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Fifty Challenging Problems in Probability with Solutions (Dover Books on Mathematics) Paperback – May 1, 1987
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From the Back Cover
About the Author
Charles Frederick Mosteller ( 1916–2006) was one of the eminent statisticians of the 20th century. He was the founding chairman of Harvard's Statistics department. Dr. Mosteller wrote more than 50 books and more than 350 papers, with over 200 coauthors.
Frederick Mosteller: Harvard Man
Frederick Mosteller (1916–2006) founded Harvard University's Department of Statistics and served as its first chairman from 1957 until 1969 and again for several years in the 1970s. He was the author or co-author of more than 350 scholarly papers and more than 50 books, including one of the most popular books in his field, first published in 1965 and reprinted by Dover in 1987, Fifty Challenging Problems in Probability with Solutions.
Mosteller's work was wide-ranging: He used statistical analysis of written works to prove that James Madison was the author of several of the Federalist papers whose authorship was in dispute. With then–Harvard professor and later Senator Daniel P. Moynihan, he studied what would be the most effective way of helping students from impoverished families do better in school — their answer: to improve income levels rather than to simply spend on schools. Later, his analysis of the importance to learning of smaller class sizes buttressed the Clinton Administration's initiative to hire 100,000 teachers. And, as far back as the 1940s, Mosteller composed an early statistical analysis of baseball: After his team, the Boston Red Sox, lost the 1946 World Series, he demonstrated that luck plays an enhanced role in a short series, even for a strong team.
In the Author's Own Words:
"Though we often hear that data can speak for themselves, their voices can be soft and sly." — Frederick Mosteller
Top customer reviews
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This book takes off where I ended up. The first problem is a variation on the "reach into a bag" probability problem. (Q: You reach into a drawer with red socks and black socks, and the probability of drawing 2 red socks is P=0.5. What is the minimum number of both colored socks?)
You won't find the typical probability problems that can be quickly solved with basic combinatorial analysis or the Bernoulli Coefficient. You'll find variations and completely new worlds of probability. The explanations are thorough but succinct, and will arm you with a new skill set for solving such problems.
There's no other book like it on Amazon, and for $7...
Comparable to Huff's "How to Lie with Statistics" in its originality and straight-forwardness.
I've always had a love of brain teasers and this is like a book of brain teasers for math majors, which is great. There are several levels of questions, going from kinda hard to very hard.
This book is a good diversion when I have a few minutes to spare at work.
Though I've worked through the problems a couple of times, I bought a replacement copy when my original was "permanently borrowed" from my desk at work.