The Improbable Truth about Numbers

Four out of five dentists recommend a name brand toothpaste. One in ten people will develop a deadly cancer. 97% of statistics are made up on the spot. As humans, we have a tendency to take numbers as the whole truth. They give us a sense of objectivity. But as author Charles Seife explains in this introduction to The Illusion of Certainty, no matter how concrete numbers are, the fact that they are measured and interpreted by humans makes them fuzzy, or even flawed.

More from this series: The Illusion of Certainty

This program is part of The Big Idea Series, made possible with support from the John Templeton Foundation.

Sign up for our free newsletter to see exclusive features and be the first to get news and updates on upcoming WSF programs.

  • Share This: