Monday, June 02, 2008

I Hate Math

There are two very good (according to me) climate blogs at The Blackboard and Prometheus.  The main reason that I love them so much is that they are "believers" in Global Warming, but they aren't alarmist about it.

They approach the science as, you know, a science and attempt to look at and understand the data.  The other reason I probably like them is because the activist portion of the blogosphere seems to hate them because - well they look at and try to understand the data.

The downside of all of this is I don't get the math.  Not in the least.  I would like to understand, but all of that statistics just loses me.

The pale green solid and dashed curves represent the OLS (ordinary least squares) fit to monthly data from Jan 1975-April 2008, with dashed lines representing 2-sigma deviations for residuals. These bands should encompass approximately 95% of “weather”. The blue represents the 2C/century trend projected by the IPCC; 2sigma uncertainty for “weather” are taken from the OLS fit for 1975-2008 and applied to the IPCC projection. Small ‘+’ and ‘x’ indicate monthly measurements of GMST. The green circle are the 12 month Jan-December averages for each year. The red-outlined orange circle is the current annual average based on data for 2008.

Does that mean we are getting warmer, colder, staying the same or being invaded by aliens?

If anyone would be willing to translate all of the recent talk about falsifying IPCC reports or point me to a statistics for dummies site you would win my undying gratitude and admiration.

And what a treat that would be!

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1 comment:

  1. Right now, if you look at the graph you describe we can't tell anything.

    That graph has lots of stuff on it. If the IPCC is right about the 2C/century estimate, the monthy data will, over time, stay inside the light blue IPCC dashed lines (95% of the time.)

    If the IPCC is wrong, but the trend stays the say as before, the data will stay inside the dashed lines for the 1975-now projection.

    If the data start to fall below the dashed lines.....

    Feel free to ask questions at the blog in comments. If you have questions, others also do, and I can answer them there where the graphs display.