Categorie: Statistiek

The true winners of the Olympic Games

In July 2021 the 32nd Olympic Summer Games will take place. Or at least, that is the plan of the Japanese organizers and the International Olympic Committee. With the COVID-19 pandemic rates rising in Japan and global concerns whether organizing such a large event is responsible, it is not yet clear whether this plan is realistic. However, athletes around the world have no time to worry about this uncertainness. They need to be ready for when the time comes to defend the honour and glory of their country. This raises the question: which country actually […]

16 februari • Door Sjors Keet Tijd om te lezen Estimated reading time: 6 minuten
family name

Will your family name ever go extinct?

Nowadays, in most countries, everyone has a surname. Some names are very common, like “de Jong” in the Netherlands, or for example “Nguyễn” in Vietnam, where almost 40% of the population has this surname. On the other hand, some surnames are extremely rare. For instance in Thailand, where surnames were largely introduced in 1913 and no family was allowed to duplicate any existing surnames. Perhaps, you have a very rare surname yourself. Then you might have asked yourself this question: will my family name ever go extinct? In this article, I will demonstrate a mathematical […]

21 januari • Door Stan Koobs Tijd om te lezen Estimated reading time: 4 minuten
The medical test paradox

The medical test paradox

Testing has been quite a significant subject during this pandemic. Around 30.000 people a day are being tested in the Netherlands alone, so it is quite important that such a test can accurately predict whether someone actually has the disease. However, an accurate test is not always as predictive as you would like. This phenomenon is also known as “the medical test paradox”.   Bayes’ rule The medical test paradox is an example that is quite often used to introduce Bayes’ rule. In Bayesian statistics, the interpretation of probability is expressed as a degree of […]

07 januari • Door Sam Ansari Tijd om te lezen Estimated reading time: 7 minuten

The EU emission deal: a small step into a greener direction

5 years ago, the world united in a way that it had almost never seen before: in Paris, on the 12th of december 2015, 196 countries agreed on tackling climate change and limiting global warming at the end of this age by a max of 2 degrees Celsius compared to pre-industrial levels.  However, the optimism didn’t last long. With Trump stepping out of the agreement, international collaboration reducing and the earth heating up by 1.2 degrees Celsius already, the UN has ringed all arm bells. It claims it is crucial to cut our emissions by […]

17 december • Door Sjors Keet Tijd om te lezen Estimated reading time: 3 minuten

Reversion to mediocrity

Nowadays, research in many fields involves statistics. Whether it comes down to a government’s decisions on measures fighting a pandemic or the Red Bull formula 1 racing team deciding on whether Verstappen should swap tires in the next lap, it sounds like a good idea to back the decision with statistics. For a fair amount of time, appliance of statistics has seemed one of the most irrefutable means of proving a claim or, in other situations, coming to the right conclusion. In their essence, statistics seem, when employed properly, to be telling the story as-is, […]

15 december • Door Pieter Dilg Tijd om te lezen Estimated reading time: 5 minuten
Hot hand

Do basketball players have a hot hand?

If you are a basketball fan, you are probably familiar with the term: the hot hand. This is often used when a player is on a scoring streak and it seems likely that he will also score the next point. He is very confident, he feels good, and therefore it seems like his hand is just “on fire”. Former Chicago Bulls coach Doug Collins famously told about their tactic at the end of the match when Michael Jordan was doing well: “Get the ball to Michael and everybody get the f*** out of the way”. […]

01 december • Door Stan Koobs Tijd om te lezen Estimated reading time: 8 minuten
Homeowners' behavior model

Can we statistically estimate homeowners’ propensity to put a property for sale?

The number of transactions in the property market depends on many sectors of the economy. Fundamentals such as demographics, productivity, and income play a significant role in generating volatility in house prices. In general, transactions on the housing market are determined by how quickly houses are sold and at the same time how quickly appear on the market. How quickly houses come off in a sale the market depends on a process involving buyers and sellers. On the other hand, how quickly houses show up on the housing market depends on the decisions of homeowners […]

17 november • Door Moesen Tajik Tijd om te lezen Estimated reading time: 5 minuten

Rethink the way you think about randomness!

Imagine you get the opportunity to flip a coin for only 1 dollar : if it turns up heads, you win 50% and if it turns up tails you lose 40% of your initial bet. Of course we’re all familiar with calculating expected payoffs: since this bet has an expected payoff of 0.5*1.5 + 0.5*0.6=1.05, you should take it. Right? Well, it might be a little less obvious.   Suppose you flip the coin another time. Your wealth will, depending on the flips, either be 2.25 (two heads), 0.9 (one heads, one tails),  or 0.36 […]

12 november • Door Simon Elgersma Tijd om te lezen Estimated reading time: 5 minuten

Donald Duck and the magic wheel

Donald Duck, the unfortunate duck that we all know and love, has had it. He angrily shouts at Scrooge McDuck: “every single day I’m brushing coins for you, and yet you barely pay me enough to buy food for my own nephews. I demand a raise!” Scrooge responds: “No way! A lazybones like you should be happy that I’m not firing you! But if you really want a shot at earning more money, you can have this magic wheel that I got from the prince of Farawayland as part of a trading deal. He told […]

03 november • Door Sjors Keet Tijd om te lezen Estimated reading time: 7 minuten

Do storks deliver babies?

When you were still a little child, you were probably told that all babies were delivered by storks. Later, when you got older, you found out that this idea is total nonsense. However, imagine that you are still in doubt whether this idea is true, and to discover the truth, you want to use your statistical abilities. As it turns out, from a statistical point of view it seems that storks really do deliver babies. Or does it not? Robert Matthews In the year 2000, Robert Matthews, professor at Aston University, published an academic paper […]

15 oktober • Door Stan Koobs Tijd om te lezen Estimated reading time: 3 minuten
The Birthday Problem

The Birthday Problem

At the World Cup in Brazil in 2014, in 16 out of the 32 teams two players shared the same birthday. Considering each of these selections consisted of 23 players and there are 365 days in a year (excluding February 29), it seems like an enormous coincidence that this was the case for 50 percent of the teams. However, this trivia fact isn’t such a coincidence at all. In fact, the odds of two people in a group of 23 sharing the same birthday is 50.7 percent. This is what we call the birthday problem […]

13 oktober • Door Casper de Vries Tijd om te lezen Estimated reading time: 4 minuten
True randomness

What is true randomness?

The shuffle function on Spotify is an easy way to listen to music without having to pick some numbers. However, once in a while we all seem to recognize patterns in the numbers that we listen to. The shuffle function does not seem to be so random at all, so are these numbers truly randomly picked? This recognition of a sequence is partially caused by the functioning of our brain. It is very easy for the brain to distinguish patterns in seemingly random things like shuffled music or dice roles. Especially when these “processes” are […]

18 juni • Door Casper de Vries Tijd om te lezen Estimated reading time: 3 minuten

By Daniele Zedda • 18 February

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