Monday, August 22, 2005


Part of my current work involves a tool known as the copula (warning: contents of forementioned link may cause brain damage so don't hold me responsible). Now for those of you with slightly more powderful English (or more hum sep minds), a certain other root word will come to mind.

Once and for all, I state this, they are two completely different er... actions, although the concepts are similar.

Indeed, I've been asked many times the question of what my current work is about. I used to say,"Oh, I am trying to model XXX with a tool known as the copula." But I think only the three words in italics register. So two possible scenarios ensue. People either think I am trying to play the fool or they shoot a half dirty look at me. There was even one guy who went,"Oh, isn't that a dirty word?"

Whichever of the two scenarios, the conversation only gets trickier for me from here. I've long given up trying to explain the statistical concept of copula to non-statistical people. So to prevent that from happening, I change my reply in the former question (what my current work is about) to two simple words "insurance related". However, for people who have a reasonable grasp of statistical concepts, such as my actuarial pals, I will try to explain it but will also attempt to cut it as short as possible before I lose the audience, or friends, or both.

Lately, I've been wondering about why the discoverer of this concept called it copula. Of all possible root words to pick from, he picks this one! Maybe he hit upon the idea whilst engaging in the said activity.

Akan Datang: That last flight back here...

221 days to go.


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