Founder, FiveThirtyEight.com; Author of The Signal and The Noise
Saturday, Sept. 21, Noon
Nate Silver has been called a “spreadsheet psychic” and “number-crunching prodigy” by New York Magazine. Nate comes out of the world of baseball statistics, but during the 2008 presidential election primaries, he turned his sights and his amazing predictive abilities and forecasting models to the game of politics and current events—with incredible results.
He first gained national attention during the 2008 presidential election, when he correctly predicted the results of the primaries and the presidential winner in 49 states. Today, Nate runs the award-winning political website FiveThirtyEight.com, where he publishes a running forecast of current elections and hot-button issues. Now published in the New York Times, FiveThirtyEight.com has made Nate the public face of statistical analysis and political forecasting.
His new book is titled The Signal and The Noise: Why Most Predictions Fail — But Some Don’t. Data-based predictions underpin a growing sector of critical fields, from political polling and hurricane watches to the stock market and even the war on terror. That means it’s important to ask—what kind of predictions can we trust? What methods do the most reliable forecasters use? What sorts of things can be predicted—and what can’t? Nate takes us on a tour of modern prediction science, uncovering a surprising connection among humility, uncertainty and good results. It’s an essential read for anyone interested in how data can be used to understand the future.
Before he came to politics, Nate established his credentials as an analyst of baseball statistics. He developed a widely acclaimed system called PECOTA (Player Empirical Comparison and Optimization Test Algorithm), which predicts player performance, career development, and seasonal winners and losers. He is the author of a series of books on baseball statistics, which include Mind Game, Baseball Between the Numbers and It Ain’t Over ‘til It’s Over. Nate has written for ESPN.com, Sports Illustrated, Slate, New York Sun and the New York Times. His work has been reported in such publications as Newsweek, Huffington Post and Vanity Fair.
Nate Silver has been honored by a series of accolades, from TIME’s 100 Most Influential People of 2009 to Rolling Stone’s 100 Agents of Change. FiveThirtyEight.com won Best Political Coverage in the 2008 Weblog Awards.
Managing Partner, Baseball Prospectus
Economic Consultant, KPMG, Chicago
BA, Economics, University of Chicago
One of the World’s 100 Most Influential People, 2009, TIME
Blogger of the Year, The Week
Rolling Stone 100: Agents of Change, by Rolling Stone
FiveThirtyEight.com - for Best Political Coverage, 2008 Weblog Awards
Nate’s award winning political website is FiveThirtyEight.com. The name comes from the total number of votes in the electoral college. On the website, he crunches data, statistical studies, polls, election results, demographics, and voting patterns to publish a running forecast of a wide variety of current events, including the UK elections, the U.S. midterm elections, health care passage, immigration issues and more.