# Author: xi'an

## the Frankenstein chronicles

Over a lazy weekend, I watched the TV series The Frankenstein Chronicles, which I found quite remarkable (if definitely Gothic and possibly too gory for some!). Connections with celebrities of (roughly) the time abound: While Mary Shelley makes an appearance in the first season of the series, not only as the writer of the famous […]

## no country for old liars

A puzzle from the Riddler about a group of five persons, A,..,E, where all and only people strictly older than L are liars, all making statements about others’ ages: A: B>20 and D>16 B: C>18 and E<20 C: D<22 and A=19 D: E≠20 and B=20 E: A>21 and C<18 The Riddler is asking for the […]

## “Scientists find genetic mutation that makes woman feel no pain”

A frontpage title in The Guardian of yesterday led me to think this was yet another entry about the Brexit Mayhem. Explaining much of the current mess. After checking it appeared to be unrelated… although the patient’s name being Cameron ma…

## Le Monde puzzle [#1088]

A board (Ising!) Le Monde mathematical puzzle in the optimisation mode, again: On a 7×7 board, what is the maximal number of locations that one can occupy when imposing at least two empty neighbours ? Which I tried to solve by brute force and simulated annealing (what else?!), first defining a target targ=function(tabz){ sum(tabz[-c(1,9),-c(1,9)]-1.2*(tabz[-c(1,9),-c(1,9)]*tabz[-c(8,9),-c(1,9)] +tabz[-c(1,9),-c(1,9)]*tabz[-c(1,2),-c(1,9)] […]

## position in statistics and/or machine learning at ENSAE ParisTech‐CREST

ENSAE ParisTech and CREST are currently inviting applications for a position of Assistant or Associate Professor in Statistics or Machine Learning. The appointment starts in September, 2019, at the earliest. At the level of Assistant Professor, the position is for an initial three-year term renewable for another three years before the tenure evaluation. Salary is […]

## (x=scan())%in%(2*4^(n=0:x)-2^n-1)

One challenge on code golf is to find the shortest possible code to identify whether or not an integer belongs to the binary cyclops numbers which binary expansion is 0, 101, 11011, 1110111, 111101111, &tc. The n-th such number being this leads to the above solution in R (26 bits). The same length as the […]

## Bernoulli race particle filters

Sebastian Schmon, Arnaud Doucet and George Deligiannidis have recently arXived an AISTATS paper with the above nice title. The motivation for the extension is facing intractable particle weights for state space models, as for instance in discretised diffusions.  In most cases, actually, the weight associated with the optimal forward proposal involves an intractable integral which […]

## O’Bayes 2019, more posters if you please!

As the announcement for O’Bayes 2019 appeared in the March issue of the IMS Bulletin I just received, let me call for further poster submissions to the meeting. The deadline for travel support submission is past, but poster submissions are welcomed till June 15. (Overlap with BNP12 is not an issue!) Submissions should be sent […]

## EntropyMCMC [R package]

My colleague from the Université d’Orléans, Didier Chauveau, has just published on CRAN a new R package called EntropyMCMC, which contains convergence assessment tools for MCMC algorithms, based on non-parametric estimates of the Kullback-Leibler divergence between current distribution and target. (A while ago, quite a while ago!, we actually collaborated with a few others on […]

## foundations of data science [editorial]

The American Institute of Mathematical Sciences, one of eight NSF-funded mathematical institutes, is supporting a new journal on data sciences called Foundations of Data Science, with editors in chief Ajay Jasra, Kody Law, and Vasileios Maroulas. Since I know them reasonably well (!). I have asked the editors for an editorial and they obliged by […]

## Lies sleeping [book review]

This is the seventh book in the Rivers of London series, by Ben Aaronovitch, which I have been expecting a long time. Avoiding the teasers like The Furthest Station, which appears primarily as a way to capitalise on readers’ impatience. And maybe due to this long wait or simply fatigue of the writer (or reader?!), […]

## statlearn 2019, Grenoble

In case you are near the French Alps next week, STATLEARN 2019 will take place in Grenoble, the week after next, 04 and 05 April. The program is quite exciting, registration is free of charge!, and still open, plus the mountains are next door!

## abandon ship [value]!!!

The Abandon Statistical Significance paper we wrote with Blakeley B. McShane, David Gal, Andrew Gelman, and Jennifer L. Tackett has now appeared in a special issue of The American Statistician, “Statistical Inference in the 21st Century: A World Beyond p < 0.05“.  A 400 page special issue with 43 papers available on-line and open-source! Food […]

## Dutch summer workshops on Bayesian modeling

Just received an email about two Bayesian workshops in Amsterdam this summer: “Theory and Practice of Bayesian Hypothesis Testing, A JASP Workshop”  August 22 – August 23, 2019 “Bayesian Modeling for Cognitive Science, A JAGS and WinBUGS Workshop” August 26 – August 30 both taking place at the University of Amsterdam. And focussed on Bayesian […]

## dominating measure

Yet another question on X validated reminded me of a discussion I had once  with Jay Kadane when visiting Carnegie Mellon in Pittsburgh. Namely the fundamentally ill-posed nature of conjugate priors. Indeed, when considering the definition of a conjugate family as being a parameterised family Þ of distributions over the parameter space Θ stable under […]