Invited sessions at ISF2017

February 27, 2017
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Invited sessions at ISF2017

We are still looking for a few more invited sessions for the International Symposium on Forecasting, to be held in Cairns, Australia, 25-28 June 2017. An invited session consists of 3 or 4 talks around a specific, forecasting theme. You are allowed to be one of the speakers in a session you organize (although it […]

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Ethics and the Replication Crisis and Science (my talk Tues 6pm)

February 27, 2017
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I’ll be speaking on Ethics and the Replication Crisis and Science tomorrow (Tues 28 Feb) 6-7:30pm at room 411 Fayerweather Hall, Columbia University. I don’t plan to speak for 90 minutes; I assume there will be lots of time for discussion. Here’s the abstract that I whipped up: Busy scientists sometimes view ethics and philosophy […] The post Ethics and…

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Did Trump win because his name came first in key states? Maybe, but I’m doubtful.

February 27, 2017
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The above headline (without the “Maybe, but I’m doubtful”) is from a BBC News article, which continues: One of the world’s leading political scientists believes Donald Trump most likely won the US presidential election for a very simple reason, writes Hannah Sander – his name came first on the ballot in some critical swing states. […] The post Did Trump…

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Point/Counterpoint: Should a programming language accept misspelled keywords?

February 27, 2017
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Point/Counterpoint: Should a programming language accept misspelled keywords?

Longtime SAS programmers know that the SAS DATA step and SAS procedures are very tolerant of typographical errors. You can misspell most keywords and SAS will "guess" what you mean. For example, if you mistype "PROC" as "PRC," SAS will run the program but write a warning to the log: [...] The post Point/Counterpoint: Should a programming language accept misspelled…

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I’m Niall Ferguson without the money

February 27, 2017
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I’m Niall Ferguson without the money

Somehow I agreed or volunteered to give 6 talks on different topics to different audiences during a two-week period. Maybe I need to use Google calendar with some sort of spacing feature. Giving talks is fun, and it’s a public service, but this...

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Machine Learning and Econometrics V: Time Series

February 26, 2017
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[Notice that I changed the title from "Machine Learning vs. Econometrics" to "Machine Learning and  Econometrics", as the two are complements, not competitors, as this post will begin to emphasize. But I've kept the numbering, so this is number fi...

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Iteration and closures in R

February 26, 2017
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Iteration and closures in R

I recently read an interesting thread on unexpected behavior in R when creating a list of functions in a loop or iteration. The issue is solved, but I am going to take the liberty to try and re-state and slow down the discussion of the problem (and fix) for clarity. The issue is: are references … Continue reading Iteration and…

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Forecasting mean and sd of time series

February 26, 2017
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Garrett M. writes: I had two (hopefully straightforward) questions related to time series analysis that I was hoping I could get your thoughts on: First, much of the work I do involves “backtesting” investment strategies, where I simulate the performance of an investment portfolio using historical data on returns. The primary summary statistics I generate […] The post Forecasting mean…

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Improv

February 25, 2017
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I like this new thing of lecturing improv. I feel that it helps the audience stay focused, as they have to keep the structure of the talk in their heads while it’s happening. Also it enforces more logic in my own presentation, as I’m continually looping back to remind myself and the audience how each […] The post Improv appeared…

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Exposure to Stan has changed my defaults: a non-haiku

February 24, 2017
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Now when I look at my old R code, it looks really weird because there are no semicolons Each line of code just looks incomplete As if I were writing my sentences like this Whassup with that, huh Also can I please no longer do <- I much prefer = Please The post Exposure to Stan has changed my defaults:…

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Is Rigor Contagious? (my talk next Monday 4:15pm at Columbia)

February 24, 2017
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Is Rigor Contagious? Much of the theory and practice of statistics and econometrics is characterized by a toxic mixture of rigor and sloppiness. Methods are justified based on seemingly pure principles that can’t survive reality. Examples of these principles include random sampling, unbiased estimation, hypothesis testing, Bayesian inference, and causal identification. Examples of uncomfortable reality […] The post Is Rigor…

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Note to Deborah Mayo

February 24, 2017
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I have a post coming on 2 Mar on preregistration that I think you’ll like. It unifies some ideas regarding statistical design and analysis, and in some ways it’s a follow-up to my Borscht Belt post. The post Note to Deborah Mayo appeared f...

