Would you prefer three N=300 studies or one N=900 study?

April 23, 2017
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Stephen Martin started off with a question: I’ve been thinking about this thought experiment: — Imagine you’re given two papers. Both papers explore the same topic and use the same methodology. Both were preregistered. Paper A has a novel study (n1=300) with confirmed hypotheses, followed by two successful direct replications (n2=300, n3=300). Paper B has […] The post Would you prefer three N=300 studies or one N=900 study? appeared first…

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Drug-funded profs push drugs

April 22, 2017
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Someone who wishes to remain anonymous writes: I just read a long ProPublica article that I think your blog commenters might be interested in. It’s from February, but was linked to by the Mad Biologist today (https://mikethemadbiologist.com/). Here is a link to the article: https://www.propublica.org/article/big-pharma-quietly-enlists-leading-professors-to-justify-1000-per-day-drugs In short, it’s about a group of professors (mainly economists) […] The post Drug-funded profs…

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Débat sur les prévisions

April 22, 2017
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Il y a quelques semaines, la revue Risque organisait un débat sur la faillite des prévisions, auquel j’avais été convié, comme j’en parlais dans un précédant billet. La retranscription du débat va être publiée dans le prochain num...

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Journals for insignificant results

April 21, 2017
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Tom Daula writes: I know you’re not a fan of hypothesis testing, but the journals in this blog post are an interesting approach to the file drawer problem. I’ve never heard of them or their like. An alternative take (given academia standard practice) is “Journal for XYZ Discipline papers that p-hacking and forking paths could […] The post Journals for…

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Automated Time-Series Forecasting at Google

April 20, 2017
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Check out this piece on automated time-series forecasting at Google.  It's a fun and quick read. Several aspects are noteworthy.  On the upside:-- Forecast combination features prominently -- they combine forecasts from an ensemble of models....

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Teaching Statistics: A Bag of Tricks (second edition)

April 20, 2017
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Teaching Statistics:  A Bag of Tricks (second edition)

Hey! Deb Nolan and I finished the second edition of our book, Teaching Statistics: A Bag of Tricks. You can pre-order it here. I love love love this book. As William Goldman would say, it’s the “good parts version”: all the fun stuff without the standard boring examples (counting colors of M&M’s, etc.). Great stuff […] The post Teaching Statistics:…

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Melbourne Data Science Week, 29 May – 2 June 2017

April 20, 2017
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Melbourne Data Science Week, 29 May – 2 June 2017

Melbourne Data Science Week 29 May – 2 June 2017 Two sold out events from 2016 are combining in 2017 to create what will hopefully be a great Data Science-palooza for Melbourne. Learn about applications, data, ideas and the latest … Continue reading →

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Post-doc

April 20, 2017
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Post-doc

If you fancy becoming like the crazy, purple minion, we have a Research Associated position at the UCL Institute for Global Health (with whom I've been heavily involved in the past year or so, while organising our new MSc Health Economics & De...

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Representists versus Propertyists: RabbitDucks – being good for what?

April 19, 2017
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Representists versus Propertyists: RabbitDucks – being good for what?

It is not that unusual in statistics to get the same statistical output (uncertainty interval, estimate, tail probability,etc.) for every sample, or some samples or the same distribution of outputs or the same expectations of outputs or just close enough expectations of outputs. Then, I would argue one has a variation on a DuckRabbit. In […] The post Representists versus…

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Some thoughts on the downsides of current Data Science practice

April 19, 2017
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Some thoughts on the downsides of current Data Science practice

Bert Huang has a nice blog talking about poor results of ML/AI algorithms in “wild” data, which echos some of my experience and thoughts. His conclusions are worth thinking about, IMO. 1. Big data is complex data. As we go out and collect more data from a finite world, we’re necessarily going to start collecting […]

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My proposal for JASA: “Journal” = review reports + editors’ recommendations + links to the original paper and updates + post-publication comments

April 19, 2017
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My proposal for JASA:  “Journal” = review reports + editors’ recommendations + links to the original paper and updates + post-publication comments

Whenever they’ve asked me to edit a statistics journal, I say no thank you because I think I can make more of a contribution through this blog. I’ve said no enough times that they’ve stopped asking me. But I’ve had an idea for awhile and now I want to do it. I think that journals […] The post My proposal…

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Regression with restricted cubic splines in SAS

April 19, 2017
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Regression with restricted cubic splines in SAS

