Sex with 21 Women Lowers Risk of Prostate Cancer I saw this story reported today and it stuck me as particularly poor science. As click bait, it is irresistible. It has it all: sex, cancer, an excuse to use the word ejaculation and the conclusion that promiscuity is better than monogamy, unless you're gay. The study found that men who had slept with more than 20 women had significantly lower instances of prostate cancer than those men who slept with less. I have no reason to doubt the numbers. But many reports of the findings illustrate the classic fallacy of confusing correlation with causation. I have noticed that on on days when lots of people carry umbrellas, the buses are much fuller. But it would be wrong to jump to the conclusion that umbrellas cause busses to fill up, and that increasing the number of umbrellas on our streets would improve bus company revenues. It is similarly incorrect to conclude that the full busses cause people to carry umbrellas. Ther
The recent Irish Government report Delivering the Smart Economy provided me with a number of great examples for a class I like to give sometimes about how poorly (often deliberately) designed charts and graphs can be misleading without actually lying. Now I can replace some of my contrived examples with real life ones. The first example Business Expenditure on R&D is unusual. It shows business expenditure on R&D by indigenous and foreign companies over the years. Bizarrely the graph codes the information with bars of three rather colours than two. The far too subtle drop shadow above the bars is meant to point out that the bars are overlaid on top of each other. At a glance it would appear as though the foreign investment is not significantly greater than the indigenous because the total areas of of their respective colours is comparable. A more honest designer would simply have used two colours and stacked them one atop the other. This (the designer might retort) wou
Irish Free State Registered Trade Mark No. 1 The first registered trade mark in force in Ireland was the UK's Trade Mark No. 1 for Bass Ale. However, following independence in 1922 Ireland put in place its own intellectual property regime. The Industrial and Commercial Property (Protection) Act 1927 established a trade mark register for Ireland. Deanta I nEireann is Irish for Made in Ireland . A trade mark that merely designates the country of origin would not be registrable today.