
truth, trust, insight and statistics You may get an impression from GR weekly that I’m preoccupied with the statistics of the everyday life and society around me. And, yes, in a way that’s true, but it is not because I blindly believe in statistics, on the contrary, it is because I enjoy searching for the meaning of any particular statistical approach to social life. From my physics’ freshman days, starting with the average value of some simple measurements, I carry a shadow skepticism on statistics in general and I never got read of it. (This may sound deviant to those who know that I, as a part of my university career, lectured on statistical physics for many years; however, I’ve never shuffled the practical, technical success of statistical calculations over the justification of those methods.) I’ve made a peace with myself realizing that I can accept a result of statistical approach only if I understand the assumptions of that particular approach and if I agree with them (or at least, have no objections). That is, if my insight on the subject is along the same guidelines. Well, the truth could be somewhere else, but I don’t trust ‘else", currently. My ‘preoccupation’ with tennis statistics is a good example of my dilemmas. Although I compliment myself for recognizing a power law in players’ ranking to justify a set of ranking bins used for the world of professional tennis by country, something is not along my insight when I examine the later graph. Is the dominance of Russian women really so pronounced?



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