whether you're a statistics enthusiast who does calculations in your sleep or a civilian who is entertained by clever solutions to interesting problems, Statistics Hacks has tools to give you an edge over the world's slim odds.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780596101640
Publisher: O'Reilly Media, Incorporated
Publication date: 05/20/2006
Series: Hacks Series
Pages: 358
Sales rank: 1,286,360
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Bruce Frey, Ph.D., is an assistant professor of psychology and research in education at the University of Kansas. Previous books include "Online Auctions! I Didn't Know You Could Do That " published by Sybex and, with Neil Salkind, "eBay Online Auctions: Effective Buying and Selling with eBay" published by Muska & Lipman. He is an award-winning teacher of statistics, research design, and measurement. Bruce enjoys movies and collecting comic books, especially those early 1960s DCs with the cool checkered flag pattern. (Note to his tenure committee: In the research field of education, he is also an author of fifty scholarly publications and papers.)

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Statistics Hacks 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Most people really hate statistics, although I¿m not sure why. In college, I enjoyed the subject so much, that I earned an advanced degree in it. With that begin said, I¿m always a bit leery of non-academic statistics books. Those that I have seen in the past generally have poor science or are more boring than a Ph.D. candidate¿s dissertation. Imagine my surprise when I read this book and found it both fun to read and scientifically correct! This book is laid out like a typical O¿Reilly ¿hacks¿ book. Each section is a ¿hack¿ or tip related to the overall subject of the book. However, I was really pleased with the organization of the hacks in this book. The hacks really closely follow the same order of concepts that students cover in an introductory statistics course. The author begins with discussing the basics of statistics (mean, median, standard deviation), and from there, works up to graphing, and predicting. However, these concepts are discussed in a way that makes it fun to read and seem really applicable to the real world. While the first half of the book covers the basics of statistics, the last half shows how to apply these concepts to the real world. The author shows through example after example that probability really works, how it works, and why it¿s fun to understand. In some examples, he shows how knowing the probabilities of casino blackjack can dramatically increase your chances of winning. Other fun probability exercises include how to win at Monopoly (or at least increase your chances of winning), checking how ¿honest¿ your iPod¿s random feature is, and how to predict the winners of sporting events. This is a really fun book to read and is based on solid statistical methodologies. This book is an absolute must if you need to understand the basics of statistical techniques, methologies, and theory. If more students used this book as their introductory statistics text, we¿d likely have a lot more statisticians.