Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Silver swan hits the Republicans

If you see the world through Republican eyes (US only),
then you might see Nate Silver as the Grim Reaper.

But anyway, this baseball stats nerd got it right, and
he didn't even budget in for Karl Rove cancelling
the Cleveland Ohio votes, because it didn't happen!
I guess he figured that Anonymous would ride in
to the rescue. The man is a prophet.

checkit:  The Observer

Nate Silver: it's the numbers, stupid
The poker player and baseball nerd turned political forecaster won fame after predicting the result of the US election with uncanny accuracy. And as his star rises so too does that of a whole new generation of 'quants' leading the digital revolution
        Carole Cadwalladr
        Saturday 17 November 2012 19.01 GMT

Nate Silver is a new kind of political superstar. One who actually knows what he's talking about. In America, punditry has traditionally been about having the right kind of hair or teeth or foaming rightwing views. Silver has none of these. He just has numbers. Lots of them. And, on the night of the US presidential election, they were proved to be right in quite spectacular fashion.

For weeks and months, the election had been "too close to call". Pundit after pundit declared that the election could "go either way". That it was "neck and neck". Only it wasn't. In the end, it turned out not to be neck and neck at all. Or precisely what Nate Silver had been saying for months. On election day, he predicted Obama had a 90.9% chance of winning a majority in the electoral votes and by crunching polling data he successfully predicted the correct result in 50 out of 50 states.

"You know who won the election tonight?" asked the MSNBC TV news anchor, Rachel Maddow. "Nate Silver."

Twitter went into meltdown. The blogosphere went Nate Silvertastic. Sales of his first book, The Signal and the Noise: The Art and Science of Prediction leapt 800% overnight and went to number two in the bestseller charts. And whole portions of the media decided that this wasn't just a personal triumph for Nate Silver – it was the triumph of the nerds. One man and his mathematical model had bested an entire political class of journalists, spin doctors, hacks and commentators.