What are some interesting, historical applied statistics problems ? i.e. sometime in the past that statistics have been used to affect the course of events?
The kind of problems I am looking for are things like
- German Tank Problem - bayesian statistics applied to estimate number of enemy tanks
- Florence Nightingale - showing that disease is the largest killer
- Abraham Wald Memo - armor the parts of the airplanes that do not have holes in them (selection bias)
I have been able to find a lot of classic statistic "paradoxes" like the 2 envelope problem, or the 2 daughters problem. But not that many actually applied. I am interested in the paradox problems only in so much as they are historically relevant for instance.
- Monty Hall Problem - great "paradox", and interesting because of its famous use an an actual game show
to clarify, the examples I gave were war & destruction themed. But I would be just as interested in a clever example of a company exploiting stats to make money.