Restricted cubic splines are a powerful technique for modeling nonlinear relationships by using linear regression models. I have attended multiple SAS Global Forum presentations that show how to use restricted cubic splines in SAS regression procedures. However, the presenters have all used the %RCSPLINE macro (Frank Harrell, 1988) to generate [...] The post Regression with restricted cubic splines in SAS…

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My talk this Friday in the Machine Learning in Finance workshop

April 18, 2017
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My talk this Friday in the Machine Learning in Finance workshop

This is kinda weird because I don’t know anything about machine learning in finance. I guess the assumption is that statistical ideas are not domain specific. Anyway, here it is: What can we learn from data? Andrew Gelman, Department of Statistics and Department of Political Science, Columbia University The standard framework for statistical inference leads […] The post My talk…

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Group-By Modeling in R Made Easy

April 18, 2017
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Group-By Modeling in R Made Easy

There are several aspects of the R language that make it hard to learn, and repeating a model for groups in a data set used to be one of them. Here I briefly describe R’s built-in approach, show a much … Continue reading →

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Hope & Faith

April 18, 2017
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Hope & Faith

In a remarkable and unpredictable (may be?) turn of events, the UK Prime Minister has today sort-of-called a general election for this coming June $-$ sort-of, if you don't follow UK politics, because technically a law prevents the PM to call snap elec...

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Jerzy Neyman and “Les Miserables Citations” (statistical theater in honor of his birthday)

April 18, 2017
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Jerzy Neyman and “Les Miserables Citations” (statistical theater in honor of his birthday)

For my final Jerzy Neyman item, here’s the post I wrote for his birthday last year:  A local acting group is putting on a short theater production based on a screenplay I wrote:  “Les Miserables Citations” (“Those Miserable Quotes”) [1]. The “miserable” citations are those everyone loves to cite, from their early joint 1933 paper: We are inclined to think that as […]

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In Praise of T.A.s

April 18, 2017
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In Praise of T.A.s

With another teaching term completed, I'm reminded of how much we faculty members rely on our Teaching Assistants (T.A.s) This is especially true in the case of large undergraduate classes, where we'd be run off our feet without the invaluable input fr...

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Context, color and animation: a nice effort

April 18, 2017
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Context, color and animation: a nice effort

What made this infographic from South Carolina Ports is the choice of contextual comparisons. The simple animation also helps. (Original here if the animated gif isn't working.) The random colors mean nothing but they did make me look at the...

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Reputational incentives and post-publication review: two (partial) solutions to the misinformation problem

April 18, 2017
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So. There are erroneous analyses published in scientific journals and in the news. Here I’m not talking not about outright propaganda, but about mistakes that happen to coincide with the preconceptions of their authors. We’ve seen lots of examples. Here are just a few: – Political scientist Larry Bartels is committed to a model of […] The post Reputational incentives…

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Workshop on The Regression Discontinuity Design

April 18, 2017
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Workshop on The Regression Discontinuity Design

As part of our bid to get an MRC grant (which we managed to do), we promised that, if successful, we'd also have a dissemination workshop, at the end of the project. Well, the project on the Regression Discontinuity Design (RDD) has now finished f...

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Le Monde puzzle [#1003]

April 17, 2017
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Le Monde puzzle [#1003]

A purely arithmetic Le Monde mathematical puzzle: Find the four integers w, x, y, z such that the four smallest pairwise sums among the six pairwise sums are 59, 65, 66, and 69. Similarly, find the four smallest of the five integers v, x, y, z such that the five smallest pairwise sums among the […]

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Donald Trump’s nomination as an unintended consequence of Citizens United

April 17, 2017
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The biggest surprise of the 2016 election campaign was Donald Trump winning the Republican nomination for president. A key part of the story is that so many of the non-Trump candidates stayed in the race so long because everyone thought Trump was doomed, so they were all trying to grab Trump’s support when he crashed. […] The post Donald Trump’s…

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Fitting hierarchical GLMs in package X is like driving car Y

April 17, 2017
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Fitting hierarchical GLMs in package X is like driving car Y

Given that Andrew started the Gremlin theme (the car in the image at the right), I thought it would only be fitting to link to the following amusing blog post: Chris Brown: Choosing R packages for mixed effects modelling based on the car you drive (on the seascape models blog) It’s exactly what it says […] The post Fitting hierarchical…

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