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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Statistical Insights

Steve Miller in Information Management:  On our inability to link common sense and statically rigorous reasoning.   Very true, and it is even more difficult to explain this kind of reasoning to the decision makers that may  ultimately have to rely on it.    I spent many hours in my career using simple examples to drive these ideas through.    Miller provides some excellent simple examples of our quickness to look for causal explanations.   See also his recent post on Duncan Watts' book:  "Everything is Obvious ...", also well worth the read.  Quoting and expanding on:   " ...  common sense is "exquisitely adapted to handling the kind of complexity that arises in everyday situations … But 'situations' involving corporations, cultures, markets, nation-states, and global institutions exhibit a very different kind of complexity from everyday situations. And under these circumstances, common sense turns out to suffer from a number of errors that systematically mislead us ...  " .  Does this ultimately mean we need a deeper caution for applications of 'Business Intelligence'?

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