# QUOTES

Patrick Suppes

The fundamental laws of natural phenomena are essentially probabilistic rather
than deterministic in character.

Norman Swartz

All statistical propositions that satisfy all other requirements for
physical lawfulness are physical laws.

Eric Horvitz

Probablity is at the foundation of any intelligence
in an uncertain world.

# ARTICLES

*Statistical mechanics unifies different ecological patterns*

by Roderick C. Dewar and Annabel Porté

Maximum relative entropy as a tool for applying statistical mechanics to
ecology. (Abstract)

*What characterises a useful concept of causation in epidemiology?*

by J. Olsen

The best concept of causation is the concept that provides the most interesting
and useful results.

*Determinism versus stochasticism: in support of long coffee breaks*

by C. C. Tam and B. A. Lopman

Response to Olsen: developing new frameworks of causation will be crucial
for expanding the boundaries of epidemiology and liberating the field from
the confines of individualism.

*Odds Are, It's Wrong*

Supposedly, the proper use of statistics makes relying on scientific results
a safe bet. But in practice, widespread misuse of statistical methods makes
science more like a crapshoot.

*Chance*

Comprehensive discussion of chance from *The Information
Philosopher*.

*Tychism*

by Andrew Reynolds

Tychism is the thesis that the world contains real possibilities left undetermined
by mechanical laws and initial conditions, these being decided by chance
and thereby explaining the emergence of genuine novelty and variety in the
universe.

*The
Truth Wears Off*

by Jonah Lehrer

Many results that are rigorously proved and accepted start shrinking in later
studies.

*Species abundance distribution results from a spatial analogy of central
limit theorem*

by Arnošt L. Šizling et al

The theory presented here provides a direct link between the frequency distribution
of species abundances and the spatial correlation structure of species distributions,
and thus between several fundamental descriptors of community structure.

# DEMONSTRATIONS

Andrew
M. Rappe, *JAVA Simulation of the Ideal Gas*

The Maxwell-Boltzmann distribution is an important scientific principle which
describes how energy is distributed in a system. A JAVA applet allows you
to visualize and explore the Maxwell-Boltzmann distribution.

# VIDEOS

**John Mighton on The Ubiquitous Bell Curve**

Are the laws of randomness so strong that we're stuck with existing distributions of educational achievement in mathematics?

*The Secret Life of Chaos*

Chaos theory answers a question that mankind has asked for millennia - how
did we get here? (1-hour
film) (5-minute
preview)

AusHSI Research Notes

Videos designed to give a quick overview about statistical research techniques
used at the Australian Centre for Health Services Innovation.

*On the Causes of Effects*

by Stephen E. Fienberg

Discussions of the two concepts, "the effects of causes" and "the
causes of effects," go far back in the philosophical literature but
remain murky.

# IMAGES

**Einstein,
dice and the bell curve**

# LINKS TO BOOK DESCRIPTIONS

*Chance:
The Life of Games & the Game
of Life*

by Joaquim P. Marques de Sá

The mathematics of chance in a broad variety of contexts.

*Laws
of the Game: How the Principles of Nature Govern Chance*

by Manfred Eigen

The unique feature of this book is the invention of a selection of games
(in the format of beads on a board, with moves affected by die throws)
designed to mimic aspects of science models. The point is that "dice
and rules" is a good description for scientific modeling involving
probability.

# LINKS

Stochastikon

Stochastic methods for modelling, for reducing, and for controlling uncertainty,
in contrast to the methods of traditional science.

**Non-technical
books relating to Probability**

The notion of “chance” in these books is much broader than what mathematically-oriented
readers regard as “probability.”

Normal Distribution

Many things closely follow a Normal Distribution: heights of people, size
of things produced by machines, errors in measurements, blood pressure,
marks on a test...