Chance, risk, uncertainty: they're all part of our lives, whether we're in business or on the school run, deciding future strategy or just the best route home.
Sometimes their effects are intriguing: a streak of extraordinary luck, say, or some bizarre coincidence.
More often they just leave us confused, unnerved - even anxious.
When is a series of odd events mere happenstance, or something more significant?
How do we make sense of the ever-changing evidence about what's good or bad for us?
Just how reliable are predictions of weather, climate and elections - and how should we respond to them?
In this book, award-winning scientist and writer Robert Matthews shows how we can cut through such conundrums using some of the most potent intellectual tools ever developed: the laws of probability.
Using real-life examples, he shows how to wield them to: Understand and even predict coincidencesTell when insurance policies are worth havingMake sense of medical tests and scientific 'breakthroughs'Judge when "expert" evidence is compelling or questionableMake decisions about everything from sports betting to weather forecastsProfessor Matthews also gives a groundbreaking introduction to the power of Bayes's Theorem, whose ability to turn evidence into insight is now transforming our lives - and helping to unmask a major scientific scandal.