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Represented & Improved…a bit
While on the train to NYC this morning (actually a little more than a year ago), two recent events coalesced into the above question.
First was the news story seen on yesterday’s AdAge website and one we talked about on MeasurementMedia.com – “web media measurement doesn’t work!”. It echoed our small experiences over the past five years or so that the traffic reported visiting our websites according to Google and our own server-based counting methods differed often by an order of magnitude – or more!
Then, secondly, there was the interesting experience that I had while visiting the SMX conference & Expo just a week ago at the Javits Center in NYC. I had listened to a panel chat on the future of Google by noted experts – none from the Big G. Several were selling copies of their “Google books”. So, I got in line to buy one and get it signed by an author.
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2nd Time Around
Wow! That’s a question much like:”How long is a piece of string?”
The quick answer is, “It all depends!”
The detailed answer lies in the results of what is being measured, by what measurement device(s), under what conditions and the skills or experience of the person using the device(s).
One phenomenological way to determine the error is to make a series of them (observations) and determine the “scatter” or variability in the results. If you have no variations, then the measurement device(s) are most likely not sensitive enough.
That assumes, of course, that the measurement is not a foolish, tautological or trivial one like: “How many items constitute a pair?”
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Also 2nd Time Around
This is a practical answer for those who are unsure about the size of their foot and consequently their show size. It is aimed at ladies shoes
Visit: ladieshoes.wordpress.com/2010/09/19/how-to-measure-your-foot-or-rate/ to find out!
Second Time’s The Charm
Found this rather heavy, scientific blog post at: memming.wordpress.com/2010/07/18/an-engineering-introduction-to-measure-theory/. The paragraph below includes a link to the Wikipedia article on “Measure Theory”. If you are “into” that sort of thing, here’s a quotes from the opening paragraph:
A measure is a convenient mathematical object (function) that can represent the positions of strawberries in a field, distribution of water in the ocean, or probabilities of winning over the lottery numbers — the measure counts the number of strawberries in a given area, reports the amount of water in a certain sea, and evaluates the probability of a lottery ticket to win. This abstract unifying framework enables one to rigorously ‘measure’ quantities over a space, and also enable integration. It also allows elegant notation for probability theory. Here we briefly describe key ideas of measure theory without proof.
How do we?
(This is what I call a “seed question” – we actually know the answer, but wonder if every reader of this blog does, too. Probably not)
Have you ever thought about it?
Anyone out there in “Webland” know?
(I really don’t expect an answer anytime soon, but it can hang in the breeze for a few days or months before we answer it.)
The tools of measurement are threefold:
- practices and
Devices do the actual work in quantifying a measurand and providing a display or signal for recording the result. But this requires a suitably applied measurement device and that is dictated by the practices in use of such a device. Read the rest of this entry »