The Importance of Accuracy

In 1905, a physicist measuring the thermal conductivity of copper would have faced, unknowingly, a very small systematic error due to the heating of his equipment and sample by the absorption of cosmic rays, then unknown to physics. In early 1946, an opinion poller, studying Japanese opinion as to who won the war, would have faced a very small systematic error due to the neglect of the 17 Japanese holdouts, who were discovered later north of Saipan. These cases are entirely parallel. Social, biological and physical scientists all need to remember that they have the same problems, the main difference being the decimal place in which they appear.


Comparing an error in measuring the thermal conductivity of copper to surveying Japanese after WWII.

Folksonomies: statistics measurment

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Measurement (0.921404): dbpedia | freebase
Electrical conductivity (0.796931): dbpedia | yago
Heat (0.784741): dbpedia | freebase
Empire of Japan (0.663669): dbpedia | freebase | yago
2008 albums (0.621324): dbpedia
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Cosmic ray (0.597445): dbpedia | freebase
Physics (0.596192): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc

 Principles of Sampling
Periodicals>Journal Article:  Cochran, Mosteller, Tukey (1954), Principles of Sampling, Journal of the American Statistical Society, 1954, 49, 31, Retrieved on 2012-01-31
Folksonomies: statistics