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How to Lie with Statistics [Kindle Edition]

Darrell Huff , Irving Geis
4.5 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (32 Kundenrezensionen)

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"There is terror in numbers," writes Darrell Huff in How to Lie with Statistics. And nowhere does this terror translate to blind acceptance of authority more than in the slippery world of averages, correlations, graphs, and trends. Huff sought to break through "the daze that follows the collision of statistics with the human mind" with this slim volume, first published in 1954. The book remains relevant as a wake-up call for people unaccustomed to examining the endless flow of numbers pouring from Wall Street, Madison Avenue, and everywhere else someone has an axe to grind, a point to prove, or a product to sell. "The secret language of statistics, so appealing in a fact-minded culture, is employed to sensationalize, inflate, confuse, and oversimplify," warns Huff.

Although many of the examples used in the book are charmingly dated, the cautions are timeless. Statistics are rife with opportunities for misuse, from "gee-whiz graphs" that add nonexistent drama to trends, to "results" detached from their method and meaning, to statistics' ultimate bugaboo--faulty cause-and-effect reasoning. Huff's tone is tolerant and amused, but no-nonsense. Like a lecturing father, he expects you to learn something useful from the book, and start applying it every day. Never be a sucker again, he cries!

Even if you can't find a source of demonstrable bias, allow yourself some degree of skepticism about the results as long as there is a possibility of bias somewhere. There always is.

Read How to Lie with Statistics. Whether you encounter statistics at work, at school, or in advertising, you'll remember its simple lessons. Don't be terrorized by numbers, Huff implores. "The fact is that, despite its mathematical base, statistics is as much an art as it is a science." --Therese Littleton

Amazon.com

"There is terror in numbers," writes Darrell Huff in How to Lie with Statistics. And nowhere does this terror translate to blind acceptance of authority more than in the slippery world of averages, correlations, graphs, and trends. Huff sought to break through "the daze that follows the collision of statistics with the human mind" with this slim volume, first published in 1954. The book remains relevant as a wake-up call for people unaccustomed to examining the endless flow of numbers pouring from Wall Street, Madison Avenue, and everywhere else someone has an axe to grind, a point to prove, or a product to sell. "The secret language of statistics, so appealing in a fact-minded culture, is employed to sensationalize, inflate, confuse, and oversimplify," warns Huff.

Although many of the examples used in the book are charmingly dated, the cautions are timeless. Statistics are rife with opportunities for misuse, from "gee-whiz graphs" that add nonexistent drama to trends, to "results" detached from their method and meaning, to statistics' ultimate bugaboo--faulty cause-and-effect reasoning. Huff's tone is tolerant and amused, but no-nonsense. Like a lecturing father, he expects you to learn something useful from the book, and start applying it every day. Never be a sucker again, he cries!

Even if you can't find a source of demonstrable bias, allow yourself some degree of skepticism about the results as long as there is a possibility of bias somewhere. There always is.

Read How to Lie with Statistics. Whether you encounter statistics at work, at school, or in advertising, you'll remember its simple lessons. Don't be terrorized by numbers, Huff implores. "The fact is that, despite its mathematical base, statistics is as much an art as it is a science." --Therese Littleton


