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RE: statistics - for differences between accessible and non-acce ssible sites?

From: Steven McCaffrey <SMCCAFFR@MAIL.NYSED.GOV>
Date: Fri, 11 Jan 2002 11:26:36 -0500
Message-Id: <sc3ecbee.028@MAIL.NYSED.GOV>
To: <Ian.SHARPE@cambridge.sema.slb.com>, <simon.white@jkd.co.uk>, <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
I think there are some valid points on this thread about the potential misuse or misapplication of certain specific statistics, but I think we should clarify where the problem lies.
Borrowing the form, but not the content, of a well known phrase used by <unnamed>,
"Statistics don't lie, people do."
The point is a bit more subtle in that the "lie" is usually an implied inference from the statistics rather than any given statistic.
Statistics is the best tool humans have developed precisely to avoid deceiving ourselves which is why it is the bedrock of science.
Not only does it allow precise quantification of the subject matter itself, but it also gives us a way to quantify the degree to which our statements may be in error.
It is, I agree, troubling that some continue to misuse this very helpful tool of thought and communication.

Received on Friday, 11 January 2002 11:27:31 UTC

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