Posts

January 26, 2015

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4:02 PM | la tartaruga che disegna sulla sabbia
I laboratori svizzeri del programma Disney Research, dopo la ricerca sugli occhi continuano a sfornare innovazioni. In questo caso ecco un piccolo robottino a forma di tartaruga in grado di disegnare sulla sabbia varie forme e in maniera completamente autonoma, partendo da alcuni modelli caricati nella sua memoria.via Popular Science

January 25, 2015

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9:24 PM | Il (non) carnevale della fisica #5
E siamo giunti, con l'ultima domenica di gennaio 2015, alla quinta edizione del (non) carnevale della fisica, appuntamento che, spero, sia atteso da sempre più lettori. L'introduzione di questa edizione è dedicata a Philipp Eduard Anton von Lenard, che ha vinto il quinto Nobel per la fisica, nel 1905, per il suo lavoro sui raggi catodici.Nato il 7 giugno del 1862, iniziò a interessarsi dei raggi catodici nel 1888. I raggi catodici sono un fascio di elettroni prodotti […]

Lenard, P. (1894). Ueber Kathodenstrahlen in Gasen von atmosphärischem Druck und im äussersten Vacuum, Annalen der Physik, 287 (2) 225-267. DOI: 10.1002/andp.18942870202

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9:13 AM | Sometimes a Particle Isn’t Possible
Sometimes a Particle Isn’t Possible Last time, I showed you how you could construct a photon, a light particle, in a configuration of mirrors called a ring cavity. This time I’ll show you that sometimes, you can’t make just one particle—they only come in pairs. … Continue reading → The post Sometimes a Particle Isn’t Possible appeared first on The Physics Mill.
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1:43 AM | Postdoc opportunity here, with us (Jennifer Hill, Marc Scott, and me)! On quantitative education research!!
Hop the Q-TRAIN: that is, the Quantitative Training Program, a postdoctoral research program supervised by Jennifer Hill, Marc Scott, and myself, and funded by the Institute for Education Sciences. As many of you are aware, education research is both important and challenging. And, on the technical level, we’re working on problems in Bayesian inference, multilevel […] The post Postdoc opportunity here, with us (Jennifer Hill, Marc Scott, and me)! On quantitative education […]

January 24, 2015

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11:15 PM | would you wear those tee-shirts?!
Here are two examples of animal “face” tee-shirts I saw advertised in The New York Times (of all places!0 and that I would not consider wearing. At any time. Filed under: Kids, pictures Tagged: animals, Asian lady beetle, fashion, tarsier, tee-shirt, The New York Times
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10:19 PM | News
I am happy to say that it is my first time I see a give-away that is maths related. I am so excited that I thought it would be such a good idea to share it with all of you. The give-away is on a Tumblr page: Curiosa Mathematica, and it celebrates its 10,000 followers. […]
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2:55 PM | Aunt Pythia’s advice
Time passes quickly, my friends. It seems like only yesterday that Aunt Pythia was answering really long questions, and today her questions seem to be extra short. Last week it was cold outside – freezing! – but this week it is warm and snowy (but not for long!). Last week she was knitting a cowl, this […]
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2:50 PM | Soil #1: incrinare la perfezione
A partire da Lost in particolare (ma si potrebbe già citare Il prigioniero della BBC degli anni Sessanta del XX secolo, o la più recente Alias, sempre restando al pre-Lost) le serie televisive hanno iniziato a ragionare in maniera molto più "supereroistica", se così si può dire, ovvero proponendo episodi con una forte continuity interna, esaltata da una trama forte, come i sopravvissuti da un incidente aereo nel caso di Lost, o un agente segreto che cerca di […]
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2:31 PM | “What then should we teach about hypothesis testing?”
Someone who wishes to remain anonymous writes in: Last week, I was looking forward to a blog post titled “Why continue to teach and use hypothesis testing?” I presume that this scheduled post merely became preempted by more timely posts. But I am still interested in reading the exchange that will follow. My feeling is […] The post “What then should we teach about hypothesis testing?” appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.
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1:18 PM | brief stop in Edinburgh
Yesterday, I was all too briefly in Edinburgh for a few hours, to give a seminar in the School of Mathematics, on the random forests approach to ABC model choice (that was earlier rejected). (The slides are almost surely identical to those used at the NIPS workshop.) One interesting question at the end of the […]
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7:00 AM | An approach towards ethics: primate sociality
Moral decision making is one of the major torrents in human behavior. It often overrides other ways of making judgments, it generates conflicting sets of cultural values and is reinforced by them. Such conflicts might even occur in the head of some unfortunate individual, which makes the process really creative. On the other hand ethical […]

