TODAY   |  November 09, 2012

# Blogger Nate Silver reveals how he called election

## President Obama may have been the big winner this week, but New York Times blogger and statistician Nate Silver came in close second, predicting the outcome of the election in all 50 states. He talks to NBC’s Andrea Canning about the mathematical formula he developed for the election.

#### This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> well, president obama was not the only one who had a good night on tuesday.

>> in a race that came down to the wire a blogger for the "new york times" accurately predicted the outcome. andrea, good morning.

>> good morning, guys. well, he says he's a nerd and he is trying to make math a little bit cool. nate silver is becoming somewhat of a celebrity with his presidential predictions. his blog called 538 which represents the number of electoral votes is quickly becoming the one to watch come election time. president obama may have been the big winner this week, but coming in a close second, "new york times" blogger, statistician, and self-described greek nate silver .

>> nate silver . lord and god of the algorithm.

>> for the second straight presidential election silver's 538 blog was pretty close to perfect in predicting the result. he nailed the outcome in all 50 states . when you were a little kid did you have all the answers?

>> i think i always had a lot of questions. that's what smart people do.

>> reporter: looking for a better way to pick the winning candidates silver created his own formula for playing the odds in political races. he detailed it in his new book "the signal and the noise."

>> people tend to see all this data, all the polls and see the fluctuations and get very distracted by it. in the book i call it noise as opposed to signal.

>> romney/ryan will win with 281 electoral votes .

>> reporter: avoiding the spin of talking heads silver sticks to the numbers, averaging statewide polls, factoring in for uncertainty, and then running a variety of scenarios for how these probabilities would play out.

>> when we say that obama had like a 91% chance of winning the electoral college that meant when we looked at all the combinations of different states he won about 90% of those and romney won the other 10%.

>> projecting that.

>> reporter: like jonah hill 's character in the movie "money ball" silver got his start in baseball predicting player performance. do you think you're the jonah hill of politics?

>> maybe he's the nate silver of baseball. i'm not sure.

>> reporter: with four more years for the president, nate has his own vision for the country.

>> i think math does not need to be intimidating. it can be fun and interesting and useful.

>> reporter: you're making it kind of cool.

>> yeah, hopefully right? hopefully kids will pursue more math and science education . we need more of that to compete in this country.

>> sales of silver's book "the signal and the noise" are any indication math indeed took a big step up in the coolness factor this week. it rose to number two on amazon behind, any idea what the number one book is?

>> no.

>> the latest installment of " diary of a wimpy kid ."

>> hey, very good. nate silver on his trail.

>> wimpy kid wins.

>> and the nerdy kid.

>> they're together.