507: Experimentation

Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
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I understand large sample sizes are key to a low standard error of the mean, but the entire sophomore class?
Title text: I understand large sample sizes are key to a low standard error of the mean, but the entire sophomore class?


College (Undergraduate University, for international readers) is a time to find yourself, so the aphorism goes. This comic takes the joke a bit too far (a favorite on xkcd) with "experimenting with your sexuality". Usually, it is taken to mean the person is curious, and will have one night stands to test this, but not Megan. No, she was indeed experimenting, and experiments follow the Scientific method: hypothesize, experiment, draw conclusions, repeat. And statistically speaking, a large sample group decreases the error bounds on the results. A Control group in this context would be males. The title text implies that Megan "experimented" with the entire sophomore class (both males and females) before dating Cueball.


[A young male and female are holding hands, and the female is pointing off to the side.]

Female: Oh, hey, it's twelve of the dudes from control group B!

I'm cool with her past lesbian experimentation, but I wish she hadn't insisted the experiments be scientifically rigorous.

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A proper sample for Megan is at least three (or four) groups: definite lesbians; other curious girls; hetero males; possibly a randomised group (trans, bi, intersex, fetishes and kinks: depending on source) and an ordinary mixed-sex control, all of which could include the entirety of her year level. The other students might have felt uncomfortable with her empirically recording the data, though (filming and surveys). ‎ (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

I like the implication that perhaps years after college, her test groups still hang out together. If well chosen, the "dudes from control group B" would have nothing in common except Megan, but this has been enough of a bonding experience. 08:08, 7 April 2015 (UTC)