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Everybody Lies: Big Data, New Data, and What the Internet Can Tell Us about Who We Really Are Hardcover – Illustrated, 9 May 2017
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- Publisher : Dey Street Books; Illustrated edition (9 May 2017)
- Language : English
- Hardcover : 352 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0062390856
- ISBN-13 : 978-0062390851
- Dimensions : 3.3 x 14.48 x 21.08 cm
- Best Sellers Rank: 56,726 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
"A whirlwind tour of the modern human psyche using search data as its guide. . . . The empirical findings in Everybody Lies are so intriguing that the book would be a page-turner even if it were structured as a mere laundry list."--The Economist
"Everybody Lies is an astoundingly clever and mischievous exploration of what big data tells us about everyday life. Seth Stephens-Davidowitz is as good a data storyteller as I have ever met."--Steven Levitt, co-author, Freakonomics
"Stephens-Davidowitz, a former data scientist at Google, has spent the last four years poring over Internet search data . . . What he found is that Internet search data might be the Holy Grail when it comes to understanding the true nature of humanity."--New York Post
"Everybody Lies is a spirited and enthralling examination of the data of our lives. Drawing on a wide variety of revelatory sources, Seth Stephens-Davidowitz will make you cringe, chuckle, and wince at the people you thought we were."--Christian Rudder, author of Dataclysm
"A tour de force--a well-written and entertaining journey through big data that, along the way, happens to put forward an important new perspective on human behavior itself. If you want to understand what's going on in the world, or even with your friends, this is one book you should read cover to cover."--Peter Orszag, Managing Director, Lazard and former Director of the Office of Management and Budget
"Freakonomics on steroids--this book shows how big data can give us surprising new answers to important and interesting questions. Seth Stephens-Davidowitz brings data analysis alive in a crisp, witty manner, providing a terrific introduction to how big data is shaping social science."--Raj Chetty, Professor of Economics at Stanford University
"Brimming with intriguing anecdotes and counterintuitive facts, Stephens-Davidowitz does his level best to help usher in a new age of human understanding, one digital data point at a time."--Fortune, Best New Business Books
"Everybody Lies relies on big data to rip the veneer of what we like to think of as our civilized selves. A book that is fascinating, shocking, sometimes horrifying, but above all, revealing."--Tim Wu, author of The Attention Merchants
"Move over Freakonomics. Move over Moneyball. This brilliant book is the best demonstration yet of how big data plus cleverness can illuminate and then move the world. Read it and you'll see life in a new way."--Lawrence Summers, President Emeritus and Charles W. Eliot University Professor of Harvard University
From the Back Cover
How much sex are people really having?
How many Americans are actually racist?
Is America experiencing a hidden back-alley abortion crisis?
Can you game the stock market?
Does violent entertainment increase the rate of violent crime?
Do parents treat sons differently from daughters?
How many people actually read the books they buy?
In this groundbreaking work, Seth Stephens-Davidowitz, a Harvard-trained economist, former Google data scientist, and New York Times writer, argues that much of what we thought about people has been dead wrong. The reason? People lie, to friends, lovers, doctors, surveys--and themselves.
However, we no longer need to rely on what people tell us. New data from the internet--the traces of information that billions of people leave on Google, social media, dating, and even pornography sites--finally reveals the truth. By analyzing this digital goldmine, we can now learn what people really think, what they really want, and what they really do. Sometimes the new data will make you laugh out loud. Sometimes the new data will shock you. Sometimes the new data will deeply disturb you. But, always, this new data will make you think.
Everybody Lies combines the informed analysis of Nate Silver's The Signal and the Noise, the storytelling of Malcolm Gladwell's Outliers, and the wit and fun of Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner's Freakonomics in a book that will change the way you view the world. There is almost no limit to what can be learned about human nature from Big Data--provided, that is, you ask the right questions.
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Top reviews from Australia
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Seth explains data science and throws many fascinating insights from his studies at us. What he doesn't go through is the painstaking work he went through in collecting, organising, and exploring the data. There are no highly technical concepts for readers to wade through. But what if you want to start working with data yourself? My personal recommendation would be free data visualisation software called Tableau, which literally takes in large excel and CSV files, then spits out interactive insights through your manipulation (which doesn't take so long to learn). It allows everyone to engage in data analysis, and uncover their own insights about areas they are interested in.
The book is clear and entertaining for lay readers with a general interest in social sciences. It would also be good on the reading lists for undergraduate courses in social research methods.
Top reviews from other countries
So this book is full of interest for those believing - or who are open to being persuaded - that the march of big data into the social sciences is continuing. And on the flip side, it shows such techniques are being used in the corporate and political world as well, to sell us more stuff or get us to donate more; primarily by using these big data techniques to leverage natural and quick feedback experiments to find out "what works". Although it also does show why it won't work for the stock market, as part of an overall section showing the limitations of these techniques.
Highly recommended for those interested in the uses, actual and potential (and abuses), of big data in the modern world, particularly using internet searches as the dataset.
How useful is all this data? Well, it can’t yet be used to predict election results, but this may be possible in the future. In terms of medicine, the potential is enormous, particularly in the field of public health.
I really enjoyed this book and was pleased to find that the author’s columns for the New York Times are free to access, so even if you don’t read the book, you can see what he’s all about.
Disturbing as well, but useful to understand how idiots get elected, and how people learn to be thieves and commit tax fraud, for instance and what makes us happy and sad.
On the downside, after reading 50-100 pages you sort of get the idea the author trying to convey, after which it becomes highly repetitive and also since the author US based, 9/10 things are about things in america.