Everybody Lies: The Inside Story of Everybody’s Truths, Secrets and Lies was written by Steven Pinker, a science writer, and it is indeed a unique title. I first read the book when it was originally published as a New York Times Magazine Bestseller (and then reviewed in the Wall Street Journal) and was fascinated by it. The premise behind Everybody Lies is that ‘patterns of lying routinely shape our reality’. And this new book is indeed about a totally new way of looking at the human mind, literally.
STEPANSTANDS-DAVIDOVAC & ALLIES: The Human Condition, The New Science of Lie Detection by Steven Pinker (with Francis Wilkinson) – Book Review Here is a review of everybody lies: the inside story of how Pinker and his research partner, Davididine Gauchter, exposed a huge network of double-traders who had conspired to manipulate the figures used by banks to determine their risk profile, or credit risk. This massive leak by traders gave the public a voice, letting them know that large banks and other large financial institutions were purposefully keeping them on a short leash. This book tells us about all of the other details of the investigation, and what it means for current policy makers. It also tells us that Pinker and Wilkinson do an excellent job at communicating the findings of their paper. Although the data they obtained has been made available to the public, we will never know exactly how truthful any of their predictions were until years later.
BIG STATA: Data Science For Life and Death – A Brief Introduction by David Klein (with James Griffiths) – Book Review Here is a review of everyone lies: the inside story of how Pinker and his team exposed a massive network of international double-traders who had conspired to manipulate the figures used by banks to determine their risk profile. This book tells us about all the other details of their investigation, and what it means for current policy makers. Although the data they obtained has been made publicly available, we will never know exactly how true any of their predictions were until years later. However, this book is an exceptional introduction to the subject of data science and is recommended for anyone who is already familiar with this new field.
THE POWER OF BIG STATA: How To harness the power of new data to solve business and societal problems, with a twist. – Book Review Here’s a review of everybody lies: the inside story of how Pinker and his team exposed a massive network of international double-traders who had conspired to manipulate the figures used by banks to determine their risk profile. The main theme of this book is that while big data has created enormous opportunities for entrepreneurs, it also creates new risks. By focusing on the aspect of trust when deciding to use new data, these researchers provide the new data scientist a ground on which to build his or her case.
EVERYBODY LIE: The Inside Story of Everybody Lies by STEPhens-Davidowitz andioned the possibility that social media could be a tool that could help the public to regulate its own institutions. “The power of social media” has been the most read articles in the technology industry in the last few years, so it’s no surprise that this book covered a few topics that resonate with the people who work at the top of the industry. This collection of short reports provides the social media expert with a comprehensive survey of the latest trends, and a philosophical look at the ethics of Big Data. Although many of the recommendations in the book are applicable to traditional data sets, STEPhens-Davidowitz andowitz also take an unusual turn when they consider their recommendations for government use of big data.
BEWARE THE INFLUENCE: When people realize that they can manipulate the public data that forms the backbone of modern business and government, they will not hesitate to take advantage of this power. Many of the methods that were once reserved for the criminal justice system and intelligence agencies have now found their way into the hands of ordinary folks, and they have not held back. The fear that is felt by many people about Big Data is not simply a product of paranoia. In fact, many current security problems stem from the misuse of official datasets. There are many potential threats to the integrity of our political process and our economy if this trend continues unchecked.
ANALYTIC RESEARCH: Another feature of Everybody Lies is the book’s introduction to the scientific methodology used by the authors. Although many people might immediately think of a molecular biology laboratory as the place to play around with flies, this isn’t the case. The scientific process used by STEPhens-Davidowitz andowitz involves the use of large scale statistical analysis and the use of quantitative data to support any theory. It isn’t hard to see how some people could find this intimidating, but the authors quickly explain that their work relies on statistical significance and rigorous methods, both of which are common among those in the scientific community.
EVALUATION: Although everybody lies about big data, it is perhaps only in the most extreme of circumstances that we should expect good data science practices from our elected representatives. Unfortunately, this does not appear to be the standard under which our elected officials are working. In fact, when it comes to the recent congressional hearings on healthcare reform, the most transparent hearings I have ever seen were those conducted by the House Energy and Commerce Committee. The witnesses interviewed were experts in their fields, and each and every one of them provided an insightful and accurate testimony. In contrast, when it comes to healthcare policy and transparency, the committees seem more concerned with scoring political points than with any type of evidence-based approach to improving the health care system.