Changes & Announcing The Uncertainty Probability Science Statistics Class

Changes & Announcing The Uncertainty Probability Science Statistics Class

Change You Can Believe In

No joke. The blog has changed. It is now cleaner, more in line with the Substack mirror, some pages consolidated, making it easier to maintain, so I can do the class (see below).

The Week In Doom

I used to have a feature, running Saturdays (and when I also had a Sunday post on Summa Contra Gentiles; back then I rarely slept), called the Week In Doom. It was popular. There may still be interest in this, and I’m thinking of resurrecting it on Fridays. Which is always a day of lighter traffic.

Monday will be spoken for (see the next item), leaving Tuesday through Thursday for the usual articles. We’ll see how it works. As always, I welcome your tips.

Giving some sort of structure to the week makes it easier on me, and on readers, so that they will know what to skip. Most will want to skip the class.


As long-time readers know, I was canceled—among other thought crimes, I refused to DIE—and am no longer allowed to corrupt the youth in formal classrooms. So I will rot minds of all ages online.

At long last, the class will begin. For now, I’m entitling it “Uncertainty & Probability Theory: The Logic of Science”, because I will rely on my book and ET Jayne’s, with David Stove’s The Rationality of Induction. Among many others.

If it had to put it in a category, I’d say it will be a course on the philosophy of science, with probability and statistics and other math thrown in.

I thought a long time about how best to do this class, and came to the conclusion that I have no idea. But in these circuitous thoughts, I realized that I was violating the Briggs Rule of Getting It Done, which is that the only way to get things done is to get them done. He who succeeds is at least he who tries.

So starting next Monday, and for Mondays to come, excepting holy days and the like, posts will be about the class. These will be videos.

I’ll do my best to put in words what I’ll say in videos, because I like many of you am not a fan of videos. Plus I haven’t a clue how to produce or edit them. Yet there will always be more in videos, including working through any math, asides and rollicking jokes I forgot to write down.

The class will not be for everyone, of course. Lessons will be short. It will start easy enough, even trivially, but it won’t stay easy. To get through both books in bite-sized lectures will take several years. But the Summa series took over nine years, and many stuck with it. (That was one book in four thick volumes.)

Yet I have to do it. Because one of my other thought crimes was not wanting to teach probability and statistics in what I consider the wrong way, which is the way you’ll get everywhere else. Frequentism is false, as we proved the other day (blog, Substack). Why should we addle minds with what is false because that is what is expected? Answer: we should not.

I’ll litter the internet by putting the videos on various sites. Links will be in posts. Likely as not, some sites will eventually cancel them. So again we’ll see what works. I already have a strike on YouTube after idiot censors there did not like a talk I gave at an ordinary science conference. “Medical misinformation”. Sheesh.

This Post Sponsored By You

There will be no charge for any of the classes, nor of any posts. As usual.

I shall continue to rely on the patronage of generous readers. All donations and subscriptions will go to feeding me and making my work available to all. When I thank donors I say that the sign is true: I am wholly independent. (I’d take money from Big Oil and other environmental rapists, but they never offer it.)

Libraries are also free to use, but paid for by the graciousness and altruism of others. I will trust in you, and in the Lord, to provide. If any donations come in for the class, the first ones will go toward a hard drive to store videos locally. Though I might also blow it on cigars and rotgut red (Aldis charges $3.49 a bottle). My wee little laptop won’t hold but a few videos.

Subscribe or donate to support this site and its wholly independent host using credit card click here. Or use the paid subscription at Substack. Cash App: $WilliamMBriggs. For Zelle, use my email:, and please include yours so I know who to thank.


  1. Gwyneth

    I do look forward to the mind rot.

  2. JerryR

    Photo, when and where?

    Duke, 1956?

  3. Briggs


    Seems to be.

  4. I am ready to be reprogrammed. Let the deconstruction of frequentism begin.

  5. Robin

    Looking forward to your class. Ordered a hardcopy of Uncertainty last week, already have a copy of Jaynes.

