12 Responses to Ducks overdue for next major athletics scandal

  1. Dog says:

    Please note that the magnitude scale for the older earthquakes is not well known – its basically estimated from the sediment depth layers from core drilling the turbidity canyons (which are now easily seen in the latest Google Earth images off the Oregon coast). These canyons form when the continental shelf shakes like crazy and lots of sediment rolls down the continental slope (at high velocity) and carve these canyons. The magnitudes of the larger quakes could be higher (like around 9.5) for some occurrences.

    A very good article on all of this, which comes outside the normal channels, can be found here


    • uomatters says:

      It’s even harder to determine the timing and magnitude of athletic scandals, as we learned from Gottfredson’s cover-up.

  2. Hippo says:

    I would guess that the interarrival times for scandals, unlike earthquakes, is truly memoryless (exponential), since our institutional memory is so limited and responses so short-term.

  3. Zaq says:

    I have a serious question about earthquake prediction: is there any evidence of the imminent “big one” other than historical trends? This whole business seems a bit too inductive for me to really take the threat seriously, but I know nothing about earthquake science.

    With academic scandals we can deduce the data-generating process based on the incompetence of the administration. Can we do anything of the sort with earthquakes?

  4. Dog says:


    Two points

    1. Clearly there have been major earthquakes along the Cascadia zone and clearly the last one occurred on a longer timescale than
    the period between major quakes. So, statistically another one should strike now (now being now +/- 50 years).

    2. Google on Cascadia Initiative to find that we have 12,000 sensors out there monitoring the plate for deformation as we are likely to have 2-3 weeks of advanced warning. In addition. there are current active volcanoes (undersea) on the main pressure ridge line, so the engine has not stopped.

  5. no_expert_on_earthquakes_but says:


    Regarding your first point: you seem to say that the arrival of earthquakes is not Poissonian (otherwise, the probability of the next earthquake would be independent of how long ago the previous one was). Are there papers on what the waiting time or arrival time distribution might be for this type of earthquakes?

    • Hippo says:

      The process is obviously non-Markovian. Tension in plates builds up over time, making the probability of an event depend greatly on distance to previous earthquake. I am too lazy to do a search, but yes there is huge literature saying that earthquakes do not follow a Poisson process.

  6. Dog says:

    One more reference

    this is a comprehensive statistical treatment of occurrences (over the last 10,000 years) that also focuses on the notable gaps between occurrences