
The Theory That Would Not Die
 How Bayes' Rule Cracked the Enigma Code, Hunted Down Russian Submarines, and Emerged Triumphant from Two Centuries of Controversy
 Narrated by: Laural Merlington
 Length: 11 hrs and 51 mins
 Unabridged Audiobook
 Categories: History, World
Add to Cart failed.
Add to Wish List failed.
Remove from wishlist failed.
Adding to library failed
Follow podcast failed
Unfollow podcast failed
Buy for $24.95
No default payment method selected.
We are sorry. We are not allowed to sell this product with the selected payment method
Listeners also enjoyed...

The Signal and the Noise
 Why So Many Predictions Fail  but Some Don't
 By: Nate Silver
 Narrated by: Mike Chamberlain
 Length: 16 hrs and 21 mins
 Unabridged

Overall

Performance

Story
Nate Silver built an innovative system for predicting baseball performance, predicted the 2008 election within a hair’s breadth, and became a national sensation as a blogger  all by the time he was 30. He solidified his standing as the nation's foremost political forecaster with his near perfect prediction of the 2012 election. Silver is the founder and editor in chief of the website FiveThirtyEight. Drawing on his own groundbreaking work, Silver examines the world of prediction, investigating how we can distinguish a true signal from a universe of noisy data.


Learn About Statistics Without All The Math
 By Scott Fabel on 030913
By: Nate Silver

A Most Elegant Equation
 Euler’s Formula and the Beauty of Mathematics
 By: David Stipp
 Narrated by: Sean Pratt
 Length: 5 hrs and 2 mins
 Unabridged

Overall

Performance

Story
Bertrand Russell wrote that mathematics can exalt "as surely as poetry". This is especially true of one equation: ei(pi) + 1 = 0, the brainchild of Leonhard Euler, the Mozart of mathematics. More than two centuries after Euler's death, it is still regarded as a conceptual diamond of unsurpassed beauty. Called Euler's identity, or God's equation, it includes just five numbers but represents an astonishing revelation of hidden connections.


Good treatment of the subject
 By Kindle Customer on 040918
By: David Stipp

Significant Figures
 The Lives and Work of Great Mathematicians
 By: Ian Stewart
 Narrated by: Roger Clark
 Length: 11 hrs and 39 mins
 Unabridged

Overall

Performance

Story
In Significant Figures, acclaimed mathematician Ian Stewart introduces the visionaries of mathematics throughout history. Delving into the lives of twentyfive great mathematicians, Stewart examines the roles they played in creating, inventing, and discovering the mathematics we use today. Through these short biographies, we get acquainted with the history of mathematics.


Beware
 By Anton Kurtz on 120818
By: Ian Stewart

Bernoulli's Fallacy
 Statistical Illogic and the Crisis of Modern Science
 By: Aubrey Clayton
 Narrated by: Tim H. Dixon
 Length: 15 hrs and 14 mins
 Unabridged

Overall

Performance

Story
Aubrey Clayton traces the history of how statistics went astray, beginning with the groundbreaking work of the 17thcentury mathematician Jacob Bernoulli and winding through gambling, astronomy, and genetics. Clayton recounts the feuds among rival schools of statistics, exploring the surprisingly human problems that gave rise to the discipline and the alltoohuman shortcomings that derailed it.


Dr. Berkeley spreads reeducation for future statisticians
 By KMC on 090721
By: Aubrey Clayton

Euclid's Window
 The Story of Geometry from Parallel Lines to Hyperspace
 By: Leonard Mlodinow
 Narrated by: Robert Blumenfeld
 Length: 8 hrs and 13 mins
 Unabridged

Overall

Performance

Story
Through Euclid's Window Leonard Mlodinow brilliantly and delightfully leads us on a journey through five revolutions in geometry, from the Greek concept of parallel lines to the latest notions of hyperspace. Here is an altogether new, refreshing, alternative history of math revealing how simple questions anyone might ask about space  in the living room or in some other galaxy  have been the hidden engine of the highest achievements in science and technology.


