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Sunday, February 12, 2017

Assault on Truth



As most know, Hans Rosling passed away this week. As a Sunday reflection, a few timely sentences from Keith Devlin, in tribute to him, via a comment at his own blog:
For all his engaging presentation skills, the numbers were at the heart of Rosling's talks. It was not his oratory that convinced us, in an instant, that our preconceptions of our world were wrong -- often violently so. It was the data -- the numbers displayed on the screen in front of us…“As it happens, Rosling's death comes at a moment in time when people in highly powerful positions are waging an assault on scientific facts, on numerical data, and indeed on truth in general…“An attack on truth is an attack on Society in general. Those of us whose lives revolve around discovering and communicating numerical and mathematical truth have a duty to speak up forcefully, in opposition. If our Society loses the respect for, and dependency on, truth, the loss of mathematics will be the least of our worries.”




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