Here is where we introduce Dave, the Forecasting Pig (Reuters 31 Jan 2008). Dave lives in Ohio. He opines (or oswines) on US economic status, and is a key statistical tool used by the Ohio treasurer's office. Dave decides between a trough of sugar or one of sawdust to gauge the economy's future. Sadly, better methodologies are available (ask Carrie Smith Cox).
Tutorial take home message:
The ingredients of good statistics:
- A decent, honest, well described set of data
- Proper definition of terms, specified in advance
- A clear, well framed and unambiguous question (or problem), specified in advance
- A plan for examining those data, specified in advance
- Honest intent
Have you had the measles?
If so, how many?
See here for Collated Micro-Statistics Tutorials