Posts Tagged ‘ data ’

General statistical education is an utter failure

July 23, 2014
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As if we need more evidence. The statistics community loves to think of our subject as highly practical and relevant to the general population. And this is true. The average person has a poor grasp of basic statistical thinking, even if he or she has taken one or more statistics courses. This is true, yet many in our community are in denial. Chapter 1 of Numbers Rule Your World deals…

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Revisiting the home run data

July 21, 2014
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Revisiting the home run data

Note to New York metro readers: I'm an invited speaker at NYU's "Art and Science of Brand Storytelling" summer course which starts tomorrow. I will be speaking on Thursday, 12-1 pm. You can still register here. *** The home run...

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Digital journalism has an archiving challenge

July 18, 2014
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While making slides for a presentation, I wanted to scan a chart from the paper copy of the Wall Street Journal. This was a chart from several years ago, and I can't find it online. I went to the NYU Library, expecting this to be an easy task. Find the bound copies of the paper, or the microfiche, right? Nope. Apparently, we are in the digital age now. This means…

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Around the blogosphere

July 10, 2014
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A number of folks have reacted to various blogs and talks I have recently given. I'm glad that my writing has inspired others, and I recommend reading these wonderful responses. *** Diane Ravitch, the eminent scholar of New York education and author of several great books, found my 2011 post about Bill Gates's view of education. Here is her reaction: How refreshing to know that statisticians like Kaiser Fung are…

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A small step for interactivity

July 9, 2014
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A small step for interactivity

Alberto links to a nice Propublica chart on average annual spend per dialysis patient on ambulances by state. (link to chart and article) It's a nice small-multiples setup with two tabs, one showing the states in order of descending spend...

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The Facebook experiment controversy

July 1, 2014
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Facebook data scientists are being blasted for a social psychology experiment they ran in 2012 in which they varied the amount of positive/negative content exposed to users in newsfeeds and measured whether this affected the positive/negative content posted by those users. (link to WSJ report; link to paper) I'm perplexed by the reaction. Boing Boing's Cory Doctorow calls it "likely illegal", who links to James Grimmelmann, a law professor. Slate…

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Respect the reader’s time

June 25, 2014
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Respect the reader’s time

A graphic illustrating how Americans spend their time is a perfect foil to make the important case that the reader's time is a scarce resource. I wrote about this at the ASA forum in 2011 (link). In the same WSJ...

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Binge Reading Gelman

June 23, 2014
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Binge Reading Gelman

As others binge watch Netflix TV, I binge read Gelman posts, while riding a train with no wifi and a dying laptop battery. (This entry was written two weeks ago.) Andrew Gelman is statistics’ most prolific blogger. Gelman-binging has become a necessity since I have not managed to keep up with his accelerated posting schedule. Earlier this year, he began publishing previews of future posts, one week in advance, and…

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A great visual of complicated schedules

June 16, 2014
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A great visual of complicated schedules

Reader Joe D. tipped me about a nice visualization project by a pair of grad students at WPI (link). They displayed data about the Boston subway system (i.e. the T). The project has many components, one of which is the...

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What the DST researchers actually found

June 16, 2014
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What the DST researchers actually found

To add to my prior post, having now read the published paper on the effect of DST on heart attacks, I can confirm that I disagree with the way the publicist hired by the journal messaged the research conclusion. And some of the fault lies with the researchers themselves who appear to have encouraged the exaggerated claim. Here is the summary of the research as written up by the researchers…

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