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This is called the 'mere exposure effect', where people tend to express a liking for something purely because of their familiarity to it.

Several of our test respondents literally said, 'I am more familiar' as an explanation of their choice. At first we might think that's okay in this test, because we didn't ask who IS better, we asked who do you prefer. But in the first test we provided no such context, other than the mechanics of the test itself, A or B.

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Left without additional context perhaps people default to 'mere exposure bias' and choose what they know. We're not sure we've really proven anything just yet. The hypothesis we went into these two rounds of tests with was that context matters. Instead, we found that in the case of Williams v. Sandler it didn't matter how you phrased the question.

Though if we had intended to ask who has the better kung-fu we could expect the results of the first test would have been completely erroneous. Let's look at an example where the context is not so obvious; let's do a test with two different website layouts. In this example, we sent out two tests with similar premise as the previous set.

Our goal with these tests was to see which layout our users preferred for our new homepage redesign. In one test we asked the testees giggle , 'Select the variation you prefer'. In the other, we set up the question by starting with an introductory message, 'ZURB is a product design company that is known for their front-end web framework Foundation and their 20 years of experience designing websites and applications for clients like Netflix, Samsung, BAE, and Pixar'.

Next, the testees still giggling were given this prompt: The results above appear to support the hypothesis! If we dig more, and look at these results based on demographics, we could extract even more nuance. For example, in all versions of the tests we covered, filtering could change the outcome, pushing the result from predominantly A to predominantly B or vice versa. For example in both, respondents aged preferred variation B.

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We don't know for certain why some demographic groups found one variation more interesting than the other. Nor can we really say at this moment if the results could be considered 'statistically relevant', as we have not yet discussed what makes a result so.

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But clearly there are a lot more nuances to both conducting a user test and sifting through the data than many designers realize. In our previous iterations of our testing application, we ended up erring on the side of what is known as Frequentist Inference when it came to measuring the results of our tests. In terms we can grock, Frequentist Inference states that all experiments of statistical probability and the observations made therein are independently relevant.

This allows pollers to sidestep the controversial subject of 'statistical relevance' and prop up a number in isolation that really has so significance at all in context. In our own work, we later found that Frequentist Inference while accepted is an incomplete way to look at test results when it comes to design. As we demonstrated in the test examples above, the context of a test can be simple or complex; some things are more ubiquitous than others like knowledge of celebrities , and others required a lot more context to even understand properly what was being asked like design layouts.

Frequentist Inference ignores concepts like prior probability, posterior probability, and other factors that help to address the aforementioned unknown and unknowable context of any set of variables. This epiphany led us down the path of P-Values, Bayesian Statistics, inference, updating, and the even bigger question of induction vs. This epiphany gave us a temporary high, as we were delighted to be reminded that greater minds than ours have attempted to tackle this problem and failed.

Where we would prefer to differ from our predecessors is when we fail, we'd prefer to fail fast as opposed to waiting years as the scientific community has done with P-Values for statistical relevance. We've run you through the gauntlet here. Why do we care so damn much about tests, questions, and the answers they inspire? Why did we just unload on you a variety of hard-to-pronounce three syllable words like Bayesian and Frequentist?

Well, throughout our five years of developing testing apps, we've run thousands of our own tests, and have facilitated many more for our users.

swing state

Similarly, the United States presidential election in Tennessee, went to Bush in both and , but going into , its governor was a Democrat and both chambers of the state legislature were controlled by Democrats as well. The converse can also be true, as in the case of the United States presidential election in Maine, , which had two Republican U. Senators, but the states were won by Democrat John Kerry. In his address before the Democratic National Convention , Barack Obama spoke on the issue of blue states and red states, saying: But I've got news for them, too.

We worship an awesome God in the blue states, and we don't like federal agents poking around our libraries in the red states. We coach Little League in the blue states and have gay friends in the red states. I think most of these states that we have either red or blue are going to be up for grabs. Obama also came close to winning Missouri , losing it by only a 0. Notably, however, the only deviations from the preexisting red-blue paradigm were all in Obama's favor.

A purple state refers to a swing state where both Democratic and Republican candidates receive strong support without an overwhelming majority of support for either party. Purple states are also often referred to as battleground states. The demographic and political applications of the terms have led to a temptation to presume this arbitrary classification is a clear-cut and fundamental cultural division.

Given the general nature and common perception of the two parties, "red state" implies a conservative region or a more conservative American, and "blue state" implies a more liberal region or a more liberal American. But the distinction between the two groups of states is less simplistic. The analysis that suggests political, cultural, and demographic differences between the states is more accurate when applied to smaller geographical areas.

Traditionally, the practice of designating a U.

ZURB - The Purple State

Electoral law in Maine and Nebraska makes it possible for those states to split their electoral votes. Despite the prevalent "winner-take-all" practice, the minority always gets a sizable vote. Individually and collectively, they are not reducible to red or blue.

