“Everybody lies.” – Seth Stephens-Davidowitz
New Way of Getting Data
Polling people doesn’t reveal what’s true anymore. We all found that out when Trump became our president. The reason behind this is explained very well in the new book Everybody Lies: Big Data, New Data, and What the Internet Can Tell Us About Who We Really Are by Seth Stephens-Davidowitz.
There are many points made in the book (so far, I’m not yet half way) that are not surprising, but a few that are. For example, one of the depressing but not surprising realities that surface from Google searches are that
- “Parents are two and a half times as likely to ask “Is my son gifted?” than “Is my daughter gifted?”” (Reality: Girls are 9 percent more likely to be in gifted programs than boys in school).
- “Parents Google “Is my daughter overweight?” roughly twice as frequently as they Google “Is my son overweight?”” (Reality: 28% of girls and 35% of boys are overweight).
- “Areas that supported Trump in the largest numbers were those that made the most Google searches for “nigger.””
There were a few surprising findings in this enlightening book. Here is one example. Select two people at random from any given news site, whether that be Fox News or ThinkProgress. What would you think the probability would be that the two have different political views?
My idea of the internet led me to think that it is segregated in the sense that conservatives tend to mainly view conservative sites while liberals view more liberal sites. This led to a guess that would be closer to 0% (a perfectly desegregated site would give close to 50%).
The result: 45.2%.
My ABCs of Google Searches
This idea of Google searching providing an avenue of who we really are gave me the idea of finding out who I really was by looking at my Google search history. Simply by typing each letter individually into Google, Google will fill in “suggestions” for you based on what you have searched for in the past.
Here is a glimpse of my Google ABCs:
a. amazon music
b. beersmith podcasts
c. cyanide and happiness
d. duolingo norwegian
e. eagle statue washburn campus
f. fractional reserve system
g. great taste of the midwest
h. homebrewing podcasts
i. international monetary fund
j. jse data sets and stories
k. kansas v. board of education
l. loop de loop decorah
m. mirepoix pronounce
n. nonparametric statistical methods
o. ordering prints online
p. public service announcement vertical videos
q. quantasia sharpton
r. rgb for washburn university
t. top paying statistics jobs
u. us news and world report statistician
v. videos not coming up on gopro mtp client disk volume
w. wings of freedom washburn
This speaks very highly about how big of a dork I am.