Objectivism Online Forum

# How old are you?

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## How old are you?   709 members have voted

1. ### 1. How old are you?

• 18 or below
123
• 19 - 25
276
• 26 - 30
74
• 31 - 35
51
• 36 - 40
30
• 41 - 45
31
• 46 - 50
16
• 51 - 55
11
• 56 - 60
9
• over 60
12

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Some one calculate the standard deviation of the poll. I have forgotten how to do it.

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Well, for one, the options were in age ranges rather than specific ages. Secondly, the ranges weren't equal (one could potentially be 18, another is 6, others are 4, and the last could be 50 for all I know). So a straight-forward mean and standard deviation is subject to what particular value one chooses for each particular age range.

For example, one could pick the median value of each range and use that for the analysis. This would mean that (setting the limits of people likely to be on the internet and in this forum at 14 and 80) the mean is 31/183*(16) + 87/183*(22) + 18/183*(28) + 20/183*(33) + 9/183*(38) + 8/183*(43) + 2/183*(48) + 4/183*(53) + 2/183*(58) + 2/183*(70) = 26.36 (where the median of the age ranges above are in parenthesis and being multiplied by their respective degree of occurence), with a standard deviation of 10.17. One could also drop the tail ends, since those ranges are open-ended.

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Thanks alot for the stats lesson. That makes alot of sense.

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• 2 weeks later...

Using the most recent numbers and assuming 65 as the average age for the highest age category and 14 for the lowest, the distribution has a mean of 25.9, a St Dev of 10.55, and a variance of 111.6. Since a Poisson distribution is one that has a roughly equal variance and mean, I guess we don't have one of those -though it sure looks like one... Hmmmm....

Tons of people between 19-35. If there were fewer hits in that age category, it might fit.

Anyway, as Felipe said, we don't have the true numbers.

Edited by Liriodendron Tulipifera

I meant 19-25.

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I meant 19-25.

I smell a software or data bug.
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• 2 weeks later...
I smell a software or data bug.
Why David? The distribution seems to pretty close to what I would have guessed of the folks who post here.
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It doesn't look like a bell curve to me!Â  Far from it: looks like a Poisson distribution.

My initial post was more of a joke than trying to find which exact distribution matched the data. Take it easy.

Edited by ASelameab
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HAHAHAHAHA!

And I thought I was a minority here. I must have been when I started posting here at the age of 12. Back then I remember it was so much fun discussing with "Dagny" and "AshRyan" my conflifts over Faith vs. Reason. It's been a tough crowd, but I really do love you guys.

-J

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Using the most recent numbers and assuming 65 as the average age for the highest age category and 14 for the lowest, the distribution has a mean of 25.9, a St Dev of 10.55, and a variance of 111.6.Â  Since a Poisson distribution is one that has a roughly equal variance and mean, I guess we don't have one of those -though it sure looks like one...Â  Hmmmm....

Tons of people between 19-35.Â  If there were fewer hits in that age category, it might fit.

Anyway, as Felipe said, we don't have the true numbers.

Ok - set up a poll, offered to a high school on a regular class day, and accept one polling vote per regular occupant for that day. Do you really think it's going to fit a bell curve across the whole range of human ages?? Check your premises - if the vote is accurate, all it's saying is that the ages of those who post here are predominantly young people. You would find a similar "skew" in many different cases. The statistical universe of this (and many other) polls is not "all people everywhere" or even some representative sampling of such.

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Why David? The distribution seems to pretty close to what I would have guessed of the folks who post here.

I meant the fact that the same post was constantly being re-listed as a "new post" over a period of days.

Edited by softwareNerd
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...the fact that the same post was constantly being re-listed as a "new post" over a period of days. .
It comes up as "new" every time someone votes. There is a way to change it for all Polls. The software has a configuration option, along the lines: "a vote without any post should bump the topic back to 'new': Yes/No". Right now, it is set to "Yes".
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I think it's great that a lot of the Objectivists are so young.

It's a sign of hope.

