I’ll have the page proofs for *Uncertainty* mid week and I’ve until 10 June to turn them back in. (I begin teaching on the 13th.) This puts publication in early July. They say.

Probably a good guess, too, because I’m sure they want to have it available for the big statistical meeting held every August, this year in Chicago. One of its main features is a book fair. No, I won’t be there. Costs too much; besides, I’m no longer a member of any organization.

The Lord only knows what typos my enemies have placed in the draft. Besides them, and judging from my re-re-re-…-re-perusal of the manuscript, the corrections should be small stuff. Yet like I said yesterday, I’m already seeing places where I’d like to amplify arguments. I can also see one superfluous example, a distraction, I’d cut.

Also, the editor asked me to begin working on Chapter questions so that the book, in its triumphant second edition, can be used also a textbook. I do *not* want the book to swell in size to the point at which it is off-putting or intimidating, however.

The math is minimal. On purpose. Those who know the math already know it and don’t need to see more of it, and those who don’t wouldn’t be able to absorb a bunch of math *and* the new philosophy. And anyway, the philosophy is the point. There is nothing *mathematically* wrong with frequentism and Bayes, so there is no profit attempting to find mathematical shortcomings of those old philosophies.

Good math is beside the point. Once an equation, proved true to the satisfaction of every mathematician, is in hand, it does *not*—it most certainly does not—mean the *application* of the equation is what the mathematician says it is. Mathematicians must take a back seat to philosophers and engineers in deciding useful applications of their work. Your hand-crafted probability space—what a keen sigma field you have!—may sparkle and shine and be worth a theorem or two, but that it’s used in describing a p-value shows it has no practical value.

**Law breaker**

I received this nice note yesterday.

Dr. Briggs,

I must admit I am a fan of your work in the field of statistics. I myself am a recently graduated high school student who took AP statistics my senior year as I plan on majoring in Financial Engineering. However, I was led to your book “Breaking the Law of Averages” by a PhD in mathematics whom I am also grateful to call a close friend. He showed me your works and allowed me to decide my thoughts on frequentist statistics versus Bayesian statistics and I must admit I am now a convert.

However, while reading through your works I encountered a problem which you have no doubt heard feedback about before. I have been doing the homework that accompanies the book but the lack of answers makes it difficult for me to check my work. I run my answers by my friend who has the PhD in mathematics but I would ideally like your work to see how you solve your problems and to gain insight into your way of thinking (which I have grown accustomed to through reading your blog and listening to your podcasts as well).

I can only imagine how busy you must be and therefore I understand if you are not able to respond in a quick manner I just wanted to reach out to you for your insight and help with an aspiring statistician (to a degree I must concede).

Thank you for all your work and please keep posting, your work and philosophy truly does inspire and allows me to view the world from a new perspective that I appreciate and often agree with,

BJ

BJ,

Yes, I’ve been asked lots about solutions to the book. I don’t have them. I wrote *BLOA* quickly for use as an Intro text. I’ve used it successfully for many years, and updated only a couple of times, because I’ve spent most of my time on *Uncertainty.*

Ideally, I’d go back to *BLOA* and cut out the material on R, which is no longer necessary since it’s all on-line, and I’d redo the questions; plus, I’d do some reorganizing to bring it in line with *Uncertainty.* Ideally.

*Uncertainty* is not an introductory book for entering college students.

Way I do it in class is have students go to the board, one by one, and lead the group in an answer. I only kibitz when they stray too far from the farm. I only assign reading for homework—but I’m always asking questions to make sure who knows what.

Point: I never wrote down the answers. And when I’ve gone back to try, I realize I have to redo the whole book. Thanks for the encouragement!