Stan Weekly Roundup, 23 June 2017

June 23, 2017
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Lots of activity this week, as usual. * Lots of people got involved in pushing Stan 2.16 and interfaces out the door; Sean Talts got the math library, Stan library (that’s the language, inference algorithms, and interface infrastructure), and CmdStan out, while Allen Riddell got PyStan 2.16 out and Ben Goodrich and Jonah Gabry are […] The post Stan Weekly Roundup, 23 June 2017 appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal…

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Best correction ever: “Unfortunately, the correct values are impossible to establish, since the raw data could not be retrieved.”

June 23, 2017
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Best correction ever:  “Unfortunately, the correct values are impossible to establish, since the raw data could not be retrieved.”

Commenter Erik Arnesen points to this: Several errors and omissions occurred in the reporting of research and data in our paper: “How Descriptive Food Names Bias Sensory Perceptions in Restaurants,” Food Quality and Preference (2005) . . . The dog ate my data. Damn gremlins. I hate when that happens. As the saying goes, “Each […] The post Best correction…

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Unit Roots & Structural Breaks

June 23, 2017
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Unit Roots & Structural Breaks

The open-access journal, Econometrics (of which I'm happy to be an Editorial Board member), has recently published a special issue on the topic of "Unit Roots and Structural Breaks". This issue is guest-edited by Pierre Perron, and it include...

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Question about the secret weapon

June 23, 2017
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Question about the secret weapon

Micah Wright writes: I first encountered your explanation of secret weapon plots while I was browsing your blog in grad school, and later in your 2007 book with Jennifer Hill. I found them immediately compelling and intuitive, but I have been met with a lot of confusion and some skepticism when I’ve tried to use […] The post Question about…

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“Developers Who Use Spaces Make More Money Than Those Who Use Tabs”

June 22, 2017
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“Developers Who Use Spaces Make More Money Than Those Who Use Tabs”

Rudy Malka writes: I think you’ll enjoy this nice piece of pop regression by David Robinson: developers who use spaces make more money than those who use tabs. I’d like to know your opinion about it. At the above link, Robinson discusses a survey that allows him to compare salaries of software developers who use […] The post “Developers Who…

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Time-sharing Experiments for the Social Sciences

June 22, 2017
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Jamie Druckman writes: Time-sharing Experiments for the Social Sciences (TESS) is an NSF-funded initiative. Investigators propose survey experiments to be fielded using a nationally representative Internet platform via NORC’s AmeriSpeak® Panel (see http:/tessexperiments.org for more information). In an effort to enable younger scholars to field larger-scale studies than what TESS normally conducts, we are pleased to announce a Special […] The post Time-sharing Experiments…

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scala-glm: Regression modelling in Scala

June 21, 2017
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scala-glm: Regression modelling in Scala

Introduction As discussed in the previous post, I’ve recently constructed and delivered a short course on statistical computing with Scala. Much of the course is concerned with writing statistical algorithms in Scala, typically making use of the scientific and numerical computing library, Breeze. Breeze has all of the essential tools necessary for building statistical algorithms, … Continue reading scala-glm: Regression…

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After Peptidegate, a proposed new slogan for PPNAS. And, as a bonus, a fun little graphics project.

June 21, 2017
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After Peptidegate, a proposed new slogan for PPNAS.  And, as a bonus, a fun little graphics project.

Someone pointed me to this post by “Neuroskeptic”: A new paper in the prestigious journal PNAS contains a rather glaring blooper. . . . right there in the abstract, which states that “three neuropeptides (β-endorphin, oxytocin, and dopamine) play particularly important roles” in human sociality. But dopamine is not a neuropeptide. Neither are serotonin or […] The post After Peptidegate,…

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The jackknife method to estimate standard errors in SAS

June 21, 2017
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The jackknife method to estimate standard errors in SAS

One way to assess the precision of a statistic (a point estimate) is to compute the standard error, which is the standard deviation of the statistic's sampling distribution. A relatively large standard error indicates that the point estimate should be viewed with skepticism, either because the sample size is small [...] The post The jackknife method to estimate standard errors…

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Why I’m not celebrating the 2016 impact factors

Why I’m not celebrating the 2016 impact factors

Once every year, the journal citation reports are released including journal impact factors. This year, the International Journal of Forecasting 2-year impact factor has increased to 2.642 which is the highest it has been in the journal’s history, an...

