My blog was down for almost a couple of weeks due to some changes with how google handles account payments and blogger in particular. Sorry about that.

My blog was down for almost a couple of weeks due to some changes with how google handles account payments and blogger in particular. Sorry about that.

A few days ago I shared my reactions to an op-ed by developmental psychologist Alison Gopnik. Gopnik replied: As a regular reader of your blog, I thought you and your readers might be interested in a response to your very fair comments. In the original draft I had an extra few paragraphs (below) that speak […] The post How is…

Top-down design means designing from the client application programmer interface (API) down to the code. The API lays out a precise functional specification, which says what the code will do, not how it will do it. Coding bottom up means coding the lowest-level foundations first, testing them, then continuing to build. Sometimes this requires dropping […] The post Design top…

I wrote this article for a sociology journal: Science is in crisis. Any doubt about this status has surely been been dispelled by the loud assurances to the contrary by various authority figures who are deeply invested in the current system and have written things such as, “Psychology is not in crisis, contrary to popular […] The post How to…

In last week's article about the Flint water crisis, I computed the 90th percentile of a small data set. Although I didn't mention it, the value that I reported is different from the the 90th percentile that is reported in Significance magazine. That is not unusual. The data only had [...] The post Quantile definitions in SAS appeared first on…

It is always the little things… Over the years, I have been totally happy with almost everything about Github, but I have also been waiting for one little thing: I wish we could enclose text that contains N backticks with a pair of N + 1 backticks in Github issues/comments, i.e., ```` ```{r, echo=TRUE} 1 + 1 ``` ```` so…

This post is not by Andrew. This post is by Phil. This post is prompted by Andrew’s recent post about the book “Everything is obvious once you know the answer,” together with a recent discussion I’ve been involved in. I’m going to say something obvious. True story: earlier this year I was walking around […] The post An obvious…

John Carlin and I write: It is well known that even experienced scientists routinely misinterpret p-values in all sorts of ways, including confusion of statistical and practical significance, treating non-rejection as acceptance of the null hypothesis, and interpreting the p-value as some sort of replication probability or as the posterior probability that the null hypothesis […] The post Some natural…

I think there’s something wrong this op-ed by developmental psychologist Alison Gopnik, “4-year-olds don’t act like Trump,” and which begins, The analogy is pervasive among his critics: Donald Trump is like a child. . . . But the analogy is profoundly wrong, and it’s unfair to children. The scientific developmental research of the past 30 […] The post #NotAll4YearOlds appeared…

Win-Vector LLC has recently been teaching how to use R with big data through Spark and sparklyr. We have also been helping clients become productive on R/Spark infrastructure through direct consulting and bespoke training. I thought this would be a good time to talk about the power of working with big-data using R, share some … Continue reading New series:…

Barry Petchesky writes: Below you’ll find a room list found before Game 1 at the Four Seasons in Houston (right across from the arena), where the Thunder were staying for their first-round series against the Rockets. We didn’t run it then because we didn’t want Rockets fans pulling the fire alarm or making late-night calls […] The post Hotel room…

This comes up sometimes in my applied work: I want a continuous “hinge function,” something like the red curve above, connecting two straight lines in a smooth way. Why not include the sharp corner (in this case, the function y=-0.5*x if x0)? Two reasons. First, computation: Hamiltonian Monte Carlo can trip on discontinuities. Second, I […] The post A continuous…

I have used on.exit() for several years, but it was not until the other day that I realized a very weird thing about it: you’d better follow the default positions of its arguments expr and add, i.e., the first argument has to be expr and the second has to be add. on.exit(expr = NULL, add = FALSE) If you do…

While the Riddler puzzle this week was anticlimactic, as it meant filling all digits in the above division towards a null remainder, it came as an interesting illustration of how different division is taught in the US versus France: when I saw the picture above, I had to go and check an American primary school […]

We had some recent discussion of this book in the comments and so I thought I’d point you to my review from a few years ago. Lots to chew on in the book, and in the review. The post My review of Duncan Watts’s book, “Everything is Ob...

[cat picture] Rachael Meager writes: We’re working on a policy analysis project. Last year we spoke about individual treatment effects, which is the direction we want to go in. At the time you suggested BART [Bayesian additive regression trees; these are not averages of tree models as are usually set up; rather, the key is […] The post Causal inference…

A few months ago Jenny wanted me (and Karthik, if I remember correctly) to share some experience with GIFs. I have been busy with writing the blogdown book recently and don’t really have much time, so I’m going to write a quick post just to take a short break. I may expand this post in the future. First thing first.…