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He wants to know what book to read to learn statistics

February 24, 2017
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Tim Gilmour writes: I’m an early 40s guy in Los Angeles, and I’m sort of sending myself back to school, specifically in statistics — not taking classes, just working through things on my own. Though I haven’t really used math much since undergrad, a number of my personal interests (primarily epistemology) would be much better […] The post He wants…

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Eurostat microdata conference

February 24, 2017
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Heike Wirth writes: Registration to the 5th European User Conference for EU-Microdata, Mannheim, March 2-3, 2017 is open. The 5th European User Conference for EU-Microdata provides an international forum for the exchange of research based on EU-SILC,EU-LFS, AES, SES, CIS, EHIS and HBS data. An important aim of the conference is to bring together researchers […] The post Eurostat microdata…

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a riddle at the end of its tether

February 23, 2017
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a riddle at the end of its tether

A simply worded riddle this week on The Riddler, about four ropes having non-uniform and unknown burning rates, the only constraint being they all burn completely in one hour. With the help of a lighter (or even a single match), what are the possible units of time one can measure by burning them? While I […]

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Workshops & courses doing Bayesian data analysis, June – Aug 2017

February 23, 2017
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Workshops & courses doing Bayesian data analysis, June – Aug 2017

Upcoming multi-day workshops in doing Bayesian data analysis (2017):June 5 - 9. Stats Camp, Albuquerque, New Mexico (USA). Taught by Prof. John Kruschke. June 12 - 16. Global School for Empirical Research Methods, St. Gallen, Switzerland. Taught by ...

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Gartner’s 2017 Take on Data Science Software

February 23, 2017
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Gartner’s 2017 Take on Data Science Software

In my ongoing quest to track The Popularity of Data Analysis Software, I’ve finally decided to change the title to use the newer term “data science”. The 2017 version of Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for Data Science Platforms was just published, … Continue reading →

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Division of labor and a Pizzagate solution

February 23, 2017
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Division of labor and a Pizzagate solution

I firmly believe that the general principles of social science can improve our understanding of the world. Today I want to talk about two principles—division of labor from economics, and roles from sociology—and their relevance to the Pizzagate scandal involving Brian Wansink, the Cornell University business school professor and self-described “world-renowned eating behavior expert for […] The post Division of…

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Light entertainment: Making art by making data

February 23, 2017
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Light entertainment: Making art by making data

Chris P. sent in this link to a Wired feature on "infographics." The first entry is by Giorgia Lupi and Stefanie Posavec. These are fun images and I enjoy looking at it as hand-drawn art. But it's a stretch to...

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Les sondages avaient tout faux en 2016? Ah bon?

February 22, 2017
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Les sondages avaient tout faux en 2016? Ah bon?

Allez, un dernier billet sur les sondages, d’autant plus que le débat de demain soir devrait porter (plus spécifiquement) sur les faillites sur sondages anglais et américains, de 2016. Alors comme ça les sondages seraient “faux” ? Je n’aime pas cette terminologie. J’ai l’impression que la confusion vient en grande partie du fait qu’on analyse, au final, un vote aux…

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Cloak and dagger

February 22, 2017
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Cloak and dagger

Elan B. writes: I saw this JAMA Pediatrics article [by Julia Raifman, Ellen Moscoe, and S. Bryn Austin] getting a lot of press for claiming that LGBT suicide attempts went down 14% after gay marriage was legalized. The heart of the study is comparing suicide attempt rates (in last 12 months) before and after exposure — gay marriage legalization […] The post Cloak and…

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Cloak and dagger

February 22, 2017
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Cloak and dagger

Elan B. writes: I saw this JAMA Pediatrics article [by Julia Raifman, Ellen Moscoe, and S. Bryn Austin] getting a lot of press for claiming that LGBT suicide attempts went down 14% after gay marriage was legalized. The heart of the study is comparing suicide attempt rates (in last 12 months) before and after exposure — gay marriage legalization […] The post Cloak and…

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An enjoyable romp through the movies

February 22, 2017
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An enjoyable romp through the movies

Chris P. tipped me about this wonderful webpage containing an analysis of high-grossing movies. The direct link is here. First, a Trifecta checkup: This thoughtful web project integrates beautifully rendered, clearly articulated graphics with the commendable objective of bringing data...

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