A few weeks ago I mentioned a Times article about modeling swine flue spread. The two teams modeling it estimated around 2,000 – 3,000 total infections. Turns out they were off: “On May 15, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimated that there were “upwards of 100,000″ cases in the country, even though only 7,415 had been confirmed at that point.”
Now it doesn’t totally discount the main point of that old post, which was to say that people overestimate the likelihood of a small event happening to them, but it’s also not exactly the one in 299,998,000 the teams came up with. So there’s that.