95% Confidence Interval

95% Confidence Interval

Here’s a fun game! Grab a piece of paper and answer these 20 questions as a range with 95% confidence interval.

The questions are crazy out there and will require guessing on most. BUT, again, you’ve gotta guess so that you’re 95% confident that the answer is within your defined range. That means when you’re done you should have exactly 19 of 20 correct.

So if the question was something like:

How many states are there in the United States?

*Note: Pretend you don’t already know the answer.

You’d have to put a range as your answer. so let’s say you said…

12, 60

This means you’re 95% confident there are no fewer than 12 states, and no more than 60.

When it comes time to score, and you see the answer 50… good job! you got that question right! Don’t worry: the answers will be much more ridiculously difficult.

Once you take the test, post your actual % correct confidence interval in the comments.



I suffer from sleep maintenance insomnia. Or so I am lead to believe by my research into sleep habits. After many years of not realizing I had an issue, I came across a great interview in one of my favorite podcasts, The Drive with Peter Attia, with Matthew Walker sleep guru and writer of the book “Why We Sleep”.

He described in a very straight-forward means that sleep is way more important for our health and well-being than is communicated and the 6 hours or so that’s standard in the American lifestyle is far from sufficient.

How to fix it? Not likely medication but behavioral modifications. I started down this path, but I haven’t been successful enough.

Things I’ve explored:

  1. Darkening the room
  2. Glycine before bed
  3. Sugar and Caffeine reduction
  4. No reading or movies in bed
  5. Meditation
  6. Getting up instead of waiting for sleep

But still it’s been a little rough. However we can’t fix what we can’t measure. So for the past year I’ve been tracking my sleep with a fitbit. Here’s the data so far for 2020:

Not enough sleep

Our Y axis is hours of sleep. The X axis are dates. The blue line is the amount of sleep I got each night in hours. The orange is the total time I was in bed. So, if we look at that very first data point, I had just over 8 hours in bed, and I slept for about 6.5 of those hours.

The amount of time in bed is called your sleep opportunity. Having a sleep efficiency of 85% is pretty normal for someone around age 40. Note: It’s highly age dependent, as you get older your sleep efficiency drops.

Last week I made a major step forward in my quest for sleep – I contacted a sleep doctor. I have my first appointment on Wednesday.

I’m pretty excited. Right now my data shows an average of 6.2 hours of sleep for me per night with an abysmal standard deviation of 2.2 hours. I’m hoping I can adopt new habits that will bring me above 7 hours of sleep per night average. We’ll see how it goes!

Board Games

#1. Pandemic Legacy

Patrick. I’m sorry. We haven’t started Legacy yet. Jen and I don’t want to dive in as a two person game because everything we hear says it’s best with four players. So… we wait until our bizarre schedule with J.Atlas and the schedule of our normal gaming friends who also have an infant align miraculously. Or… we just play the two of us. I genuinely don’t know the best choice. What do you guys think?

#2. 7 Wonders Duel

As we parade abouts the waiting place on Legacy, we have purchased a few new games. 7 Wonders Duel is a masterpiece of a two person game. It’s also short. It takes about 30 minutes to play through a game, which makes it perfect for us to squeeze in a game in the precious 60 minutes that we have between J.Atlas’ bedtime and when we collapse in exhaustion. The game has wonderful replay qualities. Each game is excitingly close and enveloping. I can’t recommend this game enough as a two person game.

#3. Between two Cities

A rather unique 2-7 person board game which can be finished in about 30 minutes time. I’m on the fence with this game. It’s play mechanisms are clever, but I don’t feel like there’s a ton of reply opportunity. There’s a maximum number of points attainable so it feels like there’s a roof to success. You can read this mediocre review as: “I’m not that good at the game and have a hard time admitting it.”

#4. Splendor

This one arrived this week. It’s rated exceptionally highly as a family game and it’s strangely addictive. When I was reading about the method of play it sounded pretty boring, but after trying a game, and a second game, and a third game…. I realized it’s not that it’s boring it’s just simple. And as a simple game, it’s easy to keep playing and playing and playing. I think there’s depth to its strategy, but having only played a handful of games I haven’t yet uncovered its exciting nuances

Other games I’m interested in, but haven’t purchased:

Tzolk’in: The Mayan Calendar
This game has a system of gears which move resources. First reaction: Gimmick? Alas, from reviews I read it’s not at all gimmicky. The problem with the game is its ~90min play time which doesn’t really work with Jen and my schedule right now

T.I.M.E. Stories (another one-time-through game, like Legacy)
I LOVE THE IDEA OF LEGACY STYLE GAMES – except, this one is rated best with three people. And right now scheduling guests for any real period of time becomes too challenging.

Blood Rage
I was searching for games with unique boards. Most of the games we’ve been playing lately are card hoarding games (Dominion, Duel, Splendor). So I am eager for something different. Blood rage has miniatures and looks far from anything else we’ve tried. But… it’s another 60-90min game. That makes it tough.

Anyone have other recommendations? I’ve had my eye on Race for the Galaxy for awhile now too. I know that’s a winner courtesy of Tom & Mykal. Any others?

Trying to measure inconvenience

I have a question: What two places in the United States are the most inconvenient to travel between?

Saunter down this path with me for a minute.

First, let’s set some constraints. We’re talking transport via road. Start and End destinations must be on a road. We don’t have helicopters, boats, or jetpacks. We also don’t have ferries  – we’re going to assume you must travel on your own time schedule – you can’t depend on a ferry or a train because one might not be there when you need to travel. Lastly, we’re going to travel via GoogleMaps; this makes examples testable.

Let’s define inconvenience as distance of travel required divided by the distance it would take if you could go direct.

How far apart the locations are in driven mile / How far the two destinations are apart as the crow flies

Here are some of the ones I have found so far:

Grand Canyon
210 : 10.18
Inconvenience = 20.63

Long Island
191 : 8.78
Inconvenience = 21.75

Chesapeake Bay
131 : 5.46
Inconvenience = 23.99

Near Seattle
218 : 3.95
Inconvenience = 55.19

So… it’s pretty obvious by targeting Ferry routes you can nail inefficient locations. I’d be interested to see if there’s a way to do this with the inclusions of Ferries.

ASIDE – don’t you think the inconvenience equation should have some sort of scale? Doesn’t it seem less impressive at greater distances? If I’m 1 mile from where I need to go, but it takes me 10 miles of travel, that seems more impressive than if I’m 10 miles apart and it takes me 100 miles to get from A to B… I’m not sure. I think there should be some sort of logarithmic scaling, but I’m not sure the best way to do this.

As for targetting locations on the map, this is something I imagine Patrick being really good at.
Any recommendations for even more inconvenient destinations Patrick?