Posts Tagged ‘ Literature ’

Updike and O’Hara

August 13, 2014
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I just read this review by Louis Menand of a biography of John Updike. Lots of interesting stuff here, with this, perhaps, being the saddest: When Updike received the National Book Foundation Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters, in 1998, two of [his second wife's] children were present, but his were not invited. Menand’s […] The post Updike and O’Hara appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social…

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Battle of the cozy comedians: What’s Alan Bennett’s problem with Stewart Lee?

July 22, 2014
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Battle of the cozy comedians:  What’s Alan Bennett’s problem with Stewart Lee?

When in London awhile ago I picked up the book, “How I Escaped My Certain Fate: The Life and Deaths of a Stand-Up Comedian,” by Stewart Lee. I’d never heard of the guy but the book was sitting there, it had good blurbs, and from a quick flip-through it looked interesting. Now that I’ve read […] The post Battle of the cozy comedians: What’s Alan Bennett’s problem with Stewart Lee?…

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Trimmed Hedges

June 14, 2014
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Sorry about the title. It was the closest I could come to “Shattered Glass.” The subhead is “Pulitzer winner. Lefty hero. Plagiarist.” Chris Hedges is a reporter who apparently has been very busy for many years, in fact, according to this report by Christopher Ketcham he’s been so busy telling important things to the world […] The post Trimmed Hedges appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.

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Fooled by randomness

April 20, 2014
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From 2006: Naseem Taleb‘s publisher sent me a copy of “Fooled by randomness: the hidden role of chance in life and the markets” to review. It’s an important topic, and the book is written in a charming style—I’ll try to respond in kind, with some miscellaneous comments. On the cover of the book is a […] The post Fooled by randomness appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social…

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How literature is like statistical reasoning: Kosara on stories. Gelman and Basbøll on stories.

April 7, 2014
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In “Story: A Definition,” visual analysis researcher Robert Kosara writes: A story ties facts together. There is a reason why this particular collection of facts is in this story, and the story gives you that reason. provides a narrative path through those facts. In other words, it guides the viewer/reader through the world, rather than just throwing […] The post How literature is like statistical reasoning: Kosara on stories. Gelman and Basbøll…

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In the best alternative histories, the real world is what’s ultimately real

March 17, 2014
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This amusing-yet-so-true video directed by Eléonore Pourriat shows a sex-role-reversed world where women are in charge and men don’t get taken seriously. It’s convincing and affecting, but the twist that interests me comes at the end, when the real world returns. It’s really creepy. And this in turn reminds me of something we discussed here […]The post In the best alternative histories, the real world is what’s ultimately real appeared…

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Literal vs. rhetorical

March 4, 2014
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Literal vs. rhetorical

Thomas Basbøll pointed me to a discussion on the orgtheory blog in which Jerry Davis, the editor of a journal of business management argued that it is difficult for academic researchers to communicate with the public because “the public prefers Cheetos to a healthy salad” and when serious papers are discussed on the internet, “everyone […]The post Literal vs. rhetorical appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.

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What is the appropriate time scale for blogging—the day or the week?

March 3, 2014
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What is the appropriate time scale for blogging—the day or the week?

I post (approximately) once a day and don’t plan to change that. I have enough material to post more often—for example, I could intersperse existing blog posts with summaries of my published papers or of other work that I like; and, beyond this, we currently have a one-to-two-month backlog of posts—but I’m afraid that if […]The post What is the appropriate time scale for blogging—the day or the week? appeared…

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A good comment on one of my papers

February 26, 2014
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An anonymous reviewer wrote: I appreciate informal writing styles as a means of increasing accessibility. However, the informality here seems to decrease accessibility – partly because of the assumed knowledge of the reader for concepts and terms, and also for its wandering style. Many concepts are introduced without explanation and are not clearly and decisively […]The post A good comment on one of my papers appeared first on Statistical Modeling,…

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Parables vs. stories

January 24, 2014
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Parables vs. stories

God is in every leaf of every tree, but he is not in every leaf of every parable. Let me explain with a story. A few months ago I read the new book, Doing Data Science, by Rachel Schutt and Cathy O’Neal, and I came across the following motivation for comprehensive integration of data sources, […]The post Parables vs. stories appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.

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