Blog Archives

#Some4YearOlds

May 23, 2017
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#Some4YearOlds

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 #Some4YearOlds appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.

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How to think scientifically about scientists’ proposals for fixing science

May 22, 2017
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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 think scientifically about scientists’ proposals for fixing science appeared first…

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Some natural solutions to the p-value communication problem—and why they won’t work.

May 21, 2017
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Some natural solutions to the p-value communication problem—and why they won’t work.

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 solutions to the p-value communication problem—and why they won’t work.…

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#NotAll4YearOlds

May 21, 2017
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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 first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.

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Hotel room aliases of the statisticians

May 20, 2017
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Hotel room aliases of the statisticians

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 aliases of the statisticians appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal…

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A continuous hinge function for statistical modeling

May 19, 2017
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A continuous hinge function for statistical modeling

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 hinge function for statistical modeling appeared first on Statistical Modeling,…

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My review of Duncan Watts’s book, “Everything is Obvious (once you know the answer)”

May 18, 2017
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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...

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Causal inference using Bayesian additive regression trees: some questions and answers

May 18, 2017
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[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 using Bayesian additive regression trees: some questions and answers appeared…

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Using Stan for week-by-week updating of estimated soccer team abilites

May 17, 2017
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Using Stan for week-by-week updating of estimated soccer team abilites

Milad Kharratzadeh shares this analysis of the English Premier League during last year’s famous season. He fit a Bayesian model using Stan, and the R markdown file is here. The analysis has three interesting features: 1. Team ability is allowed to continuously vary throughout the season; thus, once the season is over, you can see […] The post Using Stan for week-by-week updating of estimated soccer team abilites appeared first…

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Taking Data Journalism Seriously

May 16, 2017
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This is a bit of a followup to our recent review of “Everybody Lies.” While writing the review I searched the blog for mentions of Seth Stephens-Davidowitz, and I came across this post from last year, concerning a claim made by author J. D. Vance that “the middle part of America is more religious than […] The post Taking Data Journalism Seriously appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and…

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