Published by patrick honner on

ProofinessThis is a short interview in the NYT with Charles Seife, the author of “Proofiness:  The Dark Art of Mathematical Deception”.

Trading on Colbert’s clever coinage–Truthiness–Seife’s book apparently address the myriad ways that the misrepresentation and misinterpretation of statistics negatively affects medicine, economics, politics, justice, and other aspects of society.

It’s not clear that this book is covering any ground that hasn’t already been covered in, say, How to Lie With Statistics (an amusing classic!) or the engaging and readable work of John Allen Paulos, but hopefully the more the issue is raised, the more seriously it will be taken.  The consequences of innumeracy, and general scientific illiteracy, are profound and far-reaching, and they affect us all.

patrick honner

Math teacher in Brooklyn, New York


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