Game theory in the popular press.


Game theory and economics in the news

January 31, 2005 Newsweek, Does your iPod play favorites?
People see patterns even when none exist, such as in IPod's randomization feature. This presents a behavioral challenge for mixed strategies. (by Steven Levy)
September 8, 2004 Financial Times, Game theory helps insurers to judge the risks of terror
A model offers game theoretic predictions of the likelihood of terrorist attacks.
February 24, 2004 NPR, The Not So Random Coin Toss
Coins are more likely to end up facing the same way they started the coin toss, calling into question their use as a method of resolving disputes.
February 1, 2004 New York Times, Incremental analysis, with two yards to go
David Romer's analysis suggesting that football teams punt too often is considered by the New England Patriots. (by David Loenhardt)
February 1, 2004 Boston Globe, Pigskin Pythagoras
Chronicles one man's attempt to bring sanity and careful calculations into football strategy. (by Jascha Hoffman)
January 20, 2004 New York Times, Subconsciously, athletes may play like statisticians
Athletes appear subconsciously to apply Bayes' Rule and to play equilibrium mixed strategies
December 19, 2003 Slate, Number Crunching: Why doesn't football have a Bill James?
A more reasoned approach to football strategy determines the value of each field position to calculate optimal play calling. (by Josh Levin)
November 1, 2003 Business 2.0, The card sharks from Silicon Valley
The new champions of poker include those skilled in probability and game theory (by Paul Keegan)
October 16, 2003 IT Web, Warmed-over Bayesian ham and spam
Bayesian probabilistic spam filters work better than static checking against keywords or address lists.
October 1, 2003 eWeek, Zeroing in on site and security flaws
Computer system security is not simply a probabilistic exercise since hackers are strategic actors. Game theoretic thought is required.
January 23, 2003 Los Angeles Times, Do the math: Rooting out terrorists is tricky business
Bayes' Rule indicates that even if we can predict a future terrorist with great accuracy, we will usually be wrong.
January 5, 2003 ABC News, Future world: privacy, terrorists, and science fiction
An application of Bayes' Rule indicating that even if we can predict a future terrorist with great accuracy, we will usually be wrong. (by John Allen Paulos)
December 1, 2002, Will filters kill spam?
Describes a Bayesian approach to filtering spam from users' mailboxes.
October 31, 2002 ESPN, Fourth-down analysis met with skepticism
Paul Romer's findins that teams should punt less often given the odds criticized by professional coaches.
August 19, 2002 SF Gate, Cal prof says teams should go for it more often on fourth down
American football coaches should punt less often, given the odds.
April 8, 2002 Wall Street Journal, Can the risk of terrorism be calculated by insurers?
Understanding the mixed strategy game of target selection and defense helps quantify risk.
January 4, 2002 New Scientist, Euro coin accused of unfair flipping
Lack of uniformity across European Euro coins leads to different odds of heads and tails in different countries. (by Debora MacKenzie)
April 28, 2001 New York Times, Adding art to the rigor of statistical science
Bayesian probability analysis gains popularity in uses ranging from effectiveness of medical procedures to email screeners.
March 22, 2001 The Economist, Son of paperclip
Microsoft applies Bayesian probability analysis to decide when a user needs help or advice.
February 1, 2001 ABC News, Coins and Confused Eyewitnesses
Bayes Rule suggests that it is likely that an eye witness picks the wrong person.
September 28, 2000 Economist, In praise of Bayes
Discusses the rise of Bayesian statistics and reasons for the existence of detractors.
October 28, 1996 Los Angeles Times, Improbable inspiration
Bayesian networks underly many of Microsoft's technologies, from diagnosing problems to knowing when a user needs advice.
July 6, 1996, More sex is safer sex
Justifies promiscuity and subsidization of condoms by examining probability, imperfect signals, and externalities
March 29, 1996 Financial Times, On the trail of a good bet
Describes people's attitudes towards very unlikely risks, and the implications for finance, insurance, and government policy. (by John Kay)