Wow!
 By Eric on 081310
By: Leonard Mlodinow

Life’s Ratchet
 How Molecular Machines Extract Order from Chaos
 By: Peter M. Hoffman
 Narrated by: Paul Hodgson
 Length: 9 hrs and 52 mins
 Unabridged

Overall

Performance

Story
The cells in our bodies consist of molecules, made up of the same carbon, oxygen, and hydrogen atoms found in air and rocks. But molecules, such as water and sugar, are not alive. So how do our cells  assemblies of otherwise "dead" molecules  come to life, and together constitute a living being? In Life’s Ratchet, physicist Peter M. Hoffmann locates the answer to this ageold question at the nanoscale.


For biologists to learn single molecule biophysics
 By A Synthetic Biologist on 090414
By: Peter M. Hoffman

The Signal and the Noise
 Why So Many Predictions Fail  but Some Don't
 By: Nate Silver
 Narrated by: Mike Chamberlain
 Length: 16 hrs and 21 mins
 Unabridged

Overall

Performance

Story
Nate Silver built an innovative system for predicting baseball performance, predicted the 2008 election within a hair’s breadth, and became a national sensation as a blogger  all by the time he was 30. He solidified his standing as the nation's foremost political forecaster with his near perfect prediction of the 2012 election. Silver is the founder and editor in chief of the website FiveThirtyEight. Drawing on his own groundbreaking work, Silver examines the world of prediction, investigating how we can distinguish a true signal from a universe of noisy data.


Learn About Statistics Without All The Math
 By Scott Fabel on 030913
By: Nate Silver

A Most Elegant Equation
 Euler’s Formula and the Beauty of Mathematics
 By: David Stipp
 Narrated by: Sean Pratt
 Length: 5 hrs and 2 mins
 Unabridged

Overall

Performance

Story
Bertrand Russell wrote that mathematics can exalt "as surely as poetry". This is especially true of one equation: ei(pi) + 1 = 0, the brainchild of Leonhard Euler, the Mozart of mathematics. More than two centuries after Euler's death, it is still regarded as a conceptual diamond of unsurpassed beauty. Called Euler's identity, or God's equation, it includes just five numbers but represents an astonishing revelation of hidden connections.


Good treatment of the subject
 By Kindle Customer on 040918
By: David Stipp

Significant Figures
 The Lives and Work of Great Mathematicians
 By: Ian Stewart
 Narrated by: Roger Clark
 Length: 11 hrs and 39 mins
 Unabridged

Overall

Performance

Story
In Significant Figures, acclaimed mathematician Ian Stewart introduces the visionaries of mathematics throughout history. Delving into the lives of twentyfive great mathematicians, Stewart examines the roles they played in creating, inventing, and discovering the mathematics we use today. Through these short biographies, we get acquainted with the history of mathematics.


Beware
 By Anton Kurtz on 120818
By: Ian Stewart

Bernoulli's Fallacy
 Statistical Illogic and the Crisis of Modern Science
 By: Aubrey Clayton
 Narrated by: Tim H. Dixon
 Length: 15 hrs and 14 mins
 Unabridged

Overall

Performance

Story
Aubrey Clayton traces the history of how statistics went astray, beginning with the groundbreaking work of the 17thcentury mathematician Jacob Bernoulli and winding through gambling, astronomy, and genetics. Clayton recounts the feuds among rival schools of statistics, exploring the surprisingly human problems that gave rise to the discipline and the alltoohuman shortcomings that derailed it.


Dr. Berkeley spreads reeducation for future statisticians
 By KMC on 090721
By: Aubrey Clayton

Euclid's Window
 The Story of Geometry from Parallel Lines to Hyperspace
 By: Leonard Mlodinow
 Narrated by: Robert Blumenfeld
 Length: 8 hrs and 13 mins
 Unabridged

Overall

Performance

Story
Through Euclid's Window Leonard Mlodinow brilliantly and delightfully leads us on a journey through five revolutions in geometry, from the Greek concept of parallel lines to the latest notions of hyperspace. Here is an altogether new, refreshing, alternative history of math revealing how simple questions anyone might ask about space  in the living room or in some other galaxy  have been the hidden engine of the highest achievements in science and technology.


