The Improbability Principle: Why incredibly unlikely things keep happening by David Hand (Bantam Press, $39.89)
Reviewed by C P Howe
Who hasn’t heard a relative, a colleague, or a journalist comment on an unlikely event? Perhaps someone wins the lottery two weeks in a row. Or the financial markets crash twice in ten years. Or – in the case of my parents – they see a car with their initials on the number plate. Isn’t that incredible! What a co-incidence!
These are the kinds of things David Hand takes a close look at in The Improbability Principle and he does a great job for the general reader. Although some of the maths will be a stretch – and some almost inaccessible – to non-mathematicians, it doesn’t distract from the story he’s telling.
It turns out that his Improbability Principle is ‘not a single equation, but a collection of strands’ and Hand walks us through them – he calls them ‘laws’ – together with other material about probability and chance.
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