[Math Lair] Extrapolation

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When dealing with real-world phenomena, of course, it is important to consider the specific nature of the process that is the source of the numbers being generated. If the average temperature one year is, say, 16°C and the average temperature the next year is 15°C, this doesn't mean that we're headed for a new ice age in a few decades. Rather, the difference is best explained as a random fluctuation.