On deck for the rest of the summer and beginning of fall

July 20, 2015
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Here’s some summer reading for you. The schedule may change because of the insertion of topical material, but this is the basic plan: Richard Feynman and the tyranny of measurement A bad definition of statistical significance from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Effective Health Care Program Ta-Nehisi Coates, David Brooks, and the […] The post On deck for the rest of the summer and beginning of fall…

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It is possible to not learn real causes from some A/B tests

July 20, 2015
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It is conventional wisdom that A/B testing (or in proper terms, randomized controlled experiments) is the gold standard for causal analysis, meaning if you run an A/B test, you know what caused an effect. In practice, this is not always true. Sometimes, the A/B test only provides a statistical understanding of causes but not an average Joe's understanding. Let's start with a hypothetical example in which both definitions are aligned.…

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Create a density curve with shaded tails

July 20, 2015
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Create a density curve with shaded tails

A SAS programmer wanted to plot the normal distribution and highlight the area under curve that corresponds to the tails of the distribution. For example, the following plot shows the lower decile shaded in blue and the upper decile shaded in red. An easy way to do this in SAS […] The post Create a density curve with shaded tails appeared first on The DO Loop.

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Introducing Ben Connault

July 20, 2015
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I should introduce Benjamin ("Ben") Connault, Penn's newly-hired young econometrician, arriving from Princeton any day now. We're extremely grateful to Bo Honoré, Ulrich Müller, Andriy Norets, and Chris Sims for sending him our way.Fra...

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MCMskv, Lenzerheide, 4-7 Jan., 2016 [news #1]

July 19, 2015
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MCMskv, Lenzerheide, 4-7 Jan., 2016 [news #1]

The BayesComp MCMski V [or MCMskv for short] has now its official website, once again maintained by Merrill Lietchy from Drexel University, Philadelphia, and registration is even open! The call for contributed sessions is now over, while the call for posters remains open until the very end. The novelty from the previous post is that there […]

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“17 Baby Names You Didn’t Know Were Totally Made Up”

July 19, 2015
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From Laura Wattenberg: Want to drive the baby-naming public up the wall? Tell them you’re naming your daughter Renesmee. Author Stephenie Meyer invented the name for the half-vampire child in her wildly popular Twilight series. In the story it’s simply an homage to the child’s two grandmothers, Renee and Esmé. To the traditional-minded, though, Renesmee […] The post “17 Baby Names You Didn’t Know Were Totally Made Up” appeared first…

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Predicting Titanic deaths on Kaggle

July 19, 2015
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Predicting Titanic deaths on Kaggle

Kaggle has a competition to predict who will die on the famous Titanic 'Machine Learning from Disaster''. It is placed as knowledge competition. Just up there to learn. I am late to the party, it has been been for 1 1/2 year, to end by end 2015. It is ...

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Lauryn’s back!

July 19, 2015
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Really, no snark here. She’s got some excellent tracks on the new Nina Simone tribute album. The best part’s the sample from the classic Nina song. But that’s often the case. They wouldn’t sample something if it was no good. P.S. Let me clarify: I prefer Lauryn’s version to Nina’s original. The best parts of […] The post Lauryn’s back! appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.

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Annals of Spam

July 18, 2015
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I received the following email with subject line, “Andrew, just finished ‘Foreign language skills …'”: Andrew, Just finished http://andrewgelman.com/2010/12/24/foreign_languag/ This leads to the silliness of considering foreign language skills as a purely positional good or as a method for selecting students, while forgetting the direct benefits of being able to communicate in various ways with […] The post Annals of Spam appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social…

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The mathematics of love

July 17, 2015
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I can't remember how I came across this (I think I saw an article about it on Metro or something), but I got intrigued by Hannah Fry's work on "The mathematics of love". So I bought the book and read it $-$ it's a fairly easy read, so I got throug...

