Data, Perception and Ignorance

We live in an era of data and information. Right from deciding what to read, what to wear, which restaurant to go to, which city to visit, whom to vote for, we consider ourselves rational human beings who rely on data to make all our decisions. How much of this data is based on facts rather than opinions and/or perceptions? This review looks at two websites, Gapminder and Our World in Data, which attempt to provide reliable global statistics and promote a fact-based worldview. While Our World in Data is targeted towards users who have a basic understanding of economics and statistics, Gapminder requires little or no background of either. Examples of my usage of these websites in the classroom are described below.

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