# Category: Statistics

## Pommard

## Isogeny-based encryption

If and when large quantum computers become practical, all currently widely deployed method for public key cryptography will break. Even the most optimistic proponents of quantum computing believe such computers are years away, maybe decades. But it also takes years, maybe decades, to develop, test, and deploy new encryption methods, and so researchers are working […]

## Claims about excess road deaths on “4/20” don’t add up

Sam Harper writes: Since you’ve written about similar papers (that recent NRA study in NEJM, the birthday analysis) before and we linked to a few of your posts, I thought you might be interested in this recent blog post we wrote about a similar kind of study claiming that fatal motor vehicle crashes increase by 12% after 4:20pm […]

## haunting of tramcar 105 [book review]

A mix of steampunk and urban magic in a enlightened 1912 Cairo sounded like a good prolegomena and I bought P. Djèli Clark’s The haunting of tram car 015 on this basis. As it happens, this is actually a novella of 123 pages building on the same universe as a previous work of the author, […]

## Animating the US Treasury yield curve rates

I ponder the limitations of animation, and how much work is needed to turn a fun animation into a great story.

## A question about the piranha problem as it applies to A/B testing

Wicaksono Wijono writes: While listening to your seminar about the piranha problem a couple weeks back, I kept thinking about a similar work situation but in the opposite direction. I’d be extremely grateful if you share your thoughts. So the piranha problem is stated as “There can be some large and predictable effects on behavior, […]

## Neyman: Distinguishing tests of statistical hypotheses and tests of significance might have been a lapse of someone’s pen

I’ll continue to post Neyman-related items this week in honor of his birthday. This isn’t the only paper in which Neyman makes it clear he denies a distinction between a test of statistical hypotheses and significance tests. He and E. Pearson also discredit the myth that the former is only allowed to report pre-data, fixed error probabilities, and are […]

## Calling Python from Mathematica

The Mathematica function ExternalEvalute lets you call Python from Mathematica. However, there are a few wrinkles. I first pasted in an example from the Mathematica documentation and it failed. ExternalEvaluate[ “Python”, {“def f(x): return x**2”, “f(3)”} ] It turns out you (may) have to tell Mathematica where to find Python. I ran the following, tried […]

## holistic framework for ABC

An AISTATS 2019 paper was recently arXived by Kelvin Hsu and Fabio Ramos. Proposing an ABC method “…consisting of (1) a consistent surrogate likelihood model that modularizes queries from simulation calls, (2) a Bayesian learning objective for hyperparameters that improves inference accuracy, and (3) a posterior surrogate density and a super-sampling inference algorithm using its […]

## Lessons about statistics and research methods from that racial attitudes example

Yesterday we shared some discussions of recent survey results on racial attitudes. For students and teachers of statistics or research methods, I think the key takeaway should be that you don’t want to pull out just one number from a survey; you want to get the big picture by looking at multiple questions, multiple years, […]

## Neyman vs the ‘Inferential’ Probabilists

We celebrated Jerzy Neyman’s Birthday (April 16, 1894) last night in our seminar: here’s a pic of the cake. My entry today is a brief excerpt and a link to a paper of his that we haven’t discussed much on this blog: Neyman, J. (1962), ‘Two Breakthroughs in the Theory of Statistical Decision Making‘ [i] […]

## “Sometimes all we have left are pictures and fear”: Dan Simpson talk in Columbia stat dept, 4pm Monday

4:10pm Monday, April 22 in Social Work Bldg room 903: Data is getting weirder. Statistical models and techniques are more complex than they have ever been. No one understand what code does. But at the same time, statistical tools are being used by a wider range of people than at any time in the past. […]

## A Comparative Review of the JASP Statistical Software

JASP is a free and open source statistics package that targets beginners looking to point-and-click their way through analyses. This article is one of a series of reviews which aim to help non-programmers choose the Graphical User Interface (GUI) for R, which best meets their needs. Continue reading →

## Le Monde puzzle [#1092]

A Latin square Le Monde mathematical puzzle that I found rather dreary: A hidden 3×3 board contains all numbers from 1 to 9. Anselm wants to guess the board and makes two proposals. Berenicke tells him how many entries are in the right rows and colums for each proposal, along with the information that no […]

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

My second Jerzy Neyman item, in honor of his birthday, is a little play that I wrote for Statistical Inference as Severe Testing: How to Get Beyond the Statistics Wars (2018): 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 […]

## heart of Paris

## Changing racial differences in attitudes on changing racial differences

Elin Waring writes: Have you been following the release of GSS results this year? I had been vaguely aware that there was reporting on a few items but then I happened to run the natrace and natracey variables (I use these in my class to look at question wording), they are from the are we […]

## Tukey, Design Thinking, and Better Questions

Roughly once a year, I read John Tukey’s paper “The Future of Data Analysis”, originally published in 1962 in the Annals of Mathematical Statistics. I’ve been doing this for the past 17 years, each time hoping to really understand what it was he was ta…

## bandits for doubly intractable posteriors

Last Friday, Guanyang Wang arXived a paper on the use of multi-armed bandits (hence the reference to the three bandits) to handle intractable normalising constants. The bandit compares or mixes Møller et al. (2006) auxiliary variable solution with Murray et al. (2006) exchange algorithm. Which are both special cases of pseudo-marginal MCMC algorithms. In both […]