A day in the life

August 25, 2016
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I like to post approx one item per day on this blog, so when multiple things come up in the same day, I worry about the sustainability of all this. I suppose I could up the posting rate to 2 a day but I think that could be too much of a burden on the […] The post A day in the life appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference,…

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Lining up the dopers and their medals

August 25, 2016
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Lining up the dopers and their medals

The Times did a great job making this graphic (this snapshot is just the top half): A lot of information is packed into a small space. It's easy to compose the story in our heads. For example, Lee Chong Wai,...

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Stacked Bars Are the Worst

August 25, 2016
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Stacked Bars Are the Worst

Bar charts are great. They always work. They're always the safe choice. Right? Well, no. Stacked bar charts are deceiving because we think they work just like regular bars, when they're really pretty terrible. Some Examples Look at the following chart, showing unemployment numbers for Bavaria. The total height of the bars is easy enough … Continue reading Stacked Bars…

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Hey pollsters! Poststratify on party ID, or we’re all gonna have to do it for you.

August 24, 2016
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Hey pollsters!  Poststratify on party ID, or we’re all gonna have to do it for you.

Alan Abramowitz writes: In five days, Clinton’s lead increased from 5 points to 12 points. And Democratic party ID margin increased from 3 points to 10 points. No, I don’t think millions of voters switched to the Democratic party. I think Democrats are were just more likely to respond in that second poll. And, remember, […] The post Hey pollsters!…

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His varying slopes don’t seem to follow a normal distribution

August 24, 2016
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Bruce Doré writes: I have a question about multilevel modeling I’m hoping you can help with. What should one do when random effects coefficients are clearly not normally distributed (i.e., coef(lmer(y~x+(x|id))) )? Is this a sign that the model should be changed? Or can you stick with this model and infer that the assumption of […] The post His varying…

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Postdoc in Finland with Aki

August 24, 2016
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I’m looking for a postdoc to work with me at Aalto University, Finland. The person hired will participate in research on Gaussian processes, functional constraints, big data, approximative Bayesian inference, model selection and assessment, deep learning, and survival analysis models (e.g. cardiovascular diseases and cancer). Methods will be implemented mostly in GPy and Stan. The […] The post Postdoc in…

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Balancing bias and variance in the design of behavioral studies: The importance of careful measurement in randomized experiments

August 24, 2016
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At Bank Underground: When studying the effects of interventions on individual behavior, the experimental research template is typically: Gather a bunch of people who are willing to participate in an experiment, randomly divide them into two groups, assign one treatment to group A and the other to group B, then measure the outcomes. If you […] The post Balancing bias…

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Halley’s method for finding roots

August 24, 2016
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Halley’s method for finding roots

Edmond Halley (1656-1742) is best known for computing the orbit and predicting the return of the short-period comet that bears his name. However, like many scientists of his era, he was involved in a variety of mathematical and scientific activities. One of his mathematical contributions is a numerical method for […] The post Halley's method for finding roots appeared first…

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A Simple Explanation for the Replication Crisis in Science

August 24, 2016
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A Simple Explanation for the Replication Crisis in Science

By now, you’ve probably heard of the replication crisis in science. In summary, many conclusions from experiments done in a variety of fields have been found to not hold water when followed up in subsequent experiments. There are now any number of fa...

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Evil collaboration between Medtronic and FDA

August 23, 2016
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Paul Alper points us to this news article by Jim Spencer and Joe Carlson that has this amazing bit: Medtronic ran a retrospective study of 3,647 Infuse patients from 2006-2008 but shut it down without reporting more than 1,000 “adverse events” to the government within 30 days, as the law required. Medtronic, which acknowledges it […] The post Evil collaboration…

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Quote of the month

August 23, 2016
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In a post titled "GIGO" (for those who don't like acronyms, Garbage In, Garbage Out), Andrew Gelman wrote this gem: as long as the “garbage out” gets media attention, there will always be somebody willing to supply the “garbage in.” The general drift of that post, and the previous one that led me to it, is a critique of the…

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Bayesian inference completely solves the multiple comparisons problem

