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probability

Illustration by Lucy Reading-Ikkanda for Quanta Magazine
Abstractions blog

The Devil in the Polling Data

November 11, 2016

The same problem that caused the 2007 financial crisis also tripped up the polling data ahead of this year’s presidential election.

Abstractions blog

Why (Almost) Everyone Was Wrong

November 9, 2016

The results of this year’s presidential election made a mockery of analytical election forecast modelers.

insights puzzle

Solution: ‘Which Forecasts Are True?’

October 26, 2016

Aside from potential clues gleaned from a fluke result, it would take hundreds of U.S. presidential elections to definitely conclude that one election forecasting model is superior to another.

insights puzzle

How Can We Tell Which Forecasts Are True?

October 13, 2016

Presidential election forecasts are historically successful and appear to be highly precise. Yet they’re often contradictory. What would it take to trust them?

insights puzzle

Solution: ‘A Drunkard’s Walk in Manhattan’

September 7, 2016

City blocks help illustrate why walking randomly tends to take you away from your starting point.

insights puzzle

A Drunkard’s Walk in Manhattan

August 18, 2016

Why is it that when you walk randomly, the more you walk, the farther you get from your starting point?

Olena Shmahalo/Quanta Magazine
insights puzzle

Solution: ‘A Random Place at the Table’

May 26, 2016

Try these shortcuts for solving problems that seem to require a lengthy calculation.

insights puzzle

Why Sleeping Beauty Is Lost in Time

March 31, 2016

The famous Sleeping Beauty problem has divided probability theorists, decision theorists and philosophers for over 15 years. Puzzle columnist Pradeep Mutalik claims to have discovered the source of confusion.

insights puzzle

Solution: ‘Sleeping Beauty’s Dilemma’

January 29, 2016

The solution to this month’s puzzle gets to the bottom of the famously ambiguous Sleeping Beauty probability problem.