Keep your redshirt on: a Bayesian exploration

Written by Matthew Barsalou on . Posted in Culture

The idea of red-shirted characters being frequently killed in Star Trek: The Original Series has become a pop culture cliché. But is wearing a redshirt in Star Trek as hazardous as it is thought to be? To find out, casualty figures for the Starship Enterprise were compiled using the casualty list provided by Memory Alpha.

 

A scientific evaluation of Charles Dickens

Written by Mikhail Simkin on . Posted in Culture

Previously I discussed1 my experiment that tested whether people can tell the masterpieces of abstract art from anyone’s doodles. People could hardly see any difference. But is this peculiar to modern art? Alas, it is not. Here, I show that the same thing happens with classical literature.

Statistics against irritations: a response to Dickens’s apologists or If high readership is the test of good writing, then 50 Shades of Grey is a work of genius…

Written by Mikhail Simkin on . Posted in Culture

Charles Dickens
Recently I discussed  my article1 which reported the results of the test where the takers had to tell the prose of Charles Dickens from the prose of Edward Bulwer-Lytton. The former is a required reading in school, and the latter has a bad writing contest named after him. Nevertheless, the test-takers performed on the level of random guessing. This research got some media attention.
 
While Mark Howarth’s article2 in The Daily Mail is rational, the article3 by Alison Flood in The Guardian is emotional. She even bills her talking points as “irritations:”
 

We use cookies to understand how you use our site and to improve your experience. By continuing to use our site, you accept our use of cookies and Terms of Use.