Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Bollocks du jour no. 1

With apologies to Ben Goldacre for borrowing the wonderful phrase, 'bollocks du jour' from his book "Bad Science" (which surely belongs on any thinking being's list of essential reads), I present the first in an occasional series of internet gleanings replete with wrong thinking, bad science, worse use of statistics and arrant stupidity. And this first one isn't even about tobacco!

There seems to be a distinct dearth of science in this Daily Wail report claiming that using electronic gadgets for two hours before bed time can cause sleep problems. Of real interest is the line at the bottom of the article saying that "The study was funded by Sharp Laboratories of America". Even more interesting to discover that the main business of Sharp Laboratories of America is in the field of video and display technology. The original article is here, and it seems to contain little very extra information, not even a suggestion of the size of the subject groups included in the research which does tend to suggests a lack of statistical validity.

It does make you wonder if Sharp Laboratories of American already has a solution to the 'problem' in the works...