Statistical distribution of incomes in different countries, and a great plot

October 30, 2014
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This post is by Phil Price. This article in the New York Times is pretty good, and the graphics are excellent…especially the interactive graphic halfway down, entitled “American Incomes Are Losing Their Edge, Except at the Top” (try mousing over the gray lines and see what happens). The plot attempts to display the statistical distribution […] The post Statistical distribution of incomes in different countries, and a great plot appeared…

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"Football"… I mean "soccer"… I mean "football"…

October 29, 2014
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A couple of weeks ago, I was contacted by Daniel Weitzenfeld $-$ a Chicago freelance data scientist (his own definition). Daniel got interested in modelling sports results and googled our football paper $-$ in his post here, he jokes that, be...

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Econometrics Term Test

October 29, 2014
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Econometrics Term Test

A few days ago the students in my introductory graduate Econometrics course had their mid-term test.Here's the test, and a brief solution.How did you fare?© 2014, David E. Giles

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Improved graphs of car crash stats

October 29, 2014
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Improved graphs of car crash stats

Last week, Mona Chalabi wrote an interesting post on car crash statistics by state, at fivethirtyeight.com. I didn’t like the figures so much, though. There were a number of them like this: I’m giving a talk today about data visualization [slides | github], and I thought this would make a good example, so I spent […]

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I love it when I can respond to a question with a single link

October 29, 2014
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Shira writes: This came up from trying to help a colleague of mine at Human Rights Watch. He has several completely observed variables X, and a variable with 29% missing, Y. He wants a histogram (and other descriptive statistics) of a “filled in” Y. He can regress Y on X, and impute missing Y’s from […] The post I love it when I can respond to a question with a…

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How to use frequency analysis to crack the Cryptoquote puzzle

October 29, 2014
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How to use frequency analysis to crack the Cryptoquote puzzle

Many people enjoy solving word games such as the daily Cryptoquote puzzle, which uses a simple substitution cipher to disguise a witty or wise quote by a famous person. A common way to attack the puzzle is frequency analysis. In frequency analysis you identify letters and pairs of letters (bigrams) […]

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Calculating the sum or mean of a numeric (continuous) variable by a group (categorical) variable in SAS

Calculating the sum or mean of a numeric (continuous) variable by a group (categorical) variable in SAS

Introduction A common task in data analysis and statistics is to calculate the sum or mean of a continuous variable.  If that variable can be categorized into 2 or more classes, you may want to get the sum or mean for each class. This sounds like a simple task, yet I took a surprisingly long time […]

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Would You Like Some Hot Potatoes?

October 29, 2014
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Would You Like Some Hot Potatoes?

O.K., I know - that was a really cheap way of getting your attention.However, it worked, and this post really is about Hot Potatoes - not the edible variety, but some teaching apps. from "Half-Baked Software" here at the University of Victoria.To quote...

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Body-slam on the sister blog

October 29, 2014
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John Ahlquist and Scott Gehlbach nail it. The post Body-slam on the sister blog appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.

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reliable ABC model choice via random forests

October 28, 2014
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reliable ABC model choice via random forests

After a somewhat prolonged labour (!), we have at last completed our paper on ABC model choice with random forests and submitted it to PNAS for possible publication. While the paper is entirely methodological, the primary domain of application of ABC model choice methods remains population genetics and the diffusion of this new methodology to […]

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Why I support statisticians and their resistance to hype

October 28, 2014
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Despite Statistics being the most mature data related discipline, statisticians have not fared well in terms of being selected for funding or leadership positions in the new initiatives brought about by the increasing interest in data. Just to give one example (Jeff and Terry Speed give many more) the White House Big Data Partners Workshop  had

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Yes, I’ll help people for free but not like this!

