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Welcome to Drunks and Lampposts

Welcome to Drunks and Lampposts, our new statistics and data related blog.

We’re both big fans of the world wide web as a fantastic learning and doing resource: it has never been easy to learn the theory behind a new technique, but then also be able to implement that with your own data and answer your own questions.

Over the next few months, we’ve got some interesting topics lined up, including a series of tutorials about getting set up with cloud computing and how to use various open source and/or free tools to perform interesting analyses based on freely available data. Yes… we’re very cheap.

We’ll try and do a mixture of topical posts along with some regular series and other things that we haven’t thought of yet.

And why “Drunks and Lampposts”? From a quote that we like, which is quite a good summary of what a lot of statistics tend to be used for:

 “Statistics are used much like a drunk uses a lamppost—for support, not illumination” 

Vin Scully

We hope to give you a bit more of the illumination.

Any feedback is gratefully received, in the comments, via email at drunks.lampposts@gmail.com or even on twitter @drunkslampposts .

Mark and Simon

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3 thoughts on “Welcome to Drunks and Lampposts

  1. The other drunk/lamppost line I like to use, and sometimes even in a statistical context, is that the drunk looks for his lost keys under the lamppost not because he lost them there, but because he can’t see in the dark to look anywhere else.

    Posted by Stubborn Mule | January 30, 2012, 1:40 am
  2. I thought that was originally a Andrew Lang quote.

    Posted by henery | October 20, 2012, 12:31 am
  3. He uses statistics as a drunken man uses lamp posts — for support rather than illumination.
    -Andrew Lang. Scottish poet.1844-1912

    Posted by some guy | May 22, 2013, 5:43 pm

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