January 23, 2015

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11:15 PM | I remember you [not that fondly]
I Remember You: A Ghost Story is another Icelandic novel by Yrsa Sigurdardottir, that I bought more because it takes place in Iceland than because of its style, as I found the previous novel was somewhat missing in its plot. Still, I was expecting better, as the novel won the 2012 Icelandic Crime Fiction Award. […]
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10:58 PM | CfP: 2015 Logic Colloquium in Helsinki
First Announcement & Call for AbstractsLogic Colloquium 2015European Summer Meeting of the Association for Symbolic LogicHelsinki, Finland, 3-8 August 2015http://www.helsinki.fi/lc2015The annual European Summer Meeting of the Association for Symbolic Logic, the Logic Colloquium 2015 (LC 2015), will be organized in Helsinki, Finland, 3-8 August 2015. Logic Colloquium 2015 is co-located with the 15th Conference of Logic, Methodology and Philosophy of Science,CLMPS 2015, and with […]
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3:18 PM | Sanditon
Tra romanzi brevi e incompiuti con Sanditon ho finalmente concluso quella che considero la lettura preparatoria alle opere più corpose di Jane Austen (che però non so ancora quando inizierà...).La brillante scrittrice inglese con questo incompiuto propone la tipica ambientazione della periferia britannica, in questo caso nell'omonima località balneare, dove Mr Parker prova ad avviare un'attività per rendere Sanditon una località turistica ambita. L'idea […]
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2:02 PM | What’s the point of the margin of error?
So . . . the scheduled debate on using margin of error with non-probability panels never happened. We got it started but there was some problem with the webinar software and nobody put the participants could hear anything. The 5 minutes of conversation we did have was pretty good, though. I was impressed. The webinar […] The post What’s the point of the margin of error? appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.
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1:30 PM | Convex hulls, the TSP, and long drives
I’ve been reading the book In Pursuit of the Traveling Salesman by William Cook lately. In Chapter 10, on “The Human Touch”, Cook mentions a paper, by James MacGregor and Thomas Ormerod, “Human performance on the traveling salesman problem”. One … Continue reading →
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10:56 AM | Mathematician wins ‘Oscar’
This year’s Oscars ceremony, which will take place on 22nd February, will honour those who’ve achieved greatness in film-making, performance, scoring, sound and production. You may not know that in addition to the main ceremony, the Academy also has an untelevised award ceremony taking place two weeks earlier, called the Academy Scientific and Technical Awards (nerd Oscars).... Read more »
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10:24 AM | Review of Williamson's Tetralogue
By Catarina Dutilh Novaes(Cross-posted at NewAPPS)I've been asked to write a review of Williamson's brand new book Tetralogue for the Times Higher Education. Here is what I've come up with so far. Comments are very welcome, as I still have some time before submitting the final version. (For more background on the book, here is a short video where Williamson explains the project.)============================Disagreement in debates and discussions is an interesting […]
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12:27 AM | Rich states have Androids, rich people have iPhones
CN reports on a study claiming that smarter people use iPhones (here’s the original white paper by chitika, a mobile ad network.) There are several different models used (linear, stepwise linear, and logistic) to predict iPhone usage share for a … Continue reading →

January 22, 2015

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11:29 PM | The linear algebra of edge sets of graphs
This quarter, in my advanced algorithms class, I've been going through Vazirani's Approximation Algorithms book chapter-by-chapter, and learning lots of interesting material that I didn't already know myself in the process.One of the things I recently learned (in covering chapter 6 on feedback vertex set approximation)* is that, although all the students have taken some form of linear algebra, many of them have never seen a vector space in which the base field is not the real numbers or in […]
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11:15 PM | not Bayesian enough?!
Our random forest paper was alas rejected last week. Alas because I think the approach is a significant advance in ABC methodology when implemented for model choice, avoiding the delicate selection of summary statistics and the report of shaky posterior probability approximation. Alas also because the referees missed the point, perceiving random forests as a […]
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10:56 PM | Il tetrabassotto
Il ritorno di Uncle Scrooge propone ai lettori d'oltreoceano una storia di Rodolfo Cimino e Romano Scarpa con una copertina di Giorgio Cavazzano: via alla news!
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5:45 PM | Double public goods games and acid-mediated tumor invasion
Although I’ve spent more time thinking about pairwise games, I’ve recently expanded my horizons to more serious considerations of public-goods games. They crop up frequently when we are modeling agents at the cellular level, since interacts are often indirect through production of some sort of common extra-cellular signal. Unlike the trivial to characterize two strategy […]

Peña, J., Lehmann, L. & Nöldeke, G. (2014). Gains from switching and evolutionary stability in multi-player matrix games., Journal of Theoretical Biology, 346 23-33. PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24380778

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3:28 PM | Sierpiński Carpet Project
If you enjoyed the magnificent ridiculousness of Matt Parker’s MegaMenger international fractal building project, but would prefer something slightly lower-dimensional, we’ve found the collaborative international fractal-building project for you! A team led by José L. Rodríguez at the University of Almería, in Spain (who also built a Menger Sponge for MegaMenger) are attempting to build a giant... Read more »
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2:54 PM | Patience and research
I’m going to follow up on a recent post of Thomas Basbøll and argue that patience is an important, and I think under-appreciated, practice in research. This is an odd post for me to write because I’m usually not a patient person. In some ways, though, and surprising as it may sound, blogging is a […] The post Patience and research appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.
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1:25 PM | Intentional discrimination versus disparate impact
I’m paying lots of attention to the Supreme Court’s coming decision on The Fair Housing Act. A New York Times editorial of this morning does a good job explaining the issues, including the concern that Chief Justice Roberts seems to think we’ve moved past racial discrimination in this country. The burning question is whether housing […]
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1:18 PM | Sequential Monte Carlo 2015 workshop
An announcement for the SMC 2015 workshop: Sequential Monte Carlo methods (also known as particle filters) have revolutionized the on-line and off-line analysis of data in fields as diverse as target tracking, computer vision, financial modelling, brain imagery, or population ecology. Their popularity stems from the fact that they have made possible to solve numerically many […]
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1:00 PM | Three evolving thoughts about flipped learning
Teaching is hard, and teaching with nonstandard models requires constant reinvention. Here are three thoughts about flipped learning that I noticed have evolved considerably since first starting to use the flipped classroom.
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1:00 PM | Advice for going solo
Two years ago I left my job at MD Anderson to become an independent consultant. When people ask me what I learned or what advice I’d give, here are some of the things I usually say. You can’t transition gradually I’ve done consulting on the side throughout my career, and I planned to ramp up […]
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9:41 AM | In which I recommend some bedtime reading
Some time back the Pop Science Guy invited me to write a ‘10 Great History of Science Books’ list for his blog, to which I readily agreed. However being a professional procrastinator when it comes to writing anything I put … Continue reading →
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