How I decide when to trust an R package

November 6, 2015
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How I decide when to trust an R package

One thing that I've given a lot of thought to recently is the process that I use to decide whether I trust an R package or not. Kasper Hansen took a break from trolling me on Twitter to talk about how he trusts packages on Github less than packages that are on CRAN and particularly Bioconductor.

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Correcting statistical biases in “Rising morbidity and mortality in midlife among white non-Hispanic Americans in the 21st century”: We need to adjust for the increase in average age of people in the 45-54 category

November 6, 2015
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Correcting statistical biases in “Rising morbidity and mortality in midlife among white non-Hispanic Americans in the 21st century”:  We need to adjust for the increase in average age of people in the 45-54 category

In a much-noticed paper, Anne Case and Angus Deaton write: This paper documents a marked increase in the all-cause mortality of middle-aged white non-Hispanic men and women in the United States between 1999 and 2013. This change reversed decades of progress in mortality and was unique to the United States; no other rich country saw […] The post Correcting statistical biases in “Rising morbidity and mortality in midlife among white…

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4 for 4.0 — The Latest JAGS

November 6, 2015
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This post is by Bob Carpenter. I just saw over on Martyn Plummer’s JAGS News blog that JAGS 4.0 is out. Martyn provided a series of blog posts highlighting the new features: 1. Reproducibility: Examples will now be fully reproducible draw-for-draw and chain-for-chain with the same seed. (Of course, compiler, optimization level, platform, CPU, and […] The post 4 for 4.0 — The Latest JAGS appeared first on Statistical Modeling,…

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Jobs at Monash University

November 6, 2015
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Jobs at Monash University

We have two new continuing positions currently being advertised in our department: for lecturer and senior lecturer. Details are on the Monash website. (For those in North America, a lecturer is equivalent to your assistant professor, and a senior lecturer is equivalent to your associate professor. See the Wikipedia article on Australian academic ranks for […]

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S. McKinney: On Efron’s “Frequentist Accuracy of Bayesian Estimates” (Guest Post)

November 6, 2015
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S. McKinney: On Efron’s “Frequentist Accuracy of Bayesian Estimates” (Guest Post)

Steven McKinney, Ph.D. Statistician Molecular Oncology and Breast Cancer Program British Columbia Cancer Research Centre                      On Bradley Efron’s: “Frequentist Accuracy of Bayesian Estimates” Bradley Efron has produced another fine set of results, yielding a valuable estimate of variability for a Bayesian estimate derived from a Markov Chain Monte Carlo algorithm, in his latest paper […]

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A Bayesian Model to Calculate Whether My Wife is Pregnant or Not

November 6, 2015
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A Bayesian Model to Calculate Whether My Wife is Pregnant or Not

On the 21st of February, 2015, my wife had not had her period for 33 days, and as we were trying to conceive, this was good news! An average period is around a month, and if you are a couple trying to go triple, then a missing period is a good sign s...

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Why Retraction Watch remains necessary

November 5, 2015
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Why Retraction Watch remains necessary

A few months ago Psych Science issued a press release, “Blue and Seeing Blue: Sadness May Impair Color Perception,” promoting a fatally flawed paper that appeared in their journal. I heard about this paper from Nick Brown, and we slammed it on the blog. As I wrote at the time, I have nothing against the […] The post Why Retraction Watch remains necessary appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference,…

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Econometrics: Instrument locally, extrapolate globally

November 5, 2015
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Rajeev Dehejia sends along two papers, one with James Bisbee, Cristian Pop-Eleches, and Cyrus Samii on extrapolating estimated local average treatment effects to new settings, and one with Cristian Pop-Eleches and Cyrus Samii on external validity in na...

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VIS Proceedings now in the January Issue of TVCG

November 5, 2015
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VIS Proceedings now in the January Issue of TVCG

There has been a change in the way papers presented at IEEE VIS are published in the TVCG journal. It used to be the last issue of the year, but starting in 2015, it’s now the January issue of the next year. So all VIS 2015 papers have a publication date of 2016. This change has not … Continue reading VIS Proceedings now in the January Issue of TVCG

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Hey—looky here! This business wants to hire a Stan expert for decision making.

November 4, 2015
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Hey—looky here!  This business wants to hire a Stan expert for decision making.