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2 von 2 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen popular account of how statistics can be misused 14. Juli 2000
Format:Taschenbuch
Statisticians hate the old adage "Lies, Damned Lies and Statistics", but statistical methods do have that reputation with the general public. There are many excellent accounts, some even understandable to laymen that explain the proper ways to analyze, study and report the analysis of statistical data. Huff's famous account is illustrative and well written. It gives the average guy a look at how statistics is commonly misused (either unintentionally or deliberately) in the popular media. Graphical abuses are particularly instructive. Readers should recognize that statistical methods are scientific and with proper education anyone should be able to recognize the good statisticians from the charletons. For now Huff's book is still a good starting place. As a statistician I hate the public image portrayed in the quote above. However, I do sometimes have fun with it myself. As I write this review I am in my office wearing a sweatshirt that reads "When all else fails manipulate the data."
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1 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Format:Taschenbuch
This book is an excellent guide to how statistics are manipulated and misused. Speaking as a professional statistician I recommend it highly. Very readable and entertaining, the book goes through the basic ways in which statistics are misrepresented, and how a little common sense can (very often) reveal when extravagant claims are being made. This books is a little dated now (it was written in 1954) but very much worth reading - the ways statistics are manipulated haven't changed much. This book is not a textbook of statistics and is not aimed at college students. Rather, it is aimed at high school students and members of the general public who want to be on their guard against being manipulated by advertising and "studies". The last chapter ("How to talk back to a Statistic") should be required reading for anyone who reads a newspaper or an advertisement. More than anything else, this book teaches how to apply a little common sense to test wild statistical claims.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen Statisticians don't like this book - what a surprise! 26. November 1999
Von Ein Kunde
Format:Taschenbuch
For someone who has not read this book, the disparity in reviews is probably striking. Those literally looking for a statistics course, or especially statisticians, will be disappointed. This book is about understanding and interpreting statistics from a practical standpoint. Ignore the statisticians - they are being sensitive about how their work is abused. Ignore the students looking for a statistics book - that isn't the intent of Huff's work.
This is one of my favorite books of all time. It helped me become a much more discerning consumer of news. This book is intended to help you better comprehend stat's that are thrown at you to make a point - which essentially means all stat's. Unfortunately, many times this is done is disingenuous ways, and this book will help you see through such foolishness.
In short - buy this little book. It is one of the best book values you will ever find.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen A superb little book about statistics 30. März 2000
Format:Taschenbuch
This charming, cynical, wittly little book exposes many of the cheap tricks, bogus techniques, and cunning deceptions employed by Madison Avenue, politicians, corporate PR departments and even -- dare we admit it? -- scientists. I am surprised to find that some statisticians here have panned this book. Do they imagine their craft is only used for the good of mankind? That their colleagues are all upstanding citizens who would not think of deceiving members of the public, employers, stockholders, or Members of Congress? Yes, the techniques described here are simple, and any professional should see through them. For that matter, any banker should see through common stock swindles and Ponzi schemes, yet in the business section you will often read about prestigious banks and long-established investment firms that were taken in by these schemes and robbed of huge sums of money. Experts fall for stupid tricks too. Anyway, the book was written for the general public, not for professionals. And the professionals should remember Huff's main point:
"The fact is that, despite its mathematical base, statistics is as much an art as it is a science. A great many manipulations and even distortions are possible within the bounds of propriety. Often the statistician must choose among methods, a subjective process, and find the one that he will use to represent the facts. In commercial practice he is about as unlikely to select an unfavorable method as a copywriter is to call his sponsor's product flimsy and cheap when he might as well say light and economical."
My mother was a professional statistician. She recommended this book to me at a tender age.
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Von Ein Kunde
Format:Taschenbuch
One grumpy stats major (2 stars) and 9 loved it! Things that make you go hmmm...
People who make a living selling statistics might not want you to think critically, but you know vested interests lie all the time.
You can lie with words, and you can lie with pictures, and you most certainly can lie with numbers, graphs, and bias conclusions based on bad data.
(Garbage in, Garbage out)
Not every statistician lies. In fact most (probably) do not, or at least most (probably) don't make a habit out of lying with statistics, but most of those who do lie with statistics are not statisticians, but are rather USERS of statistics and maybe a few sell-their-soul-to-the-highest-bidder mediocre "statisticians" like advertisers or politicians and their handlers -- those who are either selling themselves or some services or things, or ideas
("You gotta believe me" "ëverything's fine, fine, fine, everything's fine" "no problem, boss!").
We have to be able to see through the smoke & mirrors -- to distinguish between fact and fluff.
The book is very good at getting some important ideas across to non-mathematical non-statisticians.
This is a classic, and has probably sold more copies than any other math book, ever.
Despite the fact that many of its examples are dated (obviously written in the 50's) even drawing on quotations from the 1800's, but the concepts are timeless and need no revision.
(Complaints about the age of the book are like complaining about Euclid being pre-Christian, or the age of Proverbs or Aethiops Fables.)
This book will probably be read a thousand years from now!
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Die neuesten Kundenrezensionen
5.0 von 5 Sternen Beispiele sind sehr veraltet aber trotzdem ein super Buch über...
Beispiele sind sehr veraltet aber trotzdem ein super Buch über typische Tricks/ Manipulation und falsche Darstellung von Daten. Lesen Sie weiter...
Vor 23 Stunden von szachista_z veröffentlicht
5.0 von 5 Sternen How to lie with Statistics
I enjoyed reading this book. The authors give many examples how people lie or misuse data presentation to let readers misunderstand the fact. Lesen Sie weiter...
Vor 5 Monaten von Sitt C. veröffentlicht
5.0 von 5 Sternen Amazing!
It is very shocking to see that such a book that is written almost 50 years ago is still valid and has so much to offer. Lesen Sie weiter...
Vor 15 Monaten von Hossein Rahdari veröffentlicht
4.0 von 5 Sternen schon recht alt, aber zu empfehlen
die Beispiele entstammen oft den 50ern und 60ern, was aber nichts macht, denn die Tricks sind noch die gleichen. Lesen Sie weiter...
Vor 15 Monaten von Sophie veröffentlicht
5.0 von 5 Sternen Ein weiterhin aktueller Klassiker
Das Buch entlarvt nicht nur Tricks denen die meisten von uns täglich ausgesetzt sind sondern ist auch unterhaltsam zu lesen, nicht zuletzt dank erstklassiger Illustrationen.
Veröffentlicht am 28. Februar 2013 von pavel
4.0 von 5 Sternen Interesting for non-statisticians
This book discusses the most common sources of statical deception in media. Like scale of graphs or misuse of mean and median etc. Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 13. Dezember 2012 von Beebear
5.0 von 5 Sternen A clssic text
It is an early book about human cognition, about how our brain works, comparable to Daniel Kahnemann's Thinking Fast and Slow.
Veröffentlicht am 8. Dezember 2012 von David Klemperer
5.0 von 5 Sternen Die Quelle manchen Übels
Die Zahl, besser gesagt die Statistik die diese Zahl generiert, oder noch besser diejenigen die bewusst oder unbewusst die wichtigen Fragen wie diese Zahl zustande kommt nicht... Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 24. Juni 2012 von Mans Art
5.0 von 5 Sternen Nice Book
I'd like to thank the seller for the quick delivery. The book is a nice quick reading, and full of examples that are old maybe, but they give a good idea of how information can be... Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 28. Mai 2010 von Ahmad Hasan
5.0 von 5 Sternen Great book!
This little book is superb. It isn't about statistical formulas but about how statistics can be manipulated by certain people who benefit from certain results. Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 9. Februar 2009 von Maddemathiger
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