# Randomness

## Deborah J. Bennett

- English
- ePUB (disponibile sull'app)
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# Randomness

## Deborah J. Bennett

## Informazioni sul libro

From the ancients' first readings of the innards of birds to your neighbor's last bout with the state lottery, humankind has put itself into the hands of chance. Today life itself may be at stake when probability comes into play—in the chance of a false negative in a medical test, in the reliability of DNA findings as legal evidence, or in the likelihood of passing on a deadly congenital disease—yet as few people as ever understand the odds. This book is aimed at the trouble with trying to learn about probability. A story of the misconceptions and difficulties civilization overcame in progressing toward probabilistic thinking, Randomness is also a skillful account of what makes the science of probability so daunting in our own day.To acquire a (correct) intuition of chance is not easy to begin with, and moving from an intuitive sense to a formal notion of probability presents further problems. Author Deborah Bennett traces the path this process takes in an individual trying to come to grips with concepts of uncertainty and fairness, and also charts the parallel path by which societies have developed ideas about chance. Why, from ancient to modern times, have people resorted to chance in making decisions? Is a decision made by random choice "fair"? What role has gambling played in our understanding of chance? Why do some individuals and societies refuse to accept randomness at all? If understanding randomness is so important to probabilistic thinking, why do the experts disagree about what it really is? And why are our intuitions about chance almost always dead wrong?Anyone who has puzzled over a probability conundrum is struck by the paradoxes and counterintuitive results that occur at a relatively simple level. Why this should be, and how it has been the case through the ages, for bumblers and brilliant mathematicians alike, is the entertaining and enlightening lesson of Randomness.

## Domande frequenti

## Informazioni

**Chance Encounters**

Our brains are just not wired to do probability problems very well. PERSI DIACONIS 1989 |

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^{3}In evaluating the eyewitness’s account, “jurors” seem to overrate the eyewitness’s likelihood of accurately reporting this specific hit-and-run event, while underrating the more general base rate of cabs in the city, because the latter information seems too nonspecific.

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^{6}For example, the commonly held notion that, on a coin toss, a tail should follow a string of heads is erroneous. Children seem particularly susceptible to this fallacy. Jean Piaget and Barbel Inhelder, who studied the development of mathematical thinking in children and whose work will be described frequently in the following chapters, pointed out that “by contrast with [logical and arithmetical] operations, chance is gradually discovered.”

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