Competent thinking about big numbers


And 0.002 dollars will NEVER equal 0.002 cents.

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Fri, 20 Mar 2009 04:00:00 GMT

We live in complicated times. We’re all trying to make sense of what is going on. That sense making isn’t made any easier by lazy writing and thinking. Actually, I don’t think this is a matter of deliberate efforts to mislead so much as it represents a continuing laziness when it comes to dealing with numbers, particularly big ones.

Two good places to start if you want to improve your own ability to make sense out of the numbers getting thrown around are Guesstimation: Solving the World’s Problems on the Back of a Cocktail Napkin and Filters Against Folly : How to Survive Despite Economists, Ecologists, and the Merely Eloquent.

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