Probability in plain words (review of Allen and Pardo, part 5)

As we mentioned in a previous post (part 4 of our review of Allen and Pardo’s relative plausibility paper), “plausibility”, however defined, is just another word for “probability.” Yet, this notion of plausibility, though simple and intuitive, is a crude concept at best–not because it eschews the use of numerical values; but rather because it expresses only one shade of the probability continuum. It turns out there are many different words and phrases to describe many different levels of probability. [See chart below. More details are available here (via Wikipedia) and here too (via the CIA Library).] The main point (the one most relevant to the legal proof literature) is that we don’t always need to express our probabilities (or subjective degrees of belief) using numerical values. Words can work just fine, but we will need more than one word.

Image result for Words of estimative probability

About F. E. Guerra-Pujol

When I’m not blogging, I am a business law professor at the University of Central Florida.
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2 Responses to Probability in plain words (review of Allen and Pardo, part 5)

  1. Kathy H says:

    Have you ever watched the World Poker Tour. Before the flop, a pair of Aces is about 80% to 20% to a 7-8 of different suits. Until the flop comes 4-5-6. After the flop anything can happen!!!

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