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The Signal and the Noise: The Art and Science of Prediction

Silver, Nate
As Nassim Nicholas Taleb detailed in The Black Swan and as Fama also discussed in his thesis, the movement of stock prices does not follow a gentle bell-curve distribution. Instead, stock-price movements are characterized by very occasional but very large swings up or down. The distribution of stock-market crashes can also be modeled fairly well by a power-law distribution, which is the same function that governs the frequency of earthquakes.
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Jay Rosen, ?The View from Nowhere: Questions and Answers,? Jay Rosen?s Press Think, November 10, 2010. http://pressthink.org/2010/11/the-view-from-nowhere-questions-and-answers/
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This is just a personal reflection?not an empirical observation?but I am being somewhat literal about this point. When I was working on this book and came across a thorny problem that I couldn?t quite resolve, I found it much more productive to walk around, subjecting my brain to random inputs, than to stare at my computer screen or sit in a coffee shop. One of the advantages of living in New York is that it offers 24/7 access to the spontaneous behavior of eight million human beings who might jog your mind or your memory.
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Joel Mokyr, The Gifts of Athena: Historical Origins of the Knowledge Economy (Princeton: Princeton University Press, Kindle Edition), location 160?162.
The Signal and the Noise: The Art and Science of Prediction - Silver, Nate Location 9889-9890 - Your Highlight on Page 514 | Added on Tuesday, 16 July 13 02:30:16
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Tomasso Poggio and Federico Girosi, ?A Theory of Networks for Approximation and Learning,? Massachusetts Institute of Technology Artificial Intelligence Laboratory and Center for Biological Information Processing, Whitaker College, A.I. Memo 1140, C.B.I.P. Paper 31, July 1989. http://www.dtic.mil/cgi-bin/GetTRDoc?AD=ADA212359
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Sarah Lichtenstein and Baruch Fischhoff, ?Training for Calibration,? prepared for U.S. Army Research Institute for the Behavioral and Social Sciences, ARI Technical Report TR-78-A32; November 1978. http://www.dtic.mil/cgi-bin/GetTRDoc?AD=ADA069703
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Christopher J. Gill, Lora Sabin and Christopher H. Schmidt, ?Why Clinicians Are Natural Bayesians,? British Medical Journal, vol. 330; May 7, 2005. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC557240/
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Thomas C. Peterson, William M. Connolley, and John Fleck, ?The Myth of the 1970s Global Cooling Scientific Consensus,? Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, September 2008. http://scienceblogs.com/stoat/Myth-1970-Global-Cooling-BAMS-2008.pdf
The Signal and the Noise: The Art and Science of Prediction - Silver, Nate Location 9596-9598 - Your Highlight on Page 508 | Added on Tuesday, 16 July 13 02:19:43
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Nate Silver, ?Despite Protests, Some Reason for Optimism in Copenhagen,? FiveThirtyEight.com, December 9, 2009. http://www.fivethirtyeight.com/2009/12/despite-protests-some-reasons-for.html.
The Signal and the Noise: The Art and Science of Prediction - Silver, Nate Location 9451-9454 - Your Highlight on Page 504 | Added on Tuesday, 16 July 13 02:16:59
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Specifically, a linear regression of the sign of that day?s stock price (1 indicating a positive movement and ?1 indicating a negative movement) on the previous day?s stock price. The trend is also highly statistically significant if you take a regression of the percentage change in the stock price on the previous day?s percentage change. Note, however, that standard forms of regression analysis assume that errors are normally distributed, whereas the stock market does not obey a normal distribution. Economists like Fama think this is a problem when applying standard statistical tests to analyze patterns in stock prices.
The Signal and the Noise: The Art and Science of Prediction - Silver, Nate Location 9188-9192 - Your Highlight on Page 498 | Added on Tuesday, 16 July 13 02:12:19
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Contrast this with a sport like tennis, where the structure of the game is such that even modest differences in skill level manifest themselves very quickly. The very best players in the world, like Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic, win only about 55 percent of the points they play?barely more than half. However, hundreds of points are played over the course of a single match, while baseball players might get just four or five at-bats. It would be silly to conclude that Nadal is better at tennis than Josh Hamilton is at baseball. But Nadal almost always wins while Hamilton has plenty of nights when he goes 0-for-4. In tennis, you reach the long run much more quickly.
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David H. Krantz, ?The Null Hypothesis Testing Controversy in Psychology,? Journal of the American Statistical Association, 44, no. 448 (December 1999). http://www.jstor.org/discover/10.2307/2669949?uid=3739832&uid=2&uid=4&uid=3739256&sid=47698905120317.
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William M. Briggs, ?It Is Time to Stop Teaching Frequentism to Non-Statisticians,? arXiv.org, January 13, 2012. http://arxiv.org/pdf/1201.2590.pdf
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David R. Anderson, Kenneth P. Burnham, and William L. Thompson, ?Null Hypothesis Testing: Problems, Prevalence, and an Alternative,? Journal of Wildlife Management, 64, 4 (2000), pp. 912?923. http://cat.inist.fr/%3FaModele%3DafficheN%26cpsidt%3D792848.
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Jeff Gill, ?The Insignificance of Null Hypothesis Significance Testing,? Political Research Quarterly, 52, 3 (September 1999), pp. 647?674. http://www.artsci.wustl.edu/~jgill/papers/hypo.pdf
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Although there are several different formulations of the steps in the scientific method, this version is mostly drawn from ?APPENDIX E: Introduction to the Scientific Method,? University of Rochester. http://teacher.pas.rochester.edu/phy_labs/appendixe/appendixe.html.
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Andrew Gelman and Cosma Tohilla Shalizi, ?Philosophy and the Practice of Bayesian Statistics,? British Journal of Mathematical and Statistical Psychology, pp. 1?31, January 11, 2012. http://www.stat.columbia.edu/~gelman/research/published/philosophy.pdf
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Raymond S. Nickerson, ?Null Hypothesis Significance Testing: A Review of an Old and Continuing Controversy,? Psychological Methods, 5, 2 (2000), pp. 241?301. http://203.64.159.11/richman/plogxx/gallery/17/%E9%AB%98%E7%B5%B1%E5%A0%B1%E5%91%8A.pdf.
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Jeremy Kahn, ?The Man Who Would Have Us Bet on Terrorism?Not to Mention Discard Democracy and Cryogenically Freeze Our Heads?May Have a Point (About the Betting, We Mean),? Fortune magazine via CNN Money, September 15, 2003.
The Signal and the Noise: The Art and Science of Prediction - Silver, Nate Location 8478-8480 - Your Highlight on Page 483 | Added on Monday, 15 July 13 21:04:11
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Glenn Gunzelmann and Kevin A. Gluck, ?Knowledge Tracing for Complex Training Applications: Beyond Bayesian Mastery Estimates,? Air Force Research Laboratory,; Proceedings of the Thirteenth Conference on Behavior Representation in Modeling and Simulation, 2004, pp. 383?84. http://act-r.psy.cmu.edu/papers/710/gunzelmann_gluck-2004.pdf
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