I often tell my students, “When you have a question, ask, because you’re probably not the only one who’s wondering.” I heard the same thing when I was a student, but I still felt embarrassed to ask. What if I really was the only one? Wouldn’t I be slowing down class to ask? If no … More If you have a question, someone else probably has it too…
Here’s an amusing way dispersity, a measure of how different the sizes of objects in a collection are, crops up in classroom management. Imagine that I’m a teacher who wants more participation in class. More specifically, during class discussions a few of my students are regular contributors, but I want everyone to join in on … More Dispersity in the classroom
On billboards, during movie theater previews, among those ads for lawyers and ESL teachers on public transit—I love coming across instances of the “Your advertisement could be here!” filler that advertising companies use when their advertising space goes unfilled. For one thing, I’m tickled by the meta-ness of advertising for advertising. For another, some of the more creative … More Your Advertisement Here!
This is my take on a classic probability paradox, the case of Sleeping Beauty. Along the way I’ll explain what I think is wrong with a classic rule of inference, Bayes’ Rule, and what needs to be done to fix it, but I hope you enjoy the paradox even if you don’t have a background in … More The Sleeping Beauty Paradox
Today’s post is a short paradox about averages, and how they don’t always match expectations. Imagine you’re a freshman college student, happily confident of a personalized education—after all, your college boasts an average class size of a mere 10 students per course. But when you arrive, most of your classes have far more students than … More The class size paradox