Posts

July 27, 2014

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A Parallel Computing Primer So, Jonah is moving and he asked me to write a guest post. Jonah’s recent articles about computing prompted me to write about distributed computing. The question I will answer is: how do you go from computing with a sequential … Continue reading → The post A Parallel Computing Primer appeared first on The Physics Mill.
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I received this interesting [edited] email from Xiannian Fan at CUNY: I am trying to use PMC to solve Bayesian network structure learning problem (which is in a combinatorial space, not continuous space). In PMC, the proposal distributions qi,t can be very flexible, even specific to each iteration and each instance. My problem occurs due […]
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For some reason I was thinking about pieces of culture that have departed from the world but which somehow didn’t “stick” well enough to persist even in the sphere of nostalgia.  Like when people think about the early 1990s, the years when I was in college, they might well say “oh yeah, grunge” or “oh yeah, […]
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We’re happy to announce that all three interfaces (CmdStan, PyStan, and RStan) are up and ready to go for Stan 2.4. As usual, you can find full instructions for installation on the Stan Home Page. Here are the release notes with a list of what’s new and improved: New Features ------------ * L-BFGS optimization (now […] The post Stan 2.4, New and Improved appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.
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While I was trying to find a proper window to take a picture of the mountains of Eastern Turkey, an Air France flight attendant suggested me to try the view from the pilots’ cockpit! I thought she was joking but, after putting a request to the captain, she came to walk me there and I […]
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X and I did some “Sampling Through Adaptive Neighborhoods” ourselves the other day and checked out the nearby grave of Stanislaw Ulam, who is buried with his wife, Françoise Ulam, and others of her family. The above image of Stanislaw and Françoise Ulam comes from this charming mini-biography from Roland Brasseur, which I found here. […] The post Stan found using directed search appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.
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Until 2006 (when bigger ones were found elsewhere) this was the home to the tallest known tree in the world. But it's not marked, so you just have to look at them all and guess which one might be the biggest.( More )
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I was in Barriques and “Bra,” by Cymande came on, and I was like, cool song, cool of Barriques to be playing this song that I’m cool for knowing about, maybe I should go say something to show everyone that I already know this cool song, and then I thought, why do I know about […]
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Aka that wide spot in the road on the way to Montgomery Woods( More )

July 26, 2014

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Since Stan Ulam is buried in Cimetière du Montparnasse, next to CREST, Andrew and I paid his grave a visit on a sunny July afternoon. Among elaborate funeral constructions, the Aron family tomb is sober and hidden behind funeral houses. It came as a surprise to me to discover that Ulam had links with France […]
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The workshop is organized by John Langford (Microsoft Research NYC), along with Alekh Agarwal and Alina Beygelzimer, and it features Liblinear, Vowpal Wabbit, Torch, Theano, and . . . you guessed it . . . Stan! Here’s the current program: 8:55am: Introduction 9:00am: Liblinear by CJ Lin. 9:30am: Vowpal Wabbit and Learning to Search by […] The post NYC workshop 22 Aug on open source machine learning systems appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.
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Well hello there, cutie, and welcome. Aunt Pythia loves you today, even more than usual! For some reason she can’t pinpoint, but probably has to do with a general feeling of happiness and fulfillment, Aunt Pythia is even more excited than usual to be here and to toss off unreasonably smug and affectionate opinions and […]
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by @ulaulaman via @MathUpdate http://t.co/LJX8gSX7xf $\alpha + \beta = \frac{\pi}{2}$ $\sin (\alpha + \beta) = \sin \frac{\pi}{2}$ $\sin \alpha \cdot \cos \beta + \sin \beta \cdot \cos \alpha = 1$ $\frac{a}{c} \cdot \frac{a}{c} + \frac{b}{c} \cdot \frac{b}{c} = 1$ $\frac{a^2}{c^2} + \frac{b^2}{c^2} = 1$ $a^2 + b^2 = c^2$via @MathUpdate
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I am off to Bangalore for a few days, taking part in an Indo-French workshop on statistics and mathematical biology run by the Indo-French Centre for Applied Mathematics (IFCAM).Filed under: Statistics, Travel, University life Tagged: Bangalore, IFCAM, India, workshop

