I hate stats

5 07 2010

Ok, I don’t really hate them. I am deeply suspicious of their use, especially when applied to eliciting aspects of the human condition. So, it was with great relief that I came across an article by Karl who quotes Jung:

“If, for instance, I determine the weight of each stone in a bed of pebbles and get an average weight of 145 grams, this tells me very little about the real nature of the pebbles. Anyone who thought, on the basis of these findings, that he could pick up a pebble of 145 grams at the first try would be in for a serious disappointment. Indeed, it might well happen that however long he searched he would not find a single pebble weighing exactly 145 grams.”

Quite simple, quite brilliant.

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