Ron Sandland recently wrote about the new phenomenon of 'big data' - weighing up the benefits and concerns. Terry Speed reflected on the same issue in a talk earlier this year inGothenburg, Sweeden noting that this is nothing new to statisticians. So what's all the fuss about? Here's another take on the 'big data' bandwagon.
Numeracy in decline? - let me count the ways. 17 March 2010
A report (click here to download a copy) just released by the Group of Eight (Go8) Australian universities concludes that we're going backwards with respect to numeracy.
According to the report "Australia has gone backwards over the last 20 years in terms of the quality and quantity of students completing Year 12 mathematics".
The review also notes that Australia has lost its once prominent position in statistics and now takes a back seat to countries like Taiwan. To redress this Recommendation #6 states:
The Go8 should pay particular attention to Statistics, the ongoing consulting needs within the universities, the training of the next generation and the recovery of a strong research culture.
Let's hope that part of that training is devoted to redressing the 'statistical 'turn-off'' that many people experience after interacting (either formally through coursework or casually through consulting) with statisticians. As David Fox argues (see sidebar article The Future of Statistics and Statisticians) the (statistics) profession also needs to reverse the "statistical hormetic effect".