TED Talk: What do we really know about the spread of AIDS?

Posted to Statistics  |  Nathan Yau

In her TED talk, Emily Oster challenges our conception of AIDS and suggests other covariates that we need to look at (e.g. export volumes of coffee). Until we get out of the mindset that poverty and health care are the only causes/predictors of AIDS, we won’t be able to find the best way to fight the disease. Another great use of data.

I do have one small itch to scratch though. Emily had a line plot that shows export volumes and another line, on the same grid, of HIV infections, both over time. It reminds me of the plots that Al Gore uses with carbon dioxide levels and temperature. Anyways, using the plot, Emily suggests a very tight relationship between export volumes and HIV infections. Isn’t export volume pretty tightly knit to poverty? I don’t know. She’s the economist, so she would know (A LOT) better than me. I guess I just wish she talked a little bit about the new and different data she has that compels us to change our conceptions.


The Most Unisex Names in US History

Moving on from the most trendy names in US history, let’s look at the most unisex ones. Some names have …

The Best Data Visualization Projects of 2011

I almost didn’t make a best-of list this year, but as I clicked through the year’s post, it was hard …

How You Will Die

So far we’ve seen when you will die and how other people tend to die. Now let’s put the two together to see how and when you will die, given your sex, race, and age.

Most popular porn searches, by state

We’ve seen that we can learn from what people search for, through the eyes of Google suggestions: state stereotypes, national …