I suppose that statisticians always knew they were cool – but now the rest of us are figuring it out. The “quants” are the ones who (for better and worse) will sort through “big data” and, we hope, find meaningful things. For those of us who were reading that tenth Henry James novel instead of taking stats and learning the beauty of precise quantification of uncertainty, Charles Wheelan’s Naked Statistics helps cure that knowledge gap.
Warning: knowledge of this book’s contents will almost certainly mean you will be irritated by the media accounts of any scientific study. (Causation, and not correlation, will be involved.) On the other hand, you will know what to do on a show like Let’s Make a Deal when the host asks you whether you want to pick another of three doors, after the host opens one of the ones you didn’t pick. (For reasons less than intuitive, you do. Read the book. Odds are you’ll like it.)
-Alfred E. Numen