The Importance of Numbers

Now that we have got you Literate :-), Let us check whether you are Numerate too. John Allen Paulos asserts that most of us are not. 

In Paulos's words - "I remember once listening to someone at a party drone on about the difference between 'continually' and 'continuously'. Later that evening we were watching the news and the TV weathercaster announced there was 50% chance of rain on Saturday and 50% chance of rain on Sunday and therefore 100% chance of rain over the weekend. The remark went right by the self styled grammarian, and even after I explained the mistake to him, he wasn't nearly as indignant ....."

Personally, I thought I was reasonably good with numbers. I didn't realize how innumerate I was till I went through Paulos's book

Mathematical Illiteracy and its consequences.

Do you know the difference between a billion and a trillion? That the probability of being killed by a terrorist is 1 out of 1.6 million as compared to 1 out of 5,300 of dying in a car crash? That all you need to do to establish yourself as a stock market (scam) expert and give 500 people six correct predictions in a row is to start with 32000 people? 

So double check your numerical literacy by picking Paulos's Book


(Note: This book is written in humorous style as far as the narrative is concerned but gets extremely serious every time Paulos gets to the numbers. He is a whiz at Mathematics and it shows, sometimes leaving you dazed with numbers.)  


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