Nate Silver On The Art And Science Of Prediction

Nate Silver is the 35-year-old data engineer and forecaster with superstar status. He shot to fame in 2008 for correctly predicting the outcome in 49 out of 50 states in the US presidential election. In 2012, when most media pundits and political analysts claimed the US election was “too close to call”, Silver trumped them all again, giving Obama a 92% chance of winning. Barack Obama has called him “my rock, my foundation”, and Bryan Appleyard in the Sunday Times described him as “our age’s Brunel”.

In this event from April 2013, he came to Intelligence Squared to discuss the themes of his latest book, 'The Signal and the Noise' with Tim Harford, the FT's 'Undercover Economist'.

We hear endlessly about Big Data, but when the quantity of data in our world is increasing by 2.5 quintillion bytes per day how can we find the signal in all the noise, the nugget of information that will help us make sense of it all, or maybe even predict the future? Silver explains how expert forecasters think, and describes...

Support this show


See for privacy and opt-out information.