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Picky people

June 20, 2017
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Picky people

Our book on Bayesian cost-effectiveness analysis using BCEA is out (I think as of last week). This has been a long process (I've talked about this here, here and here). Today I've come back to the office and have open the package with my copies. T...

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On deck through the rest of the year (and a few to begin 2018)

June 20, 2017
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Here they are. I love seeing all the titles lined up in one place; it’s like a big beautiful poem about statistics: After Peptidegate, a proposed new slogan for PPNAS. And, as a bonus, a fun little graphics project. “Developers Who Use Spaces Make More Money Than Those Who Use Tabs” Question about the secret […] The post On deck…

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Even more incompetence in reporting survey results: Washington Post on the hotseat

June 20, 2017
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Previously, we looked at the claim that 7 percent of American adults believe that chocolate milk comes from brown cows. The media, including mainstream outlets such as the Washington Post, demonstrated incompetence in reading survey results. That was before I investigated the other survey covered by the Washington Post in that article about brown cows (link). The Post should immediately…

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Extreme beta distributions

June 20, 2017
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Extreme beta distributions

A beta probability distribution has two parameters, a and b. You can think of these as the number of successes and failures out of a+b trials. The PDF of a beta distribution is approximately normal if a and b are approximately equal and a + b is large. If a and b are close, they don’t have to be very large for the beta […]

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Not everyone’s aware of falsificationist Bayes

June 20, 2017
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Stephen Martin writes: Daniel Lakens recently blogged about philosophies of science and how they relate to statistical philosophies. I thought it may be of interest to you. In particular, this statement: From a scientific realism perspective, Bayes Factors or Bayesian posteriors do not provide an answer to the main question of interest, which is the […] The post Not everyone’s…

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Lowering the GWAS threshold would save millions of dollars

June 20, 2017
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Lowering the GWAS threshold would save millions of dollars

A recent publication (pay-walled) by Boyle et al. introducing the concept of an omnigenic model has generated much discussion. It reminded me of a question I’ve had for a while about the way genetics data is analyzed. Before getting into this, I’ll...

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Data Science Tool Market Share Leading Indicator: Scholarly Articles

June 19, 2017
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Data Science Tool Market Share Leading Indicator: Scholarly Articles

Below is the latest update to The Popularity of Data Science Software. It contains an analysis of the tools used in the most recent complete year of scholarly articles. The section is also integrated into the main paper itself. New … Continue reading →

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Breaking the dataset into little pieces and putting it back together again

June 19, 2017
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Alex Konkel writes: I was a little surprised that your blog post with the three smaller studies versus one larger study question received so many comments, and also that so many people seemed to come down on the side of three smaller studies. I understand that Stephen’s framing led to some confusion as well as […] The post Breaking the…

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How to read survey results: chocolate milk edition

June 19, 2017
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Apparently, the Washington Post decided to assist the dairy industry in its latest advertising campaign by publishing a weird survey result, which claims that some adults believe that chocolate milk comes from brown cows. (link) Just start by thinking about the survey design. In order for people to express this opinion, the survey had to contain a choice of "brown…

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Homecoming (of sort…)

June 19, 2017
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Homecoming (of sort…)

I spent last week in Florence for our Summer School. Of course, it was home-coming for me and I really enjoyed being back to Florence $-$ although it was really hot. I would say I'm not used to that level of heat anymore, if it wasn't for the fact that...

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How to find a feasible point for a constrained optimization in SAS

June 19, 2017
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How to find a feasible point for a constrained optimization in SAS

Most numerical optimization routines require that the user provide an initial guess for the solution. I have previously described a method for choosing an initial guess for an optimization, which works well for low-dimensional optimization problems. Recently a SAS programmer asked how to find an initial guess when there are [...] The post How to find a feasible point for…

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wrapr Implementation Update

June 19, 2017
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wrapr Implementation Update

Introduction The development version of our R helper function wrapr::let() has switched from string-based substitution to abstract syntax tree based substitution (AST based subsitution, or language based substitution). I am looking for some feedback from wrapr::let() users already doing substantial work with wrapr::let(). If you are already using wrapr::let() please test if the current development … Continue reading wrapr Implementation…

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Don’t say “improper prior.” Say “non-generative model.”

June 18, 2017
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[cat picture] In Bayesian Data Analysis, we write, “In general, we call a prior density p(θ) proper if it does not depend on data and integrates to 1.” This was a step forward from the usual understanding which is that a prior density is improper if an infinite integral. But I’m not so thrilled with […] The post Don’t say…

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