Archive for Stigler’s Law

Monty Hall closes the door

Posted in Books, Kids, pictures with tags , , , , , , , , , on October 1, 2017 by xi'an

Among much more dramatic news today, I learned about Monty Hall passing away, who achieved long lasting fame among probabilists for his TV game show leading to the Monty Hall problem, a simple conditional probability derivation often leading to arguments because of the loose wording of the conditioning event. By virtue of Stigler’s Law, the Monty Hall game was actually invented earlier, apparently by the French probabilist Joseph Bertrand, in his Calcul des probabilités. The New York Times article linked with the image points out the role of outfits with the game participants, towards being selected by the host, Monty Hall. And that one show had a live elephant behind a door, instead of a goat, elephant which freaked out..!

Benford’s Law satisfies Stigler’s Law

Posted in Books, Statistics, University life with tags , , , , on June 18, 2009 by xi'an

Looking around for other entries on Benford’s Law, I found this nice entry that attributes Benford’s Law to the astronomer Simon Newcomb, instead of Benford (who rediscovered the distribution fifty years later). This is quite in line with Stigler’s Law of Eponymy, which states that (almost) no scientific law is named after its original discoverer. The post of Peter Coles also covers the connection between Benford’s Law and Jeffreys’ prior for scale parameters, which is discussed in Jim Berger’s Statistical Decision Theory and Bayesian Analysis.