July 25, 2014

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Filed under: pictures, Running, Travel Tagged: art brut, Bagneux, biking, CREST, paint, stains, truck
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My op/ed about math teaching and Little League coaching is the most emailed article in the New York Times today.  Very cool! But here’s something interesting; it’s only the 14th most viewed article, the 6th most tweeted, and the 6th most shared on Facebook.  On the other hand, this article about child refugees from Honduras […]
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Are students customers, or are they just students? Perhaps there's a third way -- to think of them as clients, and faculty as consultants.
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Anne Pier Salverda writes: I came across this blog entry, “An Experience with a Registered Replication Project,” and thought that you would find this interesting. It’s written by Simone Schnall, a social psychologist who is the first author of an oft-cited Psych Science(!) paper (“Cleanliness reduces the severity of moral judgments”) that a group of […] The post “An Experience with a Registered Replication Project” appeared first on Statistical […]
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Yesterday was a day filled with secrets and codes. In the morning, at The Platform, we had guest speaker Columbia history professor Matthew Connelly, who came and talked to us about his work with declassified documents. Two big and slightly depressing take-aways for me were the following: As records have become digitized, it has gotten […]

July 24, 2014

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A new arXival on nested sampling: “A statistical test for nested sampling algorithms” by Johannes Buchner. The point of the test is to check if versions of the nested sampling algorithm that fail to guarantee increased likelihood (or nesting) at each step are not missing parts of the posterior mass. and hence producing biased evidence […]
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It reminds me of Martin Amis’s The Information, in that it is a really well-made thing, but one which I think probably shouldn’t have been made, and which I’m probably sorry I read, because it’s sick in its heart. Everything else I can say is a spoiler so I’ll put it below a tab. 1.  I […]
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People keep pointing me to this. P.S. I miss the old days when people would point me to bad graphs. The post If it was good enough for Martin Luther King and Laurence Tribe . . . appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.
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Aleks points us to this beautiful dynamic graph by Noah Veltman showing the heights and weights of NFL players over time. The color is pretty but I think I’d prefer something simpler, just one dot per player (with some jittering to handle the discrete reporting of heights and weights). In any case, it’s a great […] The post NFL players keep getting bigger and bigger appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.
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I'm passing this on from Mark Zelcer (CUNY): A group of researchers in philosophy, psychology and mathematics are requesting the assistance of the mathematical community by participating in a survey about mathematicians' philosophical intuitions. The survey is here: http://goo.gl/Gu5S4E. It would really help them if many mathematicians participated. Thanks!
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Earlier this morning I received an email question from Yair Hayut. Is it consistent without the axiom of choice, of course, that there are free ultrafilters on the natural numbers but none on the real numbers? Well, of course that the answer is negative. If $\cal U$ is a free ultrafilter on $\omega$ then \$\{X\subseteq\mathcal […]
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I was wondering whether the outerplanar strict confluent drawings I studied in a Graph Drawing paper last year had underlying diagrams whose treewidth is bounded, similarly to the treewidth bound for the usual outerplanar graphs. The confluent graphs themselves can't have low treewidth, because they include large complete bipartite graphs, but I was hoping that a treewidth bound for the diagram could be used to prove that the graphs themselves have low clique-width. Sadly, it turns out not to […]

July 23, 2014

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[Here is a second guest post on the ABC in Sydney workshop, written by Chris Drovandi] First up Dennis Prangle presented his recent work on “Lazy ABC”, which can speed up ABC by potentially abandoning model simulations early that do not look promising. Dennis introduces a continuation probability to ensure that the target distribution of […]
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via @CERN http://t.co/9Rac42mBVh #CPviolation #CPsymmetry #matter #antimatter The CP violation is a violation of the CP-symmetry, a combination between the charge conjugation symmetry (C) and the parity symmetry (P). CP-symmetry states that the laws of physics should be the same if a particle is interchanged with its antiparticle, and then its spatial coordinates are inverted.The CP violation is discovered in 1964 by Christenson, Cronin, Fitch, and Turlay (Cronin and Fitch awarded the Nobel […]
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A reporter asked me for a quote regarding the importance of statistics. But, after thinking about it for a moment, I decided that statistics isn’t so important at all. A world without statistics wouldn’t be much different from the world we have now. What would be missing, in a world without statistics? Science would be […] The post A world without statistics appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.
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I spent about a month in the UK earlier this summer, and that meant I took a lot of train trips. I love riding trains: the feeling of endless possibility I get when I look at the departure boards,... -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com