New Open Access Text On Probability & Decision
Jonathan Weisberg, associate professor of philosophy at the University of Toronto, has created a new open-access book on probability and decision-making. It has the brilliant title Odds & Ends.
The book, which requires neither a background in deductive logic nor familiarity with other formal methods, and makes generous use of visual aids, is intended for introductory philosophy courses on probability and inductive logic. It is free and also open-source, which means instructors can alter it to suit their teaching needs, and is available as a PDF and in HTML.
Professor Weisberg says:
By the end of the course, students with little formal background have a bevy of tools for thinking about uncertainty. They can understand much more of the statistical and scientific discourse they encounter. And hopefully they have a greater appreciation for the value of formal methods. Students who already have strong formal tools and skills will, I hope, better understand their limitations. I want them to understand why these tools leave big questions open—not just philosophically, but also in very pressing, practical ways.
He credits Brian Skyrms’ Choice & Chance, Ian Hacking’s An Introduction to Probability and Inductive Logic, and Kieran Healy’s book Data Visualization: A Practical Introduction as influences for his book.
You can access Odds & Ends here.