Wow!
 By Eric on 081310
By: Leonard Mlodinow

Life’s Ratchet
 How Molecular Machines Extract Order from Chaos
 By: Peter M. Hoffman
 Narrated by: Paul Hodgson
 Length: 9 hrs and 52 mins
 Unabridged

Overall

Performance

Story
The cells in our bodies consist of molecules, made up of the same carbon, oxygen, and hydrogen atoms found in air and rocks. But molecules, such as water and sugar, are not alive. So how do our cells  assemblies of otherwise "dead" molecules  come to life, and together constitute a living being? In Life’s Ratchet, physicist Peter M. Hoffmann locates the answer to this ageold question at the nanoscale.


For biologists to learn single molecule biophysics
 By A Synthetic Biologist on 090414
By: Peter M. Hoffman

The Book of Why
 The New Science of Cause and Effect
 By: Judea Pearl, Dana Mackenzie
 Narrated by: Mel Foster
 Length: 15 hrs and 14 mins
 Unabridged

Overall

Performance

Story
"Correlation does not imply causation". This mantra has been invoked by scientists for decades and has led to a virtual prohibition on causal talk. But today, that taboo is dead. The causal revolution, sparked by Judea Pearl and his colleagues, has cut through a century of confusion and placed causality  the study of cause and effect  on a firm scientific basis.


Understand the data, understand the world
 By Gary on 011319
By: Judea Pearl, and others

Shape
 The Hidden Geometry of Information, Biology, Strategy, Democracy, and Everything Else
 By: Jordan Ellenberg
 Narrated by: Jordan Ellenberg
 Length: 14 hrs and 23 mins
 Unabridged

Overall

Performance

Story
If you're like most people, geometry is a dimly remembered exercise you gladly left behind in the dust of ninth grade. It's plodding through a series of miniscule steps only to prove some fact about triangles that was obvious to you in the first place. That's not geometry. Okay, it is geometry, but only a tiny part, which has as much to do with geometry in all its flush modern richness as conjugating a verb has to do with a great novel. Shape reveals the geometry underneath some of the most important scientific, political, and philosophical problems we face.


Excellent, but not suited for an audiobook
 By Fred271 on 062121
By: Jordan Ellenberg

Infinite Powers
 How Calculus Reveals the Secrets of the Universe
 By: Steven Strogatz
 Narrated by: Bob Souer
 Length: 10 hrs and 41 mins
 Unabridged

Overall

Performance

Story
Infinite Powers recounts how calculus tantalized and thrilled its inventors, starting with its first glimmers in ancient Greece and bringing us right up to the discovery of gravitational waves. Strogatz reveals how this form of math rose to the challenges of each age: how to determine the area of a circle with only sand and a stick; how to explain why Mars goes "backwards" sometimes; how to turn the tide in the fight against AIDS.


Not written to be read aloud
 By A Reader in Maine on 022120
By: Steven Strogatz

Standard Deviations
 Flawed Assumptions, Tortured Data, and Other Ways to Lie with Statistics
 By: Gary Smith
 Narrated by: Tim Andres Pabon
 Length: 9 hrs and 20 mins
 Unabridged

Overall

Performance

Story
As Nobel Prizewinning economist Ronald Coase once cynically observed, "If you torture data long enough, it will confess." Lying with statistics is a timehonored con. In Standard Deviations, economics professor Gary Smith walks us through the various tricks and traps that people use to back up their own crackpot theories. Sometimes, the unscrupulous deliberately try to mislead us. Other times, the wellintentioned are blissfully unaware of the mischief they are committing.


