A Psych Science reader-participation game: Name this blog post

September 3, 2015
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A Psych Science reader-participation game:  Name this blog post

In a discussion of yesterday’s post on studies that don’t replicate, Nick Brown did me the time-wasting disservice of pointing out a recent press release from Psychological Science which, as you might have heard, is “the highest ranked empirical journal in psychology.” The press release is called “Blue and Seeing Blue: Sadness May Impair Color […] The post A Psych Science reader-participation game: Name this blog post appeared first on…

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reaching transcendence for Gaussian mixtures

September 2, 2015
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reaching transcendence for Gaussian mixtures

“…likelihood inference is in a fundamental way more complicated than the classical method of moments.” Carlos Amendola, Mathias Drton, and Bernd Sturmfels arXived a paper this Friday on “maximum likelihood estimates for Gaussian mixtures are transcendental”. By which they mean that trying to solve the five likelihood equations for a two-component Gaussian mixture does not […]

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How do you know if your model is going to work? Part 1: The problem

September 2, 2015
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How do you know if your model is going to work? Part 1: The problem

Authors: John Mount (more articles) and Nina Zumel (more articles). “Essentially, all models are wrong, but some are useful.” George Box Here’s a caricature of a data science project: your company or client needs information (usually to make a decision). Your job is to build a model to predict that information. You fit a model, … Continue reading How do…

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USAs usannsynlige presidentkandidat.

September 2, 2015
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USAs usannsynlige presidentkandidat.

With current lag, this should really appear in September but I thought I better post it now in case it does not remain topical. It’s a news article by Linda May Kallestein, which begins as follows: Sosialisten Bernie Sanders: Kan en 73 år gammel jøde, født av polske innvandrere, vokst opp under enkle kår og […] The post USAs usannsynlige…

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To understand the replication crisis, imagine a world in which everything was published.

September 2, 2015
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To understand the replication crisis, imagine a world in which everything was published.

John Snow points me to this post by psychology researcher Lisa Feldman Barrett who reacted to the recent news on the non-replication of many psychology studies with a contrarian, upbeat take, entitled “Psychology Is Not in Crisis.” Here’s Barrett: An initiative called the Reproducibility Project at the University of Virginia recently reran 100 psychology experiments […] The post To understand…

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A not-so-satisfying rose

September 2, 2015
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A not-so-satisfying rose

At the conference in Bavaria, Jay Emerson asked participants to provide comments on the data visualization of the 2014 Environmental Performance Index (link). We looked at the country profiles in particular. Here is one for Singapore: The main object of...

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Mathematical art: Weaving matrices

September 2, 2015
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Mathematical art: Weaving matrices

An artist friend of mine recently created a beautiful abstract image and described the process on her blog. She says that "after painting my initial square, I cut it into strips and split them down the middle, then wove them together.... I had no idea when I started piecing these […] The post Mathematical art: Weaving matrices appeared first on…

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Encounters with HCI Pioneers

September 2, 2015
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Ben Shneiderman has put together a series of postings about the Pioneers of Human-Computer Interaction (HCI). Each includes a brief biography, some personal notes by Ben, as well as Ben’s photos of them. The latter are particularly remarkable, often going back to the 1980s – like the gem at the top of this page, showing … Continue reading Encounters with…

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Books to Read While the Algae Grow in Your Fur, August 2015

September 1, 2015
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Attention conservation notice: I have no taste. Roland and Sabrina Michaud, Mirror of the Orient The Michaud's gorgeous photos from the 1960s and 1970s — mostly of Afghanistan, but also Turkey, Iran, and India — aptly paired with Persian...

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September Reading List

September 1, 2015
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September Reading List

Abeln, B. and J. P. A. M. Jacobs, 2015. Seasonal adjustment with and without revisions: A comparison of X-13ARIMA-SEATS and CAMPLET. CAMA Working Paper 25/2015, Crawford School of Public Policy, Australian National University.Chan, J. C. C. and A. L. G...

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Bayesian analysis of gluten sensitivity

September 1, 2015
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Bayesian analysis of gluten sensitivity

Last week a new study showed that many subjects diagnosed with non-celiac gluten sensitivity (NCGS) were not able to distinguish gluten flour from non-gluten flour in a blind challenge.In this article, I review the the study and use a simple Bayesian m...