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The statistics department Moneyball opportunity

July 17, 2015
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The statistics department Moneyball opportunity

Moneyball is a book and a movie about Billy Bean. It makes statisticians look awesome and I loved the movie. I loved it so much I’m putting the movie trailer right here: The basic idea behind Moneyball was that the Oakland Athletics were able to build a very successful baseball team on a tight budget by valuing

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Measurement is part of design

July 17, 2015
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The other day, in the context of a discussion of an article from 1972, I remarked that the great statistician William Cochran, when writing on observational studies, wrote almost nothing about causality, nor did he mention selection or meta-analysis. It was interesting that these topics, which are central to any modern discussion of observational studies, […] The post Measurement is part of design appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference,…

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Incomprehensible, and even insidious

July 17, 2015
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Incomprehensible, and even insidious

A reader Alex V. nominated this chart as one of the most incomprehensible ever: This comes from the Annual Report 2014 of Allison Transmission. I applaud the fact that they obviously spent time making the charts. This is not something...

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Visualizing the distribution of ACT scores

July 17, 2015
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Visualizing the distribution of ACT scores

My son is in high school and plans to take the ACT, a standardized test to assess college aptitude and readiness. My wife asked, "What is a good score for the ACT?" I didn't know, but I did a quick internet search and discovered a tabulation of scores for the […] The post Visualizing the distribution of ACT scores appeared first on The DO Loop.

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Prior exposure workshops 3 and 4 (Bayesian data analysis for social scientists)

July 17, 2015
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Prior exposure workshops 3 and 4 (Bayesian data analysis for social scientists)

Booking is now open for workshops three and four of our Prior Exposure Bayesian data analysis training (all taking place in Nottingham). The dates are 22 and 23 September 2015.These follow on from the first two workshops but if you have some training i...

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“Statistical Significance” According to the U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services (ii)

July 17, 2015
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“Statistical Significance” According to the U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services (ii)

Someone linked this to me on Twitter. I thought it was a home blog at first. Surely the U.S. Dept of Health and Human Services can give a better definition than this. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Effective Health Care Program Glossary of Terms We know that many of the concepts used on this […]

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Stan is Turing complete

July 17, 2015
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Stan is Turing complete. The post Stan is Turing complete appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.

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Questions About the Size and Power of a Test

July 16, 2015
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Questions About the Size and Power of a Test

Osman, a reader of this blog, sent a comment in relation to my recent post on the effects of temporal aggregation on t-tests, and the like. Rather than just bury it, with a short response, in the "Comments" section of that post, I thought I'd give it p...

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New papers on LOO/WAIC and Stan

July 16, 2015
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New papers on LOO/WAIC and Stan

Aki, Jonah, and I have released the much-discussed paper on LOO and WAIC in Stan: Efficient implementation of leave-one-out cross-validation and WAIC for evaluating fitted Bayesian models. We (that is, Aki) now recommend LOO rather than WAIC, especially now that we have an R function to quickly compute LOO using Pareto smoothed importance sampling. In […] The post New papers on LOO/WAIC and Stan appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal…

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Our short course

July 16, 2015
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We've opened officially registration for our short course on Bayesian methods in health economics (this is a link to last year's edition, with a little more information than the official webpage for this year's course). When we decided to do this, we a...

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Murphy diagrams in R

July 16, 2015
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Murphy diagrams in R

At the recent International Symposium on Forecasting, held in Riverside, California, Tillman Gneiting gave a great talk on “Evaluating forecasts: why proper scoring rules and consistent scoring functions matter”. It will be the subject of an IJF invited paper in due course. One of the things he talked about was the “Murphy diagram” for comparing forecasts, […]

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Hello world!

July 16, 2015
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Welcome to WordPress. This is your first post. Edit or delete it, then start blogging!

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Psych dept: “We are especially interested in candidates whose research program contributes to the development of new quantitative methods”

July 16, 2015
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This is cool. The #1 psychology department in the world is looking for a quantitative researcher: The Department of Psychology at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, invites applications for a tenure-track faculty position. The expected start date is September 1, 2016. The primary criterion for appointment is excellence in research and teaching. We are […] The post Psych dept: “We are especially interested in candidates whose research program contributes…

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