Good read for all empiricist
 By Andreas Johansson on 081117
By: Gary Smith

Alan Turing: The Enigma
 By: Andrew Hodges
 Narrated by: Gordon Griffin
 Length: 30 hrs and 40 mins
 Unabridged

Overall

Performance

Story
It’s only a slight exaggeration to say that the British mathematician Alan Turing (19121954) saved the Allies from the Nazis, invented the computer and artificial intelligence, and anticipated gay liberation by decadesall before his suicide at age fortyone. This classic biography of the founder of computer science, reissued on the centenary of his birth with a substantial new preface by the author, is the definitive account of an extraordinary mind and life.


A Fantastic Biography For The Patient Listener
 By Sara on 022215
By: Andrew Hodges

How Not to Be Wrong
 The Power of Mathematical Thinking
 By: Jordan Ellenberg
 Narrated by: Jordan Ellenberg
 Length: 13 hrs and 29 mins
 Unabridged

Overall

Performance

Story
Ellenberg chases mathematical threads through a vast range of time and space, from the everyday to the cosmic, encountering, among other things, baseball, Reaganomics, daring lottery schemes, Voltaire, the replicability crisis in psychology, Italian Renaissance painting, artificial languages, the development of nonEuclidean geometry, the coming obesity apocalypse, Antonin Scalia's views on crime and punishment, the psychology of slime molds, what Facebook can and can't figure out about you, and the existence of God.


Great book but better in writing
 By Michael on 070214
By: Jordan Ellenberg

Naked Statistics
 Stripping the Dread from the Data
 By: Charles Wheelan
 Narrated by: Jonathan Davis
 Length: 10 hrs and 48 mins
 Unabridged

Overall

Performance

Story
From batting averages and political polls to game shows and medical research, the realworld application of statistics continues to grow by leaps and bounds. How can we catch schools that cheat on standardized tests? How does Netflix know which movies you'll like? What is causing the rising incidence of autism? As bestselling author Charles Wheelan shows us in Naked Statistics, the right data and a few wellchosen statistical tools can help us answer these questions and more.


Basic, but very well explained
 By Philo on 051713
By: Charles Wheelan

The Pleasure of Finding Things Out
 The Best Short Works of Richard P. Feynman
 By: Richard P. Feynman
 Narrated by: Sean Runnette
 Length: 8 hrs and 23 mins
 Unabridged

Overall

Performance

Story
The Pleasure of Finding Things Out is a magnificent treasury of the best short works of Richard P. Feynman, from interviews and speeches to lectures and printed articles. A sweeping, wideranging collection, it presents an intimate and fascinating view of a life in science  a life like no other. From his ruminations on science in our culture to his Nobel Prize acceptance speech, this book will delight anyone interested in the world of ideas.


Interesting, but material is covered in better book.
 By Erlend on 040616

The Deep Learning Revolution
 By: Terrence J. Sejnowski
 Narrated by: Shawn Compton
 Length: 8 hrs and 5 mins
 Unabridged

Overall

Performance

Story
The deeplearning revolution has brought us driverless cars, the greatly improved Google Translate, fluent conversations with Siri and Alexa, and enormous profits from automated trading on the New York Stock Exchange. Deeplearning networks can play poker better than professional poker players and defeat a world champion at Go. In this book, Terry Sejnowski explains how deep learning went from being an arcane academic field to a disruptive technology in the information economy.


An epic story of astronomical import
 By Matthew Duncan on 022519

On the Origin of Species
 By: Charles Darwin
 Narrated by: Richard Dawkins
 Length: 5 hrs and 53 mins
 Abridged

Overall

Performance

Story
Richard Dawkins, author of The God Delusion and a lifelong committed Darwinist, abridges and reads this special audio version of Charles Darwin's famous book. A literally worldchanging book, Darwin put forward the antireligious and scientific idea that humans in fact evolved over millions of generations from animals, starting with fish, all the way up through the ranks to apes, then to our current form.


A Perfect Abridgement
 By M on 052809
By: Charles Darwin

The Structure of Scientific Revolutions
 By: Thomas S. Kuhn
 Narrated by: Dennis Holland
 Length: 10 hrs and 14 mins
 Unabridged

Overall

Performance

Story
A good book may have the power to change the way we see the world, but a great book actually becomes part of our daily consciousness, pervading our thinking to the point that we take it for granted, and we forget how provocative and challenging its ideas once were  and still are. The Structure of Scientific Revolutions is that kind of book.


