Posts Tagged ‘ decision-making ’

Q&A with NBA Hackathon winner

October 2, 2017
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Q&A with NBA Hackathon winner

After the NBA Hackathon (see report here), I caught up with the winning team in the business analytics competition, DataBucket, composed of Barbara Zhan and Harold Li. Junkcharts: Congratulations for winning the business analytics competition at the NBA Hackathon. As a judge, I was very impressed by how much work you were able to do in 24 hours. Did you sleep or did you work all the way through? DataBucket:…

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Time to dust off my digital marketing talks

September 14, 2017
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Time to dust off my digital marketing talks

Kaiser Fung, founder of Principal Analytics Prep, discusses effectiveness of branded keywords on Google. How accountable is digital advertising? Not as much as you think

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Surge protectors as teaching tools

September 12, 2017
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Kaiser Fung, founder of Principal Analytics Prep, considers using surge protectors as an example for teaching probability and statistics.

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Naive analysis is naive: debate about college admissions

August 24, 2017
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Naive analysis is naive: debate about college admissions

Kaiser Fung, author of Numbers Rule Your World and founder of Principal Analytics Prep, discusses why naive analysis of data hurts the debate over affirmative action.

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If you are using Facebook Ads split testing (A/B testing), stop fooling yourself

July 26, 2017
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Kaiser Fung, founder of Principal Analytics Prep, and former director of Applied Analytics at Columbia University, explains why you can't run proper A/B tests on Facebook

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That fake news business

May 4, 2017
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When Hillary Clinton unexpectedly lost the election in November 2016, it was high time for pundits to espouse their pet theories for the shocking losses suffered by the Democrats at all levels of government. The usual suspects were put on parade, such as “Bernie Bros” who abstained from voting and the “deplorables” who voted against their own interests. For the first time, two unlikely entities faced scrutiny: the social-media giant,…

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Ramp metering magic

May 1, 2017
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Here is a recent article giving some history on the invention of ramp meters, used on highways to mitigate congestion. I discuss this subject in Numbers Rule Your World (link). There is an interesting stochastic phenomenon underlying highway congestion. Ramp meters help by regulating the inflow of vehicles onto the highway, and prolonging the period of time by which the highway runs at full capacity. The key insight is that…

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Data sleaze: Uber and beyond

April 26, 2017
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There has been a barrage of negative publicity related to Uber recently. The latest salvo is a long article in the New York Times (link). This piece focuses on Uber's CEO, who was trained as a computer engineer, but my interest lies primarily in several revelations about how Uber collects and uses customer data. The key episode picked up by various outlets (e.g. TechCrunch, Wired) involves Uber "secretly identifying and…

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Dispute over analysis of school quality and home prices shows social science is hard

April 24, 2017
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Dispute over analysis of school quality and home prices shows social science is hard

Most of my friends with families fret over school quality when deciding where to buy their homes. It's well known that good school districts are also associated with expensive houses. A feedback cycle is at work here: home prices surge where there are good schools; only richer people can afford to buy such homes; wealth brings other advantages, and so the schools tend to have better students, which leads to…

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My pre-existing United boycott, and some musing on randomness and fairness

April 12, 2017
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You probably already saw the video - if not, do yourself a favor, and search for "man forcibly removed from overbooked United flight." Other than the video evidence, which is damning, we don't have many facts, other than assertions made by various parties, repeated endlessly on social media and mainline media. Some facts, such as the United CEO claiming the passenger was "belligerent," is an assault on the meaning of…

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