« Updates | Main | Discussing Numbers Rule Your World »


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.


I'd add a few more points:

* How many of the "positive" findings are non-terrorist related (i.e. smuggling)?

* What is the likelihood that any concealable object would allow a person to destroy or control an airplane?


Questioning the wisdom and effectiveness of the TSA's strategies helps the terrorists to win.

Of course, I'm kidding. If the studies have been done to answer your questions, I can almost guarantee no one will ever release them. I'd wager they've never been done - this is more likely a case of political back-scratching.

I found this old article on the actual probability (and cost) of terrorist attacks fascinating. What's your take on his numbers? http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703481004574646963713065116.html


As far as effectiveness of full-body scanners goes, it may be relevant that former DHS Secretary Michael Chertoff is a vocal supporter of deploying these systems, and is contracted (through his security consulting company, the Chertoff Group) by the company that manufactures the back-scatter x-ray machines.

The NYT lack of editorial integrity should also come as no surprise, as the paper has repeatedly admitted to approaching the White House to screen its articles, most recently with Wikileaks' "Cablegate."

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

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.


Post a comment

Your Information

(Name is required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)


Link to Principal Analytics Prep

See our curriculum, instructors. Apply.
Business analytics and data visualization expert. Author and Speaker. Founder of Principal Analytics Prep, MS Applied Analytics at Columbia. See my full bio.

Next Events

Apr: 3 How 3 Women Became Data Scientists (Panel), Principal Analytics Prep, NYC

Apr: 25 Analytics Careers Advice, Stevens Institute of Tech, Hoboken, NJ

Apr: 26 Data Visualization Guest Lecture, NYU, New York, NY

May: 2 New York Marketing Association Big Data Workshop, NYC

May: 5 NYPL Analytics Careers Talk, NYC

May: 8 Data Visualization Seminar, Denver, CO

Past Events

See here

Future Courses (New York)

Summer: Statistical Reasoning & Numbersense, Principal Analytics Prep (4 weeks)

Summer: Applied Analytics Frameworks & Methods, Columbia (6 weeks)

Junk Charts Blog

Link to junkcharts

Graphics design by Amanda Lee


  • only in Big Data