Posts Tagged ‘ mathematics ’

Generating a Markov chain vs. computing the transition matrix

May 23, 2013
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$h\times h$

A couple of days ago, we had a quick chat on Karl Broman‘s blog, about snakes and ladders (see http://kbroman.wordpress.com/…) with Karl and Corey (see http://bayesianbiologist.com/….), and the use of Markov Chain. I do believe that this application is truly awesome: the example is understandable by anyone, and computations (almost any kind, from what we’ve tried) are easy to perform. At the same time, some French students asked me specific details regarding…

Don’t be misguided by the beauty of mathematics, if the data tells you otherwise

May 21, 2013
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I was trained as a mathematician and it was only last year, when I attended the Royal Statistical Society conference and met many statisticians that I understood how different the two groups are. In mathematics you often start with some axioms, things...

Teaching a service course in statistics

May 6, 2013
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Teaching a service course in statistics Most students who enrol in an initial course in statistics at university level do so because they have to. I did some research on attitudes to statistics in my entry level quantitative methods course, … Continue reading →

Using the Golden Section Search Method to Minimize the Sum of Absolute Deviations

April 29, 2013
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$Using the Golden Section Search Method to Minimize the Sum of Absolute Deviations$

Introduction Recently, I introduced the golden search method – a special way to save computation time by modifying the bisection method with the golden ratio, and I illustrated how to minimize a cusped function with this script.  I also wrote an R function to implement this method and an R script on how to apply this […]

Martingale et journalisme scientifique

April 8, 2013
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Être journaliste scientifique ne doit pas être facile. J’imagine qu’il faut être à l’écoute des nouvelles scientifiques, et d’informer, aussi justement que possible. C’est ce que fait avec brio Pierre Barthélémy (aka @PasseurSciences sur Twitter) dans sa chronique hebdomadaire sélection scientifique de la semaine. Il essaye ainsi de parler de sciences dans un journal qui a (trop) souvent confondu science et technologie (technologie étant aussi souvent un mot savant utilisé…

Which comes first – problem or solution?

April 8, 2013
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In teaching it can be difficult to know whether to start with a problem or a solution method. It seems more obvious to start with the problem, but sometimes it is better to introduce the possibility of the solution before … Continue reading →

A common theme in mathematics

April 2, 2013
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$A common theme in mathematics$

This is from a post Connected objects and a reconstruction theorem: A common theme in mathematics is to replace the study of an object with the study of some category that can be built from that object. For example, we can replace the study of a group  with the study of its category of linear representations, […]

Context – if it isn’t fun…

March 31, 2013
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The role of context in statistical analysis The wonderful advantage of teaching statistics is the real-life context within which any applicaton must exist. This can also be one of the difficulties. Statistics without context is merely the mathematics of statistics, … Continue reading →

February 16, 2013
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Today, I wanted to publish a post on economics, and decision theory. And probability too… Those who do follow my blog should know that I am a big fan of Simpson’s paradox. I also love to mention it in my econometric classes. It does raise important questions, that I do relate to multicolinearity, and interepretations of regression models, with multiple (negatively correlated) explanatory variables. This paradox has amazing pedogological virtues. I did mention it several…

Statistics or Calculus? Do both!

January 20, 2013
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This post is prompted by two 17 year old boys, Cam and Thomas, who are about to enter year 13, the final year of High school in New Zealand. They are both academically capable, with highly educated parents. And both … Continue reading →