Great book but a hard listen.
 By Jonathan on 040912
By: Thomas S. Kuhn

The Drunkard's Walk
 How Randomness Rules Our Lives
 By: Leonard Mlodinow
 Narrated by: Sean Pratt
 Length: 9 hrs and 19 mins
 Unabridged

Overall

Performance

Story
In this irreverent and illuminating audiobook, acclaimed writer and scientist Leonard Mlodinow shows us how randomness, chance, and probability reveal a tremendous amount about our daily lives, and how we misunderstand the significance of everything from a casual conversation to a major financial setback. As a result, successes and failures in life are often attributed to clear and obvious causes, when in actuality they are more profoundly influenced by chance.


Interested in statistics? This is the book.
 By Robert on 022114
By: Leonard Mlodinow
Publisher's Summary
Bayes' rule appears to be a straightforward, oneline theorem: by updating our initial beliefs with objective new information, we get a new and improved belief. To its adherents, it is an elegant statement about learning from experience. To its opponents, it is subjectivity run amok.
In the firstever account of Bayes' rule for general readers and listeners, Sharon Bertsch McGrayne explores this controversial theorem and the human obsessions surrounding it. She traces its discovery by an amateur mathematician in the 1740s through its development into roughly its modern form by French scientist Pierre Simon Laplace. She reveals why respected statisticians rendered it professionally taboo for 150 years  at the same time that practitioners relied on it to solve crises involving great uncertainty and scanty information, even breaking Germany's Enigma code during World War II, and explains how the advent of offtheshelf computer technology in the 1980s proved to be a gamechanger. Today, Bayes' rule is used everywhere from DNA decoding to Homeland Security.
Drawing on primary source material and interviews with statisticians and other scientists, The Theory That Would Not Die is the riveting account of how a seemingly simple theorem ignited one of the greatest controversies of all time.
Critic Reviews
More from the same
What listeners say about The Theory That Would Not Die
Average Customer RatingsReviews  Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Overall

Performance

Story
 Billy
 072114
Who is the intended audience?
The book would totally baffle me if I didn't do statistics for a living because McGrayne doesn't even give an example of how Bayes' Rule works until about halfway through the book (using the cigarettes study as an example). She merely tells us that frequentists don't like it but don't explain the underly differences between their approaches. But even with all that assumed knowledge, she doesn't talk about any of the underlying math.
Thus the book assumes too much knowledge on the part of the reader for the book to be for the uninitiated but doesn't give enough information for the initiated. Who is the intended audience? I can't even tell.
19 people found this helpful

Overall

Performance

Story
 Lynn
 071512
Read Up on Baye's Before Reading
Sharon McGrayne tackles Baye’s Rule in her volume The Theory that Would Not Die. Along the way she shows how the ‘rule’ has gone under only to reappear in different times, be used in different places, and gather influence under varied circumstances. I found the narrative engaging and the history she presents informative. I wish, however, that she had had an early chapter discussing what Baye’s Rule is, how it works, and what it means to users. Baye’s Rule is well available to those with simple math ability and it seems the book would have a wider audience had she made this allowance. So, if you are familiar with Baye’s Theorem pick up the book and turn some pages. If you are not familiar with the theorem, read up on it a little and then turn those pages. There are unexpected insights in every chapter. The narration of Laural Merlington is good.
19 people found this helpful

Overall

Performance

Story
 Ronald
 051712
Poorly read
What did you like about this audiobook?
Did a good job of constructing a story about a particular statistical technique. She overdoes it. Bayes theorm is not the same as the story of Seabiscuit.
What did you find wrong about the narrator's performance?
At first I thought she was a computer generated voice. Her cadence was was odd, adding syllables at random. Many names were mispronounced.
12 people found this helpful

