Visual Math Gone Wrong

December 27, 2012
By
Visual Math Gone Wrong

Data visualization is often used to just display data, with little thought put into supporting visual thinking. Giving people tools to do some visual math is a good idea; the visual properties need to be picked carefully however, to make this work. The following example is from the Census Data Visualization Gallery. Like many of the other visualizations there, it shows some good thinking but ultimately fails to do what…

Read more »

English donuts rival Spanish donuts

December 26, 2012
By
English donuts rival Spanish donuts

On my holiday travel, I found a disguised donut chart in the Delta Sky Magazine (Dec 2010), talking about manufacturing jobs in the U.S. Then, flipping through the Spanish section at the back of the same magazine, I found the...

Read more »

What do people do wrong? WSJ columnist is looking for examples!

December 26, 2012
By

Carl Bialik of the Wall Street Journal writes: I’m working on a column this week about numerical/statistical tips and resolutions for writers and people in other fields in the new year. 2013 is the International Year of Statistics, so I’d like to offer some ways to better grapple with statistics in the year ahead. Here’s [...]

Read more »

What do people do wrong? WSJ columnist is looking for examples!

December 26, 2012
By

Carl Bialik of the Wall Street Journal writes: I’m working on a column this week about numerical/statistical tips and resolutions for writers and people in other fields in the new year. 2013 is the International Year of Statistics, so I’d like to offer some ways to better grapple with statistics in the year ahead. Here’s [...]

Read more »

Wrapper functions in GNU R

December 26, 2012
By

Recently I have been working with GNU R optimization routines a lot. Function optim has a nice trace option that allows to monitor optimization progress. Another standard function optimize has no such feature but it is pos...

Read more »

Impersonators

December 26, 2012
By

This story of a Cindy Sherman impersonator reminded me of some graffiti I saw in a bathroom of the Whitney Museum many years ago. My friend Kenny and I had gone there for the Biennial which had an exhibit featuring Keith Haring and others of the neo-taggers (or whatever they were called). The bathroom walls [...]

Read more »

Common words in the Gathering Storm

December 25, 2012
By
Common words in the Gathering Storm

The Wheel of Time is a series of books started by Robert Jordan. Unfortunately he died too early. Like all fans of the series I feel very lucky that Brandon Sanderson was able to continue these books. The first book Sanderson wrote was the Gathering St...

Read more »

Merry Christmas! ….or Happy Tuesday!

December 25, 2012
By

Merry Christmas! If you don't celebrate Christmas, Happy Tuesday! I hope everyone's holidays are wonderful.

Read more »

13 well-worn criticisms of significance tests (and how to avoid them)

December 24, 2012
By
13 well-worn criticisms of significance tests (and how to avoid them)

2013 is right around the corner, and here are 13 well-known criticisms of statistical significance tests, and how they are addressed within the error statistical philosophy, as discussed in Mayo, D. G. and Spanos, A. (2011) “Error Statistics“.  (#1) error statistical tools forbid using any background knowledge.  (#2) All statistically significant results are treated the same. [...]

Read more »

Make a Christmas Tree in R with random ornaments/presents

December 24, 2012
By
Make a Christmas Tree in R with random ornaments/presents

Happy holidays!     Link to Gist

Read more »

Textbook for data visualization?

December 24, 2012
By

Dave Choi writes: I’m building a course called “Exploring and visualizing data,” for Heinz college in Carnegie Mellon (public policy and information systems). Do you know any books that might be good for such a course? I’m hoping to get non-statisticians to appreciate the statistician’s point of view on this subject. I immediately thought of [...]

Read more »

Miles of iles

December 24, 2012
By
Miles of iles

An explanation of quartiles, quintiles deciles, and boxplots. Previously “Again with variability of long-short decile tests” and its predecessor discusses using deciles but doesn’t say what they are. The *iles These are concepts that have to do with approximately equally sized groups created from sorted data. There are 4 groups with quartiles, 5 with quintiles … Continue reading →

Read more »

Identical Champions League Draw: What Were the Odds?