August 22, 2016
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Bayesian inference completely solves the multiple comparisons problem

I promised I wouldn’t do any new blogging until January but I’m here at this conference and someone asked me a question about the above slide from my talk. The point of the story in that slide is that flat priors consistently give bad inferences. Or, to put it another way, the routine use of […] The post Bayesian inference…

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One more thing you don’t have to worry about

August 22, 2016
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Baruch Eitam writes: So I have been convinced by the futility of NHT for my scientific goals and by the futility of of significance testing (in the sense of using p-values as a measure of the strength of evidence against the null). So convinced that I have been teaching this for the last 2 years. […] The post One more…

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On deck this week

August 22, 2016
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Mon: One more thing you don’t have to worry about Tues: Evil collaboration between Medtronic and FDA Wed: His varying slopes don’t seem to follow a normal distribution Thurs: A day in the life Fri: Letters we never finished reading Sat: Better to just not see the sausage get made Sun: Oooh, it burns me […] The post On deck…

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Brexit, Bremain, the world did not end so dataviz people can throw shade and color

August 22, 2016
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Brexit, Bremain, the world did not end so dataviz people can throw shade and color

Catching a dose of Alberto Cairo the other day. He has a good post about various Brexit/Bremain maps. The story started with an editor of The Spectator, who went on twitter to make the claim that the map on the...

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Create an animation with the BY statement in PROC SGPLOT

August 22, 2016
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Create an animation with the BY statement in PROC SGPLOT

It is easy to use PROC SGPLOT and BY-group processing to create an animated graph in SAS 9.4. Sanjay Matange previously discussed how to create an animated plot in SAS 9.4, but he used a macro loop to call PROC SGPLOT many times. It is often easier to use the […] The post Create an animation with the BY statement…

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Taking Bayesian Inference Seriously [my talk tomorrow at Harvard conference on Big Data]

August 21, 2016
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Mon 22 Aug, 9:50am, at Harvard Science Center Hall A: Taking Bayesian Inference Seriously Over the years I have been moving toward the use of informative priors in more and more of my applications. I will discuss several examples from theory, application, and computing where traditional noninformative priors lead to disaster, but a little bit […] The post Taking Bayesian…

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Kaiser Fung on the ethics of data analysis

August 21, 2016
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Kaiser gave a presentation and he’s sharing the slides with us here. It’s important stuff. The post Kaiser Fung on the ethics of data analysis appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.

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Kaiser Fung on the ethics of data analysis

August 21, 2016
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Kaiser gave a presentation and he’s sharing the slides with us here. It’s important stuff. The post Kaiser Fung on the ethics of data analysis appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.

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More on Big Data and Mixed Frequencies

August 21, 2016
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I recently blogged on Big Data and mixed-frequency data, arguing that Big Data (wide data, in particular) leads naturally to mixed-frequency data.  (See here for the tall data / wide data / dense data taxonomy.)  The obvious just occurred to ...

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Michael Porter as new pincushion

August 20, 2016
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Some great comments on this post about Ted talk visionary Michael Porter. Most rewarding was this from Howard Edwards: New Zealand seems to score well on his index so perhaps I shouldn’t complain, but Michael Porter was well known in this part of the world 25 years ago when our government commissioned him to write […] The post Michael Porter…

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vtreat 0.5.27 released on CRAN

August 19, 2016
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Win-Vector LLC, Nina Zumel and I are pleased to announce that ‘vtreat’ version 0.5.27 has been released on CRAN. vtreat is a data.frame processor/conditioner that prepares real-world data for predictive modeling in a statistically sound manner. (from the package documentation) Very roughly vtreat accepts an arbitrary “from the wild” data frame (with different column types, … Continue reading vtreat 0.5.27…

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Things that sound good but aren’t quite right: Art and research edition

August 19, 2016
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There are a lot of things you can say that sound very sensible but, upon reflection, are missing something. For example consider this blog comment from Chris G: Years ago I heard someone suggest these three questions for assessing a work of art: 1. What was the artist attempting to do? 2. Were they successful? […] The post Things that…

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