Overall

Performance

Story
 Mr. Anonymous
 091512
Maybe it's me, but I still don't understand Bayes
I've taken two statistics classes in my life, and I remember being confused by Bayes in both classes. So I was hoping that this book would clarify matters for me. Sadly, it didn't. I fully realize that the fault might be my own  maybe I just don't have a mind for statistics.
The book did have some interesting stories in it, such as the one about the massive search for a missing atomic bomb that fell into the ocean. However, I never did understand why Bayes' Rule was so controversial (if it works so well in practice, what's not to like about it?), and I'm just as confused as ever about the nuts & bolts of the theorem. I'm almost tempted to crack my old statistics textbooks. Almost.
Incidentally, the reader mispronounced a lot of names.
9 people found this helpful

Overall

Performance

Story
 John C.
 070219
I don't get the bad reviews...
Plain and simple, if you want to learn the intricacies of Bayes Theorem please go to a textbook, there are 100's of them out there. This book was written by a journalist on the history and important events that led to the rebirth of Bayes on the 20th century. If you're familiar with Bayes, this book for sure will give you a new perspective on the topic.
5 people found this helpful

Overall

Performance

Story
 Chris Lunt
 113012
All the wrong details
Would you like to hear about warring academic camps, or would you rather understand in detail how Bayes was applied to solve the problems mentioned in the title? If it's the latter, you'll be disappointed.
8 people found this helpful

Overall

Performance

Story
 Ivan
 111012
A fascinating story
The history of Bayesian statistics is fascinating, and this book ably tells the story of its twists and turns. I can understand why the author wants to insulate the reader from the mathematics, but I would have preferred a little more technical detail, especially as it applies to numerical methods. You'll come away from this book understanding how useful Bayesian inference is, but you probably won't learn very much about how it works.
I had no trouble understanding the narrator, but this is the first audiobook I've listened to in which some proper names (especially French names) were horribly mispronounced.
3 people found this helpful

Overall

Performance

Story
 HBOMB4276
 091712
Fun read, but no depth (if you're a math nerd)
Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?
If you are looking to hear the math behind how Bayes' Rule did the things it did, you'll come away disappointed. However, this is an entertaining history of how this theorem formed the basis for much of the successes of applied mathematics and statistics over the last 100 years.Learning many of the details of the personal lives / personalities of the some of the founding fathers of modern statistics (Fisher, Pearson, et al) and their battles over the use of this rule was one highlight of this book.
What aspect of Laural Merlington’s performance would you have changed?
Ms Merlingtons' performance was solid...very listenable especially given a relatively dry topic.
Was The Theory That Would Not Die worth the listening time?
Yes, very definitely.
7 people found this helpful

Overall

Performance

Story
 Dutch Breckinridge
 101420
Illuminated historical and personal experience of centuries of users. Well told, not technical reference.
The saga of Bayes theorem, development and uses is presented in an engaging and well told tale. The best way to think about this book is like that of Bates theorem itsel. Whatever you know prior to reading it, will be improved by the reading. The fundamental truth of closer approximation by increased data is fully explored.
The actual probability equations are rarely referenced. You will certainly know the historical and upto 2010 or so, the current authors.
I recommend this book for background and historical perspectives. Technically if you seek detailed algorithms, this is not your read.
1 person found this helpful

