Monday, January 14, 2008

The Paradox of Statistical Research

The paradox of importance:

If there is a hurry to solve some important problem, then we'll use the quickest methods at hand--we don't have the time to waste on developing fancy methods. But if it's something that nobody cares about . . . well, then we can put in the effort to really do a good job!

In the long run, these new methods we develop can become the quick methods for the important problems of the future, but meanwhile we often see cutting-edge applied statistical research on problems that are of little urgency.

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