Sunday, March 30, 2008

How dramatically did Joe DiMaggio's major-league record of 56 straight games with at least one hit, accomplished in 1941, stake out the rare extremes of probabilistic territory? Not that dramatically, according to a new analysis in today's New York Times.

The computer-simulation study was conducted by a Cornell University duo, graduate student Samuel Arbesman and applied mathematics professor Steven Strogatz. My first exposure to Strogatz's writings came roughly five years ago, when I read his book, Sync, which I highly recommend. Strogatz has a well-deserved reputation for providing clear explanations of complex scientific concepts for a general, educated lay audience.

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