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Benford’s Law isn’t actually a statistical principle, but it
has significant statistical components, implications,
and rationale. Conduct some basic research into this
law and consider some situations in which engineering
might deal with naturally occurring datasets that could
be evaluated or described using it. Think about what
you’ve learned about probability and how it can help
explain why data behaves as described by Benford.
Write and submit an essay that uses the principles
of probability covered in this class to explain the
basic observations enabled by Benford’s Law. Offer
some suggestions for how Benford’s Law might be
useful in one or more engineering situations, and
why you think so. (Hint: Think in terms of an
engineering application where you might want to
validate that arriving data is real.)
To earn credit with this assignment, the submitted
essay must be well-written, original, cleanly
presented, and offer a complete discussion of the
topic. It should be engagingly written at a serious
junior undergraduate academic level. Every year I
reject one or two.