Friday, April 6, 2018

Expert forecasts, or not

More from Nate Silver:
"The more fundamental problem is that we have a demand for experts in our society but we don’t actually have that much of a demand for accurate forecasts.”

Could this be the issue? (Silver continues:)

"As [many] see it, [project] forecasters face three fundamental challenges.
  • First, it is very hard to determine cause and effect from [project] statistics alone.
  • Second, the [project circumstance] is always changing, so explanations of [project] behavior that hold in one [ ] cycle may not apply to future ones.
  • And third, as bad as their forecasts have been, the data that [project analysts] have to work with isn’t much good either."
Is this the justification for "no estimates?"

Nope, it's a caution about the real world. Other people with the money expect an estimate before work begins.

Have you ever had work done on your car or home without asking for an estimate? I hope your answer is No; and I hope you understand: stuff happens, even so.

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