Skip to content

I think we need more creativity in statistics

Fun

" 'Boa constrictors swallow their prey whole, without chewing it. After that they are not able to move, and they sleep through the six months that they need for digestion.'

I pondered deeply, then, over the adventures of the jungle. And after some work with a colored pencil I succeeded in making my first drawing.

My Drawing Number One.

It looked something like this:

Boa Constrictor by Antoine de Saint Exupéry

I showed my masterpiece to the grown-ups, and asked them whether the drawing frightened them.

But they answered: 'Frighten? Why should any one be frightened by a hat?'

My drawing was not a picture of a hat. It was a picture of a boa constrictor digesting an elephant. But since the grown-ups were not able to understand it, I made another drawing: I drew the inside of a boa constrictor, so that the grown-ups could see it clearly. They always need to have things explained.

My Drawing Number Two looked like this:

Boa Constrictor in sectional drawing by Antoine de Saint Exupéry

The grown-ups' response, this time, was to advise me to lay aside my drawings of boa constrictors, whether from the inside or the outside, and devote myself instead to geography, history, arithmetic, and grammar.

That is why, at the age of six, I gave up what might have been a magnificent career as a painter. I had been disheartened by the failure of my Drawing Number One and my Drawing Number Two.

Grown-ups never understand anything by themselves, and it is tiresome for children to be always and forever explaining things to them."

from The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint Exupéry

 

Outcome of Cases (Recovery or Death) in Germany by Worldometers

from the Corona Fun with Statistics department at Worldometers (source, archive.org link)

Tales from the Edge. #Security.

Fun

Late 2017, King county, Washington

An overworked team with an impossible mission, to create a secure Internet browser, on Windows, is called to the weekly time-waster product team meeting.

Product Manager:
Team, you know that Edge needs to be the most secure browser on the planet, right?
So how can this thing segfault if some dude from the security consultancy fuzzes the Backup.dat?

You MUST make sure this is protected. It MUST be a violation of Windows Policy to modify the file. Go, make it happen! Report back next week!

The team disperses.

Early next morning, at a set of tables in the middle of a dimly lit cube farm...

Developer:
Hey, team lead, do you know what the PM meant with "Windows Policy"? I never heard about a "Windows Policy". Is this the "Group Policy"? Or did he mean the product license? Like the shrink-wrap contract? Do we need to consult legal?

Team lead:
Oh, ffs, Bob. No time for discussion. The requirement is crystal clear. Implement it. You're the security lead. We have a deadline approaching.

Developer:
O.k., boss. I'll see what I can do.

Windows Edge backup folder "Protected - It is a violation of Windows Policy to modify"

Continue reading "Tales from the Edge. #Security."

855 years and counting

Fun

Dear marketing managers:

  1. Test your scripts before using them on real customers
  2. Server images don't show in emails these days anymore

Dear developers:

  1. Test your scripts before deploying them in production
  2. Add (configurable) sanity checks to customer visible output according to the underlying business logic
SPG mailing fail
SPG mailing fail