Overall

Performance

Story
 The Ayres
 042212
Maybe I wanted more out of this...
What did you like best about The Theory That Would Not Die? What did you like least?
This work should be tagged clearly as primarily an historical treatment of the concepts attributed to Bayes, as well as their evolution. I was hoping for more exposition of the technical details involved in many of the controversies the author documents rather than highlighting the most outrageous position statements on the part of each party. Her treatment of "classified" research and the role of government secrecy in impeding progress that allowed extreme doctrinaire positions to be taken and held for long periods among the academics involved is yet another case for free and unimpeded scientific discourse.
What was the most compelling aspect of this narrative?
For me, treatment of the ways in which application of Bayes Rule crossed so many disciplinary boundaries was enlightening. I had little idea how widespread socalled Bayesian approaches had become in Science outside the fields I'd chosen to study, Sociology and Anthropology. Socalled "Simple Random Sample" or SRS designs were the orthodoxy of the day when I was a student. Some challenged this orthodoxy with socalled "purposive" sample designs which proved to be much more efficient in a wide variety of cases.
Back when I was a graduate student and Senior Research Associate at the University of Michigan, I was asked to help faciliate "brute force" repeated replications of the process of sampling from some large datasets we had obtained from the auto industry. We used multiply replicated samples to produce empirical assessments of five theoretically proposed measures of efficiency (Standard Error of Estimate) for a variety of sample designs used to perform multivariate regression analyses on the dataset. I implemented and optimized the Fortran code used to draw the samples and tabulate the resulting theoretical and acutal measures of efficiency for each sample. The resulting PhD dissertation "sold" over a thousand copies before it had been available for six months! The tables we printed were apparently extremely useful to a variety of practicioners who knew that the underlying distributions of the phenomena they had under study were not "normal."
6 people found this helpful

Overall

Performance

Story
 David Steinsaltz
 080815
New developments in statistics breathlessly told
It's a pretty good history of Bayesian statistic, giving a good overview of the reasons why people are excited about it. Perhaps overly enthusiastic, both exaggerating the differences to other types of statistical reasoning and never making it entirely clear what distinguishes Bayesian from frequentist approaches, nor indeed what statistical reasoning is about to begin with.
The narrator is not the worst I have heard, and generally did a reasonable job of making an understandably modulated aural text. But as is often the case with scientific topics, no thought was given to finding a reader who is actually familiar with the vocabulary or the people. Thus, "theorist" consistently became "theororist", John von Neumann became "Newman", and Jerzy Neyman became "Neiman". Among others. It was still eminently listenable, but irritating.
6 people found this helpful

Overall

Performance

Story
 FergusG
 042417
Interesting book let down by poor production
Would you be willing to try another one of Laural Merlington’s performances?
The general narration was rather flat but the lack of research into common pronunciation was extremely grating. Not just the foreign (and tricky) words like "Aberystwyth" but even common words are tripped over.
Any additional comments?
I would have preferred a little more detail into the actual theorem.
2 people found this helpful

Overall

Performance

Story
 Don O'treply
 060621
Interesting topic but disappointing exposition
The book contains a lot of academic and military history regarding Bayesian statistics, which is moderately interesting. But the actual examination of Bayes theorem/formula is very superficial. I am left quite unsatisfied. The basic Bayes equation is certainly true under a very simple interpretation in terms of predicates and percentages. So where does the controversy arise? In guessing the socalledprior distribution, it seems. But Bayes formulae itself does not care about what is prior and what is posterior  it is just a relationship between the conditional probabilities AB and BA. And it follows logically from the equation P(A&B) = P(A)*P(BA) = P(B)*P(AB), which surely must be true. Do frequentists deny that? That seems unlikely. So after listening carefully to the whole of this book, I am disappointed that I could not clearly explain the difference between a frequentist and Bayesian view.

Overall

Performance

Story
 Simon Lilburn
 091817
An engaging account of subjectivist probability
A well researched popular account of the figures central to the rise of subjectivist probability in business, science, and the military. This is a weaving path through many fields, united by a preference on the part of the motley group of practitioners for using priors, more elaborated probability models, and Bayesian decision theory. The audiobook was delivered with clear narration and brought character to the work, enriching the story.
My single frustration was with the level of detail provided: often some of the descriptions of statistical models and techniques were vague, where additional details would have made for a more complete account of the work undertaken—and provided substance to claims about the novelty and ingenuity of the work itself. There is the occasional misrepresentation about some aspect of probability (particularly in what frequentist statistics can and cannot do), but these are not egregious and are usually just due to minor omissions of qualifying statements.
A recommended book for anyone who wants to hear about the contest of ideas at the boundary between mathematical formalism and uncertainty. In particular, I would recommend this book for those who work employs statistical inference to provide more context (and motivation and excitement) for the structure of the field today.