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Ahead of their Time

September 1, 2015
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Ahead of their Time

A picture helps understanding facts  – and this since hundreds of years. Investintech presents a (very) short insight in the …Continue reading →

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Stan attribution

September 1, 2015
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Stan attribution

I worry that I get too much credit for Stan. So let me clarify. I didn’t write Stan. Stan is written in C++, and I’ve never in my life written a line of C, or C+, or C++, or C+++, or C-, or any of these things. Here’s a quick description of what we’ve all […] The post Stan attribution…

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Books to Read While the Algae Grow in Your Fur, April 2015

September 1, 2015
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Attention conservation notice: I have no taste. Christian Caryl, Strange Rebels: 1979 and the Birth of the 21st Century A very nicely written popular history of five movements that either began or reached a peak in 1979: the Iranian Revolution, the...

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Course Announcement: 36-401, Modern Regression, Fall 2015

September 1, 2015
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For the first time, I will be teaching a section of the course which is the pre-requisite for my spring advanced data analysis class. This is an introduction to linear regression modeling for our third-year undergrads, and others from related majors;...

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Bayesian regression models using Stan in R

September 1, 2015
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Bayesian regression models using Stan in R

It seems the summer is coming to end in London, so I shall take a final look at my ice cream data that I have been playing around with to predict sales statistics based on temperature for the last couple of weeks [1], [2], [3].Here I will use the new b...

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The Paradox of Replication, and the vindication of the P-value (but she can go deeper) 9/2/15 update (ii)

September 1, 2015
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The Paradox of Replication, and the vindication of the P-value (but she can go deeper) 9/2/15 update (ii)

The Paradox of Replication Critic 1: It’s much too easy to get small P-values. Critic 2: We find it very difficult to get small P-values; only 36 of 100 psychology experiments were found to yield small P-values in the recent Open Science collaboration on replication (in psychology). Is it easy or is it hard? You might say, […]

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likelihood-free inference in high-dimensional models

August 31, 2015
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likelihood-free inference in high-dimensional models

“…for a general linear model (GLM), a single linear function is a sufficient statistic for each associated parameter…” The recently arXived paper “Likelihood-free inference in high-dimensional models“, by Kousathanas et al. (July 2015), proposes an ABC resolution of the dimensionality curse [when the dimension of the parameter and of the corresponding summary statistics] by turning […]

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Constructing an informative prior using meta-analysis

August 31, 2015
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Chris Guure writes: I am trying to construct an informative prior by synthesizing or collecting some information from literature (meta-analysis) and then to apply that to a real data set (it is longitudinal data) for over 20 years follow-up. In constructing the prior using the meta-analysis data, the issue of publication bias came up. I […] The post Constructing an…

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Uri Simonsohn warns us not to be falsely reassured

August 31, 2015
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Uri Simonsohn warns us not to be falsely reassured

I agree with Uri Simonsohn that you don’t learn much by looking at the distribution of all the p-values that have appeared in some literature. Uri explains: Most p-values reported in most papers are irrelevant for the strategic behavior of interest. Covariates, manipulation checks, main effects in studies testing interactions, etc. Including them we underestimate […] The post Uri Simonsohn…

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On deck this week

August 31, 2015
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Mon: Constructing an informative prior using meta-analysis Tues: Stan attribution Wed: Cannabis/IQ follow-up: Same old story Thurs: Defining conditional probability Fri: In defense of endless arguments Sat: Emails I never finished reading Sun: B...

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More shallow science on obesity measures

August 31, 2015
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More shallow science on obesity measures

For those who read the New York Times's stories denigrating BMI as an obesity metric, you have heard only a small part of the story. Their latest senasationalist coverage says that 18% of BMI-obese people are not really obese, with 12% labeled as "healthy obese" and 6% called "skinny fat". This is a major missed opportunity by an important newspaper…

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Compute the number of digits in an integer

August 31, 2015
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Compute the number of digits in an integer

The title of this blog post might seem strange, but I occasionally need to compute the number of digits in a number, usually because I am trying to stuff an integer value into a string. Each time, I have to derive the formula from scratch, so I am writing this […] The post Compute the number of digits in an…

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