December 2013 issue of Significance available now


  • Author: Statistics Views
  • Date: 20 December 2013

Birthdays and anniversaries bring reflection; it is 10 years since the first issue of Significance came out. In the course of those years the magazine has covered shipwrecks, penguins from space, voyages to Mars, Viking warriors, hobbit men, how starlings flock and whether nightingales sing in tune, even how many fish there are in the sea and whether we are likely ever again to see a Caribbean monk seal. And also how to save orang-utans, the safety of Prozac, how much salt we should eat, whether organic food really is better for you, the 5% significance level, climate change, bees, feeding the world, whether country or town is greener, the authorship of books of the Bible, the archaeology of Pompeii and of the woods of southern England, Hollywood films, how to run faster effortlessly and the crash of 2008. Statistics is relevant to pretty nearly everything under the sun.

The December 2013 issue of Significance is now available for you to read on Wiley Online Library.

thumbnail image: December 2013 issue of Significance available now

Features of this issue include:

To celebrate the 10th birthday of Significance, Mario Cortina Borja from University College London examines the strong birthday problem.

Check out Significance’s timeline of statistics and the accompanying piece on great moments in statistics to read about a selection of statistical landmarks that changed history.

Read Julian Champkin and Alison Oliver’s interview with Nate Silver, the man who bought glamour to statistics. He talks about correctly predicting the results of the 2008 and 2012 US Presidential elections, his love for baseball and poker, and provides 10 top tips for non-statisticians who seek to use, understand or convey statistics.

Paul Craze, editor of Trends in Ecology and Evolution, asks ‘who were our ancestors?’. In his article, ‘Early human evolution and the skulls of Dmansis’, Paul takes a look at the variations between and within species.

Pádraig Mac Carron and Ralph Kenna from Coventry University’s Applied Mathematics Research Centre look at social networks from the Viking era in their article, ‘Viking sagas: Six degrees of Icelandic separation”. Their analysis of the interactions between the characters of the thousand-year-old stories of the Icelandic sagas found that social networks of the Viking era are very similar to Charles Yang, director of the Cognitive Science program at the University of Pennsylvania, looks at language statistics in his article ‘Who’s afraid of George Kingsley Zipf?’.

Eloise Peacock, ex-gambler (by her own admission), writes about beating the online casino in her article, ‘When the gambler’s fallacy comes true’.

Last but not least, Jody Aberdein and David Spiegelhalter inviestigate whether London’s roads have become more dangerous for cyclists after a sudden spike in deaths brought about a media furore.

To celebrate the International Year of Statistics, don’t forget to sign up for free access to all 2013 issues via the app. But hurry, the offer closes on 31st December 2013! For more information, please visit the Significance website.

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Published features on are checked for statistical accuracy by a panel from the European Network for Business and Industrial Statistics (ENBIS)   to whom Wiley and express their gratitude. This panel are: Ron Kenett, David Steinberg, Shirley Coleman, Irena Ograjenšek, Fabrizio Ruggeri, Rainer Göb, Philippe Castagliola, Xavier Tort-Martorell, Bart De Ketelaere, Antonio Pievatolo, Martina Vandebroek, Lance Mitchell, Gilbert Saporta, Helmut Waldl and Stelios Psarakis.