December 24, 2012
By
Identical Champions League Draw: What Were the Odds?

A number of news outlets have reported a peculiar quirk that arose during Friday’s Champions League draw. Apparently, the sport’s European governing body, UEFA, ran a trial run the day before the main event, and the schedule chosen during this event was identical to that of the actual draw on Friday. Given this strange coincidence, […]

Read more »

Brief Thoughts on Data Entry: Excel Should Not to Be Used

December 24, 2012
By

Over the years I have worked with many people who do the field work to collect data. They have their process and it works for them. However, their work rarely extends beyond data collection. This often means data is collected in Excel. If an observation meets a specific criterion then they are colored yellow, another [...]

Read more »

Brief Thoughts on Data Entry: Excel Should Not to Be Used

December 24, 2012
By

Over the years I have worked with many people who do the field work to collect data. They have their process and it works for them. However, their work rarely extends beyond data collection. This often means data is collected in Excel. If an observation meets a specific criterion then they are colored yellow, another [...]

Read more »

My R year

December 24, 2012
By
My R year

End-of-year posts are corny but, what the heck, I think I can let myself delve in to corniness once a year. The following code gives a snapshot of what and how was R for me in 2012. outside.packages.2012 <- list(used.the.most = c('asreml', 'ggplot2'), largest.use.decline = c('MASS', 'lattice'), same.use = c('MCMCglmm', 'lme4'), would.like.use.more = 'JAGS')   […]

Read more »

Sunday data/statistics link roundup 12/23/12

December 23, 2012
By

A cool data visualization for blood glucose levels for diabetic individuals. This kind of interactive visualization can help people see where/when major health issues arise for chronic diseases. This was a class project by Jeff Heer’s Stanford CS448B students Ben Rudolph … Continue reading →

Read more »

Peter Bartlett on model complexity and sample size

December 23, 2012
By

Zach Shahn saw this and writes: I just heard a talk by Peter Bartlett about model selection in “unlimited” data situations that essentially addresses this curve. He talks about the problem of model selection given a computational budget (rather than given a sample size). You can either use your computational budget to get more data [...]

Read more »

Visualizing Principal Components

December 22, 2012
By
Visualizing Principal Components

Principal Component Analysis (PCA) is a procedure that converts observations into linearly uncorrelated variables called principal components (Wikipedia). The PCA is a useful descriptive tool to examine your data. Today I will show how to find and visualize Principal Components. Let’s look at the components of the Dow Jones Industrial Average index over 2012. First, [...]

Read more »

Get the party started

December 22, 2012
By

Have you already used trees or random forests to model a relationship of a response and some covariates? Then you might like the condtional trees, which are implemented in the party package.In difference to the CART (Classification and Regression ...

Read more »

More Pinker Pinker Pinker

December 22, 2012
By

After I posted this recent comment on a blog of Steven Pinker (see also here), we had the following exchange. I’m reposting it here (with Pinker’s agreement) not because we achieved any deep insights but because I thought it useful to reveal to people that so-called experts such as us are not so clear on [...]

Read more »

Another reason to use JAGS instead of BUGS

December 21, 2012
By
Another reason to use JAGS instead of BUGS

BUGS is the pioneering software that made MCMC available to so many of us, but it has some problems with robustness that are not suffered by the subsequent software JAGS. Readers of DBDA tell me of some new problems running models in BUGS, which I have...

Read more »

R for inquisition

December 21, 2012
By
R for inquisition

A post on high-dimensional arrays by @isomorphisms reminded me of APL and, more generally, of matrix languages, which took me back to inquisitive computing: computing not in the sense of software engineering, or databases, or formats, but of learning by poking problems through a computer. I like languages not because I can get a job [...]

Read more »


Subscribe

Email:

  Subscribe