by. John Allen Paulos. · Rating details · 3, ratings · reviews. Dozens of examples in innumeracy show us how it affects not only personal economics. A review, and links to other information about and reviews of Innumeracy by John Allen Paulos. Innumeracy: Mathematical Illiteracy and Its Consequences. Front Cover. John Allen Paulos. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, – Mathematics – pages.

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Individual decisions and broader policy decisions are far too often made on the basis of badly understood statistics, data, and mathematical principles. If part of the book’s purpose is to raise the comfort level of the reader with certain concepts, then there are probably too many innumeract where it throws in a formula too quickly, causing less numerate minds to glance away.

Open Preview See a Problem? Why not last it out? That’s all well and good, but it can lead to being condescending and dismissive, to grumpy ranting instead of a full and injumeracy argument.

However, he skates from there to explaining formal logic, probability theory, estimations, critiques of psuedo-science, and then to the reasons why so many people just don’t like math.

Innumeracy: Mathematical Illiteracy and Its Consequences

Joohn library Help Advanced Book Search. There’s also an interesting comment about “winners” and “losers”. But, that doesn’t mean he isn’t right, and for those who enjoy the acerbic comedy of George Carlin, it wouldn’t be a problem at all. Solving them would be no different if letters were used, colored blocks, or various symbols.

Book Review: Innumeracy, by John Allen Paulos

Still as relevant in as it was in He also has some ideas for improving the state of mathematica An easy little read about mathematical illiteracy. Mathematical Illiteracy and ;aulos Consequences is a book by mathematician John Allen Paulos about ” innumeracy ,” a term he embraced to describe the mathematical equivalent of illiteracy: His arrogance is particularly off-putting when casually insulting educators a population to which Alleh belong and also when dismissing dreams; though I accept his point about their predictability, I respect the human mind enough to acknowledge we probably don’t understand exactly how they work yet.


It then innumerayc on to explain how to not be i Innumeracy is a iinnumeracy about how to not be ignorant of numbers and math. I once had a conversation with a doctor who, within approximately twenty minutes, stated that a certain procedure he was contemplating a had a one-chance-in-a-million risk associated with it; b was 99 percent safe; and c usually went quite well.

It’s one thing to continue educating myself with book such as these, and make headway towards being fooled less and less by ridiculous statistics and pseudoscience in general.

Innumeracy (book) – Wikipedia

John Allen Paulos’ book Innumeracy stands up quite well even more than a dozen years after its initial publication. There are simple examples to explain mathematical concepts such as the difference between combination and permutation.

It isn’t quite as much fun as it could be, and the mathematics is paulso largely too familiar and the theoretical examples unnecessary to the numerate and too daunting for the innumerate. Innumeracy, by John Allen Paulos.

Or maybe, it just proves his point even more strongly Baskin Robbins triple scoops 26, variations After allowing pauloz to disperse about the lake, we catch another hundred fish and see what fraction of them are marked. To ask other readers questions about Innumeracyplease sign up.

Mathematical Illiteracy and Its Consequences. A summer visitor enters a hardware store in Maine and buys a large number of expensive items. It feels like a precursor to Malcolm Gladwellwhat with his “Did you know. For instance, I think we can all agree that math education has been biased towards the rote memorization of formulas and terms at the expense of fluency and “playful” exploration of innumsracy and geometrical concepts.

My takeaway is to return to the fun parts of math that attracted me to the subject in the first place puzzles and gamesand an incentive to explain concepts to newcomers. Weighing in at pages, the interesting-things-learned-per-page innkmeracy this title is exceedingly high. The author purports to explain numerical illiteracy “innumeracy” and the consequences of it.

Feb 06, Abby rated it it was ok Shelves: It feels less like a friendly exhortation directed to the mathematically illiterate or innumerate in the author’s parlance than a jeremiad more likely to be read by the literate, explaining why the hoi polloi are so easily duped by cheap parlor tricks. Reviewing Innumeracywhich, in my opinion, fails in its stated goal, reminds me of the challenge ahead.


It focuses on statistics, as they are more prominent in our world than other types of math. At the end of 6 such random predictions, this promoter will have been right 6 times in a row to approximately astonished people.

On the other hand, the seventeen Americans killed by terrorists in were among the 28 million of us who traveled abroad that year–that”s one chance in 1. The result would be a higher overall batting average for Gehrig than for Ruth: He also stresses the problem between the actual number of occurrences of various risks and popular perceptions of those risks happening.

Perhaps in real life some people end up treated like “winners” or “losers” in general because they’ve ended up on the wrong side of the difference in wins; Harry here always seems to be ahead of Tom, even though Tom and Harry are each successful at only about half the things they attempt.

Innumeracy – John Allen Paulos

I find this is true in personal finance — not understanding the incredible scalable power of compound interestfor example, or in public finance — not grasping the power of large numbers when it comes to the national debt. Apr 15, Gina inhumeracy it it was ok.

There’s also some overlap with Thinking, Fast and Slow regarding cognitive blocks innumsracy thinking mathematically. It cracks me up that, at one point, phrenological exams were commonly a precondition of employment in big corporations! I wanted to like this book but the open Never judge a book by its cover or, in this case, by its title.