    Thought your post last week “Probability is not frequentist…” was brilliant. It convinced me to buy your book.

  6. Hagfish Bagpipe

    New day, new look blog, new class, new life in Christ, new opportunities — wonderful! Spring is busting out all over. Title your class, “Hard-Boiled Statistics”, with Doctor Professor Reverend Sargent Machine-Gun Briggs. Start ’em off spit polishing boots, bouncing quarters off beds, picking up butts, that sort of stuff and when their brains are sufficiently sharpened open up rat-a-tat-tat with the heavy math and boom-boom caliber philosophy. The weak will wash out but the strong will go on to conquer the Statistical Heights, occupy all the Chairs of Chance, and usher in a Golden Age of Uncertainty. Sending you a vintage case of Rot Gut Red to further the Cause.

  7. Ignacio García Blanco

    Hey Briggs.

    Great announcement!

    I do have audio and video editing experience, if that helps.

    Glad to be of help.

  8. Briggs


    That is an infinitely better name.

  9. Dr K.A. Rodgers

    “I’ll do my best to put in words what I’ll say in videos, because I like many of you am not a fan of videos”. Good! What is left of my life is too short to spend time watching videos. Always skip news items that are solely presented in videos.

  10. JerryR

    Will the new course explain this?

    Mathematician Who Made Sense of the Universe’s Randomness Wins Math’s Top Prize:

    Michel Talagrand took home the 2024 Abel Prize for his work on stochastic systems, randomness and a proof of a physics reaction that many experts thought was unsolvable

    Is there such a thing as random, or is what we call random just a determined outcome of a zillion forces most of which no one knows?

  11. Brian (bulaoren)

    Dear Dr. Briggs
    I spent a part of yesterday (Easter Sunday) thinking of things for which I remain thankful. Among such are your missives; Thank you very much.
    When I first found your site, I was an ex-pat, living within my means, in Shanghai.
    Covid gave the CCP government a reason
    to send me home to the U.S.A. No, I was never infected
    Now I find myself living, very modestly, in Arkansas. Would that I could support you more tangibly.
    For now, and until my numbers come in, I can only wish you God’s speed… and again Thanks.

  12. Cary D Cotterman

    I read ’em all, even the mathy, graphy ones. I figure something will soak through my skull.

  13. Brian (bulaoren)

    …and while I’ve got your attention… One of the interesting benefits I thought I’d found about being in Arkansas was that a solar eclipse (April 8) would be passing overhead. Well, not so fast; The eclipse path has now moved quite far to the east.
    Astronomy is one of the first theories we humans codified, millenia ago.
    What happened, and what happened to “Trust the science”? How’d they botch this one…unless it’s an April fools joke…?
    A lot of people paid inflated prices to book hotels in the “path”, what for them? If this is a prank, who will pay for the consequences?

  14. cdquarles

    Next week’s solar eclipse will be the third that I have experienced. I had to drive to Tennessee to see totality in the last total one. The other two’s totality paths were a bit too far away (the 1970s Atlantic coast hugging one and this one). I must say that if you can get to see a total solar eclipse, it is an awesome sight given by God. I look forward to the stats class, SSgt. Briggs. That will also be awesome.

  15. @BoswellsCat

    Dear Matt, Happy Easter. I will definitely sign on to have my mind rotted. look forwRd to buying you some rotgut

  16. JerryR – “Is there such a thing as random, or is what we call random just a determined outcome of a zillion forces most of which no one knows?”

    Jerry – I don’t want to speak for Herr Briggs, but I feel confident in suggesting that he would say (both on his own and leaning on Prof. Jaynes) that “random” means “uhhhhh…we don’t know.” IOW, closer to your latter proposition, although I’m not sure what you mean by the use of the word “determined” in there.

    To believe in cause and effect is, at its essence, to believe that “random chance” is just a term for our ignorance about the cause of the effect that we’re witnessing at that moment, be it why you got malaria or why the coin landed on heads vice tails.

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