« 2006 Holidays |
| The trouble with percentages »
A contribution from a regular reader: apocalyse U.S. News style!
According to the scientists, super-volcanoes and viral pandemics are our biggest threats.
Posted on Dec 06, 2006 at 06:30 PM | Permalink
TrackBack URL for this entry:http://www.typepad.com/services/trackback/6a00d8341e992c53ef00d83501bbc469e2
Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Mid-week entertainment:
Probability is a number between 0 and 1, inclusive at both ends.
Dec 06, 2006 at 07:57 PM
(1) Probabilities that small, and losses that big, are usually represented on a log scale. I suspect this is the case here.
(2) What's amusing is that only 3 or 4 of these events can be assigned anything close to an "objective" probability at all. There's a geological record for supervolcanoes and meteorite impacts; the Spanish flu was the last major epidemic; climate change is still very noisy, and the rest are one-of-a-kind events with subjective probabilities. I'd rate "meteorite impact" higher, with Apophis coming by in 2029 (http://www.popularmechanics.com/science/air_space/4201569.html?page=1)
Mike Anderson |
Dec 06, 2006 at 09:35 PM
...pretty sure that's a joke chart...
Dec 07, 2006 at 11:44 AM
"Climate change is still very noisy".
When was the last time you checked Wikipedia on that? (Wikipedia: Global Warming.)
Dec 07, 2006 at 01:35 PM
I neither dine at used-car lots, nor cite Wikipedia as an authoritative reference. If I did, I'd note that every fitted curve they plot has noisy data wandering all about it -- this can make the error interval for forecasts huge. And the farther you forecast, the larger the interval. No one doubts the trend, but I suspect the prediction interval for climate catastrophe spans several orders of magnitude--much like the one for meteorite impact. The reassuring thing--to scientists--about climate research is that we keep extending the historic (and prehistoric) record, so our forecasts can improve. Of course, after the giant meteorite hits, all the climate models have to be recalibrated....
Mike Anderson |
Dec 07, 2006 at 04:07 PM
Telomere erosion? Mine are eroding as I type (and yours as you read).
Rosie Redfield |
Dec 07, 2006 at 07:26 PM
This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.
The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.
As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.
Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.
(You can use HTML tags like <b> <i> and <ul> to style your text.)
(Name is required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)
Name is required to post a comment
Please enter a valid email address