Thursday, November 25, 2004

Vote tallies as noise meters

As of today it's down to 42 votes out of 3 million, as I understand it, deciding which of two people will be governor of the state of Washington. So the electorate prefers 50.000007% to 49.9999993% the winner over the loser in Washington state, which is two orders of magnitude smaller than the smallest point lead that could be regarded as statistically significant (i.e. square root of N over N). The system is swamped with noise, folks. Watch out. When it gets this noisy almost anybody can get elected.

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