Posts Tagged ‘ Zombies ’

John Bohannon’s chocolate-and-weight-loss hoax study actually understates the problems with standard p-value scientific practice

May 29, 2015
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John Bohannon’s chocolate-and-weight-loss hoax study actually understates the problems with standard p-value scientific practice

Several people pointed me to this awesome story by John Bohannon: “Slim by Chocolate!” the headlines blared. A team of German researchers had found that people on a low-carb diet lost weight 10 percent faster if they ate a chocolate bar every day. It made the front page of Bild, Europe’s largest daily newspaper, just […] The post John Bohannon’s chocolate-and-weight-loss hoax study actually understates the problems with standard p-value…

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Cracked.com > Huffington Post, Wall Street Journal, New York Times

May 28, 2015
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David Christopher Bell goes to the trouble (link from Palko) to explain why “Every Map of ‘The Most Popular _________ by State’ Is Bullshit.” As long as enterprising P.R. firms are willing to supply unsourced data, lazy journalists (or whatever you call these people) will promote it. We saw this a few years ago in […] The post Cracked.com > Huffington Post, Wall Street Journal, New York Times appeared first…

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Creativity is the ability to see relationships where none exist

May 22, 2015
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Creativity is the ability to see relationships where none exist

Brent Goldfarb and Andrew King, in a paper to appear in the journal Strategic Management, write: In a recent issue of this journal, Bettis (2012) reports a conversation with a graduate student who forthrightly announced that he had been trained by faculty to “search for asterisks”. The student explained that he sifted through large databases […] The post Creativity is the ability to see relationships where none exist appeared first…

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Weggy update: it just gets sadder and sadder

May 21, 2015
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Uh oh, lots on research misconduct lately. Newest news is that noted Wikipedia-lifter Ed Wegman sued John Mashey, one of his critics, for $2 million dollars. Then he backed down and decided not to sue after all. Best quote from Mashey’s write-up: None of this made any sense to me, but then I am no […] The post Weggy update: it just gets sadder and sadder appeared first on Statistical…

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“I mean, what exact buttons do I have to hit?”

May 13, 2015
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While looking for something else, I happened to come across this: Unfortunately there’s the expectation that if you start with a scientific hypothesis and do a randomized experiment, there should be a high probability of learning an enduring truth. And if the subject area is exciting, there should consequently be a high probability of publication […] The post “I mean, what exact buttons do I have to hit?” appeared first…

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There’s No Such Thing As Unbiased Estimation. And It’s a Good Thing, Too.

May 11, 2015
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There’s No Such Thing As Unbiased Estimation. And It’s a Good Thing, Too.

Following our recent post on econometricians’ traditional privileging of unbiased estimates, there were a bunch of comments echoing the challenge of teaching this topic, as students as well as practitioners often seem to want the comfort of an absolute standard such as best linear unbiased estimate or whatever. Commenters also discussed the tradeoff between bias […] The post There’s No Such Thing As Unbiased Estimation. And It’s a Good Thing,…

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“The general problem I have with noninformatively-derived Bayesian probabilities is that they tend to be too strong.”

May 1, 2015
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We interrupt our usual programming of mockery of buffoons to discuss a bit of statistical theory . . . Continuing from yesterday‘s quotation of my 2012 article in Epidemiology: Like many Bayesians, I have often represented classical confidence intervals as posterior probability intervals and interpreted one-sided p-values as the posterior probability of a positive effect. […] The post “The general problem I have with noninformatively-derived Bayesian probabilities is that they…

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The feather, the bathroom scale, and the kangaroo

April 21, 2015
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The feather, the bathroom scale, and the kangaroo

Here’s something I wrote in the context of one of those “power = .06″ studies: My criticism of the ovulation-and-voting study is ultimately quantitative. Their effect size is tiny and their measurement error is huge. My best analogy is that they are trying to use a bathroom scale to weigh a feather—and the feather is […] The post The feather, the bathroom scale, and the kangaroo appeared first on Statistical…

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Diederik Stapel in the news, again

April 19, 2015
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Bikes . . . have “become the most common mode of transportation for criminals.” OK, that’s just ethnic profiling of Dutch people. I think they’re just gonna put the whole country on lockdown. The post Diederik Stapel in the news, again...

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How do data and experiments fit into a scientific research program?

April 18, 2015
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I was talking with someone today about various “dead on arrival” research programs we’ve been discussing here for the past few years: I’m talking about topics such beauty and sex ratios of children, or ovulation and voting, or ESP—all of which possibly represent real phenomena and could possibly be studied in a productive way, just […] The post How do data and experiments fit into a scientific research program? appeared…

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