Apple famously had to make their iPod shuffle function non-random because people didn't believe that the shuffle function was truly random. Tracks from the same album clumped together for instance, and some tracks were hardly played at all. Of course we should expect such patterns in randomness, but that is not necessarily what we want from shuffle play.
Spotify has a great radio function, which is similar to shuffle play, except it isn't bound by your music collection. It let's you like/dislike tracks and it uses this information to improve its choice of tracks to play. Can I propose that we name this the "Bayesian shuffle"?
On an unrelated note here is a picture of Matt Prior's posterior.
I was discussing the shortage of organs for transplant a few months ago and what was said has really stuck in my mind. I was asked what I thought about forcing people to opt out rather than opt in from organ donation. I was not in favour saying you can't assume that people are OK with you mutilating their body. It's an irreversable process after all. And it wasn't so long ago that dismembering the body was thought to prevent the soul going to heaven.
(This article was published in The Actuary magazine and is the work of a working party of which I was a member)
Ross Evans, Angelina Lai, Eamonn Phelan and Derek McLean consider the options for minimising balance sheet volatility
25 JULY 2012 | ROSS EVANS, ANGELINA LAI, EAMONN PHELAN AND DEREK MCLEAN
|Dave J's TDF mini league :|
Last Updated: 25/07/2012 09:31:21
|1||Cest Le Blaireau||78||2219|
|3||Its Millar Time||107||1614|
Immunisation is good. I'm a big fan. I'm going to write that first before anyone misunderstands me. But it's also a dressed up game of chicken, which means that it makes logical sense for people not to get themselves vaccinated when other people do. (I've seen immunisation described as an example of the prisoner's dilemma, but I think this reasoning is false - see post script.)
The bonus awarded to (and subsequently forfeited by) Stephen Hester, the Chief Executive of RBS, has been the cause of much debate. Unsurprisingly, many of the important factors behind the award of this bonus have been ignored in a crazy tabloid frenzy. In my opinion the executive bonus is necessary to protect shareholders.