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JoshuaZ comments on Bayes' Theorem Illustrated (My Way) - Less Wrong

126 Post author: komponisto 03 June 2010 04:40AM

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Comment author: JoshuaZ 03 June 2010 12:54:46PM 1 point [-]

Actually, a Bayesian and a frequentist can have different answers to this problem. It resides on what distribution you are using to decide to tell me that a boy is born on Tuesday. The standard answer ignores this issue.

Comment author: DanielVarga 03 June 2010 02:20:06PM 2 points [-]

I don't know much about the philosophy of statistical inference. But I am dead sure that if the Bayesian and the frequentist really do ask the same question, then they will get the same answer. There is a nice spoiler post where the possible interpretations of the puzzle are clearly spelled out. Do you suggest that some of these interpretations are preferred by either a frequentist or a Bayesian?

Comment author: JoshuaZ 03 June 2010 02:32:30PM 1 point [-]

Well, essentially, focusing on that coin flip is a very Bayesian thing to do. A frequentist approach to this problem won't imagine the prior coin flip often. See Eliezer's post about this here. I agree however that a careful frequentist should get the same results as a Bayesian if they are careful in this situation. What results one gets depends in part on what exactly one means by a frequentist here.