November 11, 2012

XKCD misfire

The comic XKCD is usually spot-on in statistical commentary, but the most recent attempt doesn’t really work.  There’s a tendency for people who learnt frequentist statistics from bad textbooks and Bayesian statistics from good statisticians to think it’s the philosophy that makes the textbook bad, rather than the textbook that makes the philosophy bad.

I might be considered biased, so I’m outsourcing the details of this complaint to a well-known Bayesian statistician


Thomas Lumley (@tslumley) is Professor of Biostatistics at the University of Auckland. His research interests include semiparametric models, survey sampling, statistical computing, foundations of statistics, and whatever methodological problems his medical collaborators come up with. He also blogs at Biased and Inefficient See all posts by Thomas Lumley »