October 28, 2014
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I received the following (unsolicited) email: Dear Sir or Madam, My name is **; I am a graduate student, working on my thesis in **. A vital part of my research is performing a joint cluster analysis of attributional and relational data on **. I have tried to collaborate with the statisticians at ** and […] The post Yes, I’ll help people for free but not like this! appeared first…

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Misguided warheads in the classroom

October 28, 2014
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Misguided warheads in the classroom

Alberto Cairo just gave a wonderful talk to my workshop, in which he complains about the state of dataviz teaching. So, it's quite opportune that reader Maja Z. sent in a couple of examples from a recent course on data...

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Blue Bonnet Bayes

October 28, 2014
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Blue Bonnet Bayes

-+*Blue Bonnet™ used to run commercials with the jingle “Everything’s better with Blue Bonnet on it.” Maybe they still do. Perhaps in reaction to knee-jerk antipathy toward Bayesian methods, some statisticians have adopted knee-jerk enthusiasm for Bayesian methods. Everything’s better with Bayesian analysis on it. Bayes makes it better, like a little dab of margarine […]

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It is the small data that matters the most

October 28, 2014
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It is the small data that matters the most

Everyone is talking about Big Data1, but it is the small data that is holding everything together. The small slowly changing reference tables are the linchpins. Unfortunately, too often politics gets in the way as those small tables, maintained by huma...

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And sometimes they don’t spam you at all

October 28, 2014
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I received the following email: Dear Dr. Gelman, As a way of introduction, my name is . . . and I am very interested in studying in Columbia’s PhD statistics program. For the past 2 ½ years, I’ve worked as an analyst for . . . I am writing to communicate my interest in your […] The post And sometimes they don’t spam you at all appeared first on Statistical…

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ISPOR posters

October 27, 2014
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ISPOR posters

As the short course is fast approaching and I'm fighting with the last organisational details, I spent most of today preparing the two posters for the ISPOR congress, which I'm attending the week after next.At first, I was a bit disappointed that none ...

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2 on chess

October 27, 2014
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2 on chess

Is it really “often easier to win a rematch than to defend a championship”? The quoted bit above comes from Tyler Cowen, writing about the Anand/Carlsen world championship rematch. I’m still not used to the idea of a new world championship match every year but I guess why not? Anyway, here’s my question. Tyler Cowen […] The post 2 on chess appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social…

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On deck this week

October 27, 2014
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Mon: 2 on chess Tues: Yes, I’ll help people for free but not like this! Wed: I love it when I can respond to a question with a single link Thurs: Sokal: “science is not merely a bag of clever tricks . . . Rather, the natural sciences are nothing more or less than one […] The post On deck this week appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and…

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Ebola in Liberia could be different than Ebola in New Jersey

October 27, 2014
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Ebola in Liberia could be different than Ebola in New Jersey

The Ebola outbreak in Western Africa has initiated panic throughout the world. Thirty-seven countries so far have implemented policies to restrict the international spread of Ebola. In the United States, governor Chris Christie has initiated additional...

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Video: Using heat maps to visualize matrices

October 27, 2014
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Video: Using heat maps to visualize matrices

One of my presentations at SAS Global Forum 2014 was about the new heat map functions in SAS/IML 13.1. Over the summer I created a short video of my presentation, which gives an overview of visualizing matrices with heat maps, and describes how to choose colors for heat maps: If […]

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Probable Points and Credible Intervals, Part 1

October 26, 2014
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Probable Points and Credible Intervals, Part 1

After having broken the Bayesian eggs and prepared your model in your statistical kitchen the main dish is the posterior. The posterior is the posterior is the posterior, given the model and the data it contains all the information you need and anyth...

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Combating Multicollinearity by Asking the Right Questions and Uncovering Latent Features

October 26, 2014
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Combating Multicollinearity  by Asking the Right Questions and Uncovering Latent Features

Overview. When responding to questions about brand perceptions or product feature satisfaction, consumers construct a rating  by relying on their overall satisfaction with the brand or product plus some general category knowledge of how diffi...

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