Kevin Van Horn writes: I currently work in a business analytics group at Symantec, and we have several positions to fill. I’d like at least one of those positions to be filled by someone who understands Bayesian modeling and is comfortable using R (or Python) and Stan (or other MCMC tools). The team’s purpose is […] The post Hey—looky here! This business wants to hire a Stan expert for decision…

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Potato Chips and ANOVA in Analytical Chemistry – Part 1: Formatting Data in JMP

Potato Chips and ANOVA in Analytical Chemistry – Part 1: Formatting Data in JMP

I am very excited to write again for the official JMP blog as a guest blogger!  Today, the first article of a 2-part series has been published, and it is called “Potato Chips and ANOVA in Analytical Chemistry – Part 1: Formatting Data in JMP“.  This series of blog posts will talk about analysis of […]

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Skin in the game for observational studies

November 4, 2015
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The article Deming, data and observational studies by S. Stanley Young and Alan Karr opens with Any claim coming from an observational study is most likely to be wrong. They back up this assertion with data about observational studies later contradicted by prospective studies. Much has been said lately about the assertion that most published results are false, particularly […]

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The tabloids strike again

November 4, 2015
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Under the heading, “Unlearning implicit social biases during sleep,” Nick Brown writes: What do you make of this? At first sight I’m unimpressed; it looks like just another glamour journal fluff piece. For example, it seems to me that Figure 1F commits the error described here; and the authors seem to ignore the large increase […] The post The tabloids strike again appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and…

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Trap and cap: Avoid division-by-zero and domain errors when evaluating functions

November 4, 2015
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Trap and cap: Avoid division-by-zero and domain errors when evaluating functions

Statistical programmers often need to evaluate complicated expressions that contain square roots, logarithms, and other functions whose domain is restricted. Similarly, you might need to evaluate a rational expression in which the denominator of the expression can be zero. In these cases, it is important to avoid evaluating a function […] The post Trap and cap: Avoid division-by-zero and domain errors when evaluating functions appeared first on The DO Loop.

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“Another reminder that David Brooks is very good at being David Brooks”

November 4, 2015
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Outsourcing this one to Palko. The post “Another reminder that David Brooks is very good at being David Brooks” appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.

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Neuroscience research in Baltimore

November 4, 2015
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Joshua Vogelstein sends along these ads for students, research associates, and postdocs in his lab at Johns Hopkins University: Our goal is to work together with neuroexperimentalists to discover fundamental principles governing the relationship between mind and brain, via building and deploying open source petascale tools that run at scale on open access data. This […] The post Neuroscience research in Baltimore appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and…

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Course Announcement: 36-401, Modern Regression, Fall 2015

November 4, 2015
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For the first time, I will be teaching a section of the course which is the pre-requisite for my spring advanced data analysis class. This is an introduction to linear regression modeling for our third-year undergrads, and others from related majors;...

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Books to Read While the Algae Grow in Your Fur, June 2015

November 4, 2015
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Attention conservation notice: I have no taste. Walter Jon Williams, Brig of War Mind candy historical adventure fiction: a tale of derring-do and angst in the nascent American navy during the war of 1812. It was written before Williams turned to s...

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On the Nature of Things Humanity Was Not Meant to Know

November 4, 2015
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Attention conservation notice: A ponderous, scholastic joke, which could only hope to be amusing to those who combine a geeky enthusiasm for over-written horror stories from the early 20th century with nerdy enthusiasm for truly ancient books. I wish...

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Housekeeping Notes

November 4, 2015
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Blogging will remain sparse while I teach, finish the book, write grant proposals, try not to screw up being involved in a faculty search, do all the REDACTED BECAUSE PRIVATE things, and dream about research. In the meanwhile: A Twitter account, ope...

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Kriging in Perspective (Teaching outtakes)

November 4, 2015
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Attention conservation notice: 11 pages of textbook out-take on statistical methods, either painfully obvious or completely unintelligible. I wrote up some notes on kriging for use in the regression class, but eventually decided teaching that and co...

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Apply! (The Call to Pittsburgh)

November 4, 2015
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The CMU Statistics Department is conducting two faculty searches, one for teaching-track and one for tenure-track faculty, and I find myself on the search committee. (This feels extra bizarre because I could swear I just came here about two years ago...

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Statbusters: Games people play with the placebo effect

November 3, 2015
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In the first two chapters of Numbersense, I discuss how people game statistics, and why gaming is inevitable. I have also written about the placebo effect before. Another article has appeared covering the same topic -- the industry doesn't like the fact that more and more drugs fail to clear the "placebo" hurdle; and the industry thinks the problem is that the placebo effect is mysteriously increasing over time. What…

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