CHANCE News 1.03
              (15 Sept to 22 Sept 1992)



 On July 1, 1991 the Star Tribune(major newspaper of Minneapolis 
Saint  Paul) had a front page article with a picture of Peter Doyle and 
a headline

"Geometry: A 3-ring circus."

 On Sept 14 1992 THE FAR SIDE by Gary Larson featured a cartoon 
with  a professor writing  formulas on a blackboard in a circus arena 
and the  heading:

 "Abducted by an alien circus company, Professor Doyle is forced to 
write  calculus equations in center ring."

>>>>>==========>> Well, Marilyn Vos Savant has upped the ante onthe level of her probability paradoxes. In Sunday Sept 20 Parade Magazine Barney Bissinger, Hershey Pa asked: I am asked to select one of two envelopes and told only that one contains twiceas much money as the other. I find $100 in the envelope I select. Should I switch to the other one to improve my worldly gains? I imagine that she will get all kinds of mail on this one. She says you can't get any usefully information by looking at the amount in the envelope and implies that you should not worry about switching. But we all know this is not the correct answer since another well know paradox states that if you are given one of two numbers randomly chosen you can decide if you have the bigger of the two with a probability greater than 1/2. We will see how our class does on this. <<<========<<

>>>>>==========>> Letters. Nature Vol 359, 17 Sept 1992 In Nature 358, 532(1992) Rushton and Anknew wrote about claims of racial and sex differences in brain size. An editorial in the same issue as their paper suggested various ways that the study could be biased and this discussion is continued in a series of letters in the current issue of Nature. One of the more interesting ones claims to show that it is just another example of the well-known 'regression effect' <<<========<<

>>>>>==========>> Study finds many live, die for birthdays. Los Angeles Times, Sept 21, 1992 Nora Samichow <<<========<<

>>>>>==========>> Birthdays: a Matter of Life and Death. The New York Times, Sept 22 , 1992 Sandra Blakeslee Report of a study showing that women are slightly more likely to die one week after a birthday and men are more likely to die two or three weeks before their birthday. (both articles make this kind of non-symmetric statement) The Los Angeles Times is more complete than the NYT and states that the study showed for women 3% more deaths in the week after a birthday than would be expected in a normal week and 3% fewer deaths than would be expected in the 20 weeks before the birthday. <<<========<<

>>>>>==========>> The stock market is a lottery. Thank goodness for that. The Economist, August 8 1992 A discussion of the fact that the major funds do not do all that much better than guessing. Peter Doyle pointed out this article and the amusing statement in the article "Take 64 coins and toss one six times. On the laws of probability, one will give you six straight heads." <<<========<<

>>>>>==========>> Japan denies growing threat of AIDS epidemic. Clagary Herald, Sept 18 1992 Lewis M. Simons An account of the current attitude towards AIDS in Japan and how it distorts their statistics. <<<========<<

>>>>>==========>> Understanding the Criminal Mind. The Washington Post, Sept 15 1992 Don Oldenburg An interesting account of a major "framingham" type longitudinal research project by Earls and Reiss to discover the factors that lead individuals to delinquency, antisocial behavior and crime. <<<========<<

>>>>>==========>> Study finds students at small colleges drink more. The New York Times, Sept 20 1992 Report of a survey of 56,000 students comparing amount they drink with grades. "The study did not establish a causal link between drinking and low grades but found a strong correlation" <<<========<<

>>>>>==========>> Support grows for vitamins as roadblocks to heart disease. The New York Times, Sept 22 1992 Gina Kolata Still another way to keep from getting a heart attack--take vitamins. The effect of the vitamins is claimed to help why cholesterol gums up the arteries. !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! CHANCE News 1.03 (15 Sept to 22 Sept 1992) !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Please send suggestions to: jlsnell@dartmouth.edu >>>==========>>|<<==========<<<