Edited by softwareNerd
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• 2 weeks later...
I think it's great that a lot of the Objectivists are so young. It's a sign of hope.

I hope you are right, Felix. But statistics like this often have many possible interpretations. Some others might be:

1. Perhaps older Objectivists are less likely to participate in this forum. Perhaps because they are less comfortable with computers.

2. Perhaps older Objectivists are less likely to respond to a Poll. Or they do not want to reveal their age.

3. Perhaps some of the responders are lying about their age to appear younger.

4. Perhaps Objectivism is a phenomena of youth; and older people usually outgrow it.

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Perhaps also: Some think that age isn't relevant in philosophy, and so such people don't see any point in weighing in on this. I'm 49, but I'll pit my knowledge and enthusiasm against any 20 something. ;-)

I must be one of the two in my age group. I'm pretty sure I voted, but then, maybe the old brain cells containing that memory croaked. ;-)

Ribbit.

Mark Peters

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I am nineteen years old.

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1. Perhaps older Objectivists are less likely to participate in this forum. Perhaps because they are less comfortable with computers.

That's true.

2. Perhaps older Objectivists are less likely to respond to a Poll. Or they do not want to reveal their age.

3. Perhaps some of the responders are lying about their age to appear younger.

Hmmm. I don't know. It's anonymous. And Objectivists don't fake reality.

But it could be that this 'how old are you'-poll thing is more attractive to young people.

4. Perhaps Objectivism is a phenomena of youth; and older people usually outgrow it.

This implies that Objectivism is wrong and that if you grow older you learn something better.

Or it implies that people tend to deny their knowledge of Objectivism and live a miserable life.

I don't think so.

------

Anyway, I like it that there are many people of my age on this forum.

Perhaps also: Some think that age isn't relevant in philosophy, and so such people don't see any point in weighing in on this. I'm 49, but I'll pit my knowledge and enthusiasm against any 20 something. ;-)

I must be one of the two in my age group. I'm pretty sure I voted, but then, maybe the old brain cells containing that memory croaked. ;-)

Ribbit.

Mark Peters

Under the poll there should be a line saying:

You have already voted in this poll

If not, just vote.

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I am nineteen years old.

Not really.

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Not really.

Sorry about that. I changed the erroneous profile information - another forumers pointed it out over an IM conversation.

So, still 19.

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Sorry about that. I changed the erroneous profile information - another forumers pointed it out over an IM conversation.

So, still 19.

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I have been told I look old for my age, however it would be a bit much to attempt to pass for 39.

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• 2 weeks later...
I suspect any older Objectivists would be less likely to use an online forum just by virtue of not being as familiar with computers.

I disagree to that. "Older" Objectivists are mostly professionals that have no time to keep up with any forum. You have to identify the age range of your "older" Objectivists.

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I disagree to that. "Older" Objectivists are mostly professionals that have no time to keep up with any forum. You have to identify the age range of your "older" Objectivists.

Also true. The tricky thing about looking at statistics is that any given causative explanation may not be exclusive. I see no reason why it could not be a combination of these factors-- they certainly both seem plausible.

In fact, after thinking a little more about it, my explanation may not hold water. I may be improperly inferring that characteristics shared by most older people (ages 40-70, to answer your other question) are shared by older Objectivists. Most older people I know are uncomfortable checking their email, let alone participating in an online forum. Because it's easier to learn new technology young (when you aren't "set in your ways," so to speak), it makes sense to assume that older people are less likely to participate in an online forum. However, I'm not at all sure that this would be the case, since I imagine that Objectivists (the primary participants at OO.net) would want to be at the forefront of technology.

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• 3 weeks later...

Check your premises. The survey reveals more people over 30 responded than under 19. Maybe it's the young who need to feel more comfortable with the new technology.

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I thought that's what I was doing in my last post!

The survey reveals more people over 30 responded than under 19. Maybe it's the young who need to feel more comfortable with the new technology.

Perhaps-- but the fact that the range (30, +) is larger than the range (0, 19) might also have something to do with that.

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