An emerging area of science that includes network theory, complexity science and big data is changing the way we see and understand complex systems and massive amounts of information by allowing us to see and analyze massive detail. All states were consistent in voting for George W. Bush or his Democratic Party opponent in the and presidential elections, except for three: The election showed two of these three states to be true to the presidential preferences of their respective regions, creating a greater regional separation; thus, an argument that the country was more divided from the election.

purple state

All three of those states were very close in both elections. During the Bush administration, the red-blue map was criticized by some [ citation needed ] for exaggerating the perceived support for President Bush. In the election, Bush received a smaller share of the popular vote than Al Gore, and four years later defeated John Kerry in this count by less than two and a half percentage points. However, because of the large geographical size of many states in the Central and Southern United States, the color-coded map appeared to show a huge tide of support for Bush and the Republicans with thin outliers of Democratic support on the coasts and near the Great Lakes.

In reality, many of the Great Plains and Rocky Mountain states which voted for Bush are relatively sparsely populated Nebraska, for instance, has a population similar to the island of Manhattan.

purple state

While the "blue states" represented a comparatively small geographic area, they contained large populations, which ended up making President Bush's national level of support slimmer than the red—blue map would seem to indicate. Various different maps, such as ones which coded states based on the strength of their support for one candidate or another, ones which gave results based on county, or ones which displayed states according to the size of their population, were proposed as correctives to this perceived flaw.

Feelings of cultural and political polarization between red and blue states, which have gained increased media attention since the election, have led to increased mutual feelings of alienation and enmity. In the election, 31 U. One trend that has been true for several election cycles is that states that vote Republican tend to be more rural and more sparsely populated thus having fewer electoral votes than states that vote Democratic.

Polarization is more evident on a county scale with the growing percentage of the U. Although the Electoral College determines the Presidential election , a more precise measure of how the country actually voted may be better represented by either a county-by-county or a district-by-district map. By breaking the map down into smaller units including many " blue counties " lying next to " red counties " , these maps tend to display many states with a purplish hue, thus demonstrating that an ostensibly "blue" or "red" state may, in fact, be closely divided.

Note that election maps of all kinds are subject to errors of interpretation. For example, in the elections, even in "solidly blue" states, the majority of voters in most rural counties voted for Republican John McCain good examples would be Minnesota , New York , New Jersey , and Maryland , with some exceptions. In "solidly red" states, a majority of voters in most urban counties voted for Democrat Barack Obama ; good examples for this would be Dallas County, Texas and Fulton County, Georgia the homes of major U.

Both provided Obama with double-digit margins of victory over McCain. An even more detailed precinct-by-precinct breakdown demonstrates that in many cases, large cities voted for Obama, but their suburbs were divided. Red states and blue states have several demographic differences from each other. The association between colors and demographics was notably made in a column by Mike Barnicle , and reinforced in a controversial response from Paul Begala , though the association between demographics and voting patterns was well known before that.

McCain held the more suburban and rural areas of both the red and blue states, while Obama received the large majority of the urban city areas in all the states. In terms of age, sex, and marital status, it is thought young adults under age 40 went for Obama. More married men voted for McCain, but more single men voted for Obama.

The same went for women, but a higher percentage of women voted for Obama than McCain. The main constituency for McCain was white middle-aged married males. In terms of religion, Catholics and Protestant Christians were more likely to vote for McCain than Obama, whereas a higher rate of secular atheists, agnostics and other religious votes went for Obama.

The "Democratic blue" and "Republican red" color scheme is now part of the lexicon of American journalism. Neither party national committee has officially accepted these color designations, though informal use by each party is becoming common. Both parties have since adopted logos that use their respective colors a blue "D" for Democrats, [41] and a white "GOP" with a red elephant for Republicans. National conventions for both major parties increasingly feature the parties' respective colors, from the colors emphasized on convention podiums to the color conventioneers can be seen wearing on the delegate floor.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee also alluded the color scheme when it launched a national "Red to Blue Program" in The scheme has found acceptance and implementation from the U. Federal Government, as the Federal Election Commission report for the presidential election uses the red-Republican, blue-Democratic scheme for its electoral map. The choice of colors in this divide may appear counter-intuitive to foreign observers, as in most countries, red is associated with socialist or social democratic parties, while blue is associated with conservative parties.

We live in a purple America and are not as polarized between red and blue as the news media would have us believe. But the most frequently used term among the three is swing state , which seems to have gained traction during the politically tumultuous s. The term underscores the drama of a close election, whose outcome can remain uncertain until the polls close. Famously close presidential contests Kennedy—Nixon in ; Bush—Gore in have been determined by how a handful of swing states ultimately voted.

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Although all three terms can be used interchangeably, they describe the drama of closely contested elections from distinctly different angles.