Posts

October 29, 2014

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1:30 PM | How to Improve Internet Comments
The most promising and yet most disappointing aspects of the Internet are the written comments left by the general public.  On one hand, comment sections are a great democratization of personal opinion.  With public commenting, anyone can make their opinion known until the world on whatever topic interests them.  On the other hand, comment sections give voice to absolutely […]The post How to Improve Internet Comments appeared first on […]
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2:57 AM | Body-slam on the sister blog
John Ahlquist and Scott Gehlbach nail it. The post Body-slam on the sister blog appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.
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2:26 AM | Everyone Gets a Job!
A terrifying graph for any PhD student! (source)It's late October and that means we are squarely in the middle of job season for psychology PhDs (and PhD candidates). I was hired during the 2011-2012 job cycle, and so I recently switched to the evaluation side of the job process. Sitting on this side of the fence I feel incredibly fortunate to have a job: There are a ton of accomplished graduate students and postdocs with strong records, interesting research ideas, and stellar (!!!) letters of […]

October 28, 2014

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11:28 PM | October 2014: Is blonde hair attractive because it's rare?
Is blonde and red hair attractive because of how it looks, or because it’s rare? Also, “my genes made me do it”: can men (or women) blame their cheating ways on their genetic inheritance? And we also continue last month’s foray into the murky world of mate-poaching, and discover the differences between the sexes when it comes to detecting potential partner pilferers.Download the MP3Some have theorised that red and blonde hair is attractive because it is rare. New […]
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1:46 PM | Yes, I’ll help people for free but not like this!
I received the following (unsolicited) email: Dear Sir or Madam, My name is **; I am a graduate student, working on my thesis in **. A vital part of my research is performing a joint cluster analysis of attributional and relational data on **. I have tried to collaborate with the statisticians at ** and […] The post Yes, I’ll help people for free but not like this! appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.
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4:41 AM | And sometimes they don’t spam you at all
I received the following email: Dear Dr. Gelman, As a way of introduction, my name is . . . and I am very interested in studying in Columbia’s PhD statistics program. For the past 2 ½ years, I’ve worked as an analyst for . . . I am writing to communicate my interest in your […] The post And sometimes they don’t spam you at all appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.

October 27, 2014

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3:02 PM | 2 on chess
Is it really “often easier to win a rematch than to defend a championship”? The quoted bit above comes from Tyler Cowen, writing about the Anand/Carlsen world championship rematch. I’m still not used to the idea of a new world championship match every year but I guess why not? Anyway, here’s my question. Tyler Cowen […] The post 2 on chess appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.
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1:00 PM | On deck this week
Mon: 2 on chess Tues: Yes, I’ll help people for free but not like this! Wed: I love it when I can respond to a question with a single link Thurs: Boo! Who’s afraid of availability bias? Fri: This is where they publish the stuff that’s can’t make it into Psychological Science Sat: Ray Could […] The post On deck this week appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.
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11:13 AM | Temporary migration between Europe and Asia is on the rise
Due to work, study and personal reasons, temporary migration between Europe and Asia is growing, and increasingly mobility is happening in both directions. The EURA-NET project brings together researchers from...

October 26, 2014

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1:22 PM | Solution to the sample-allocation problem
See this recent post for background. Here’s the question: You are designing an experiment where you are estimating a linear dose-response pattern with a dose that x can take on the values 1, 2, 3, and the response is continuous. Suppose that there is no systematic error and that the measurement variance is proportional to x. You […] The post Solution to the sample-allocation problem appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.

October 25, 2014

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1:19 PM | Solution to the problem on the distribution of p-values
See this recent post for background. Here’s the question: It is sometimes said that the p-value is uniformly distributed if the null hypothesis is true. Give two different reasons why this statement is not in general true. The problem is with real examples, not just toy examples, so your reasons should not involve degenerate situations such as […] The post Solution to the problem on the distribution of p-values appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and […]

October 24, 2014

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8:01 PM | Flowers, Fungi & Felines: An Unusual Epidemic in Brazil
Rose-thorn disease sounds like a malady of lovesick teenagers, an illness of romance reserved for budding Romeos and Juliets swooning from their first forays into passion and lovesickness, an affliction arising from the shocking stick and sting of heartbreak. The sweet name of this malady, however, in no way belies the actual crustiness of its […]The post Flowers, Fungi & Felines: An Unusual Epidemic in Brazil appeared first on Body Horrors.
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1:14 PM | Solution to the helicopter design problem
See yesterday’s post for background. Here’s the question: In the helicopter activity, pairs of students design paper ”helicopters” and compete to create the copter that takes longest to reach the ground when dropped from a fixed height. The two parameters of the helicopter, a and b, correspond to the length of certain cuts in the […] The post Solution to the helicopter design problem appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.
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9:36 AM | The Oscar Pistorius Verdict and Theory of the Mind
On 19 August 2013 Oscar Pistorius was officially charged with the murder of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp. The Paralympic champion admitted shooting her on Valentine's Day but denied murder, saying he believed she was an intruder. On 12 September 2014 the judge ruled out murder by dolus eventualis – that is, that Pistorius foresaw his actions in firing four shots into the door could have led to the death of the person behind it but went ahead and fired anyway:... Read more
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9:36 AM | The Oscar Pistorius Verdict and Theory of Mind
On 19 August 2013 Oscar Pistorius was officially charged with the murder of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp. The Paralympic champion admitted shooting her on Valentine's Day but denied murder, saying he believed she was an intruder. On 12 September 2014 the judge ruled out murder by dolus eventualis – that is, that Pistorius foresaw his actions in firing four shots into the door could have led to the death of the person behind it but went ahead and fired anyway:... Read more
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7:16 AM | Oppiminen pelissä
[In Finnish, new book on games, playfulness and learning] Vastapaino on julkaissut mielenkiintoisen teoksen Oppiminen pelissä: pelit, pelillisyys ja leikillisyys opetuksessa (toim. Leena Krokfors, Marjaana Kangas & Kaisa Kopisto). Kirjoitin kirjaan seuraavat alkusanat: Oppimisen ja pelaamisen yhteys on toisaalta ikivanha … Continue reading →

October 23, 2014

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9:08 PM | No, Michael Jordan didn’t say that!
The names are changed, but the song remains the same. First verse. There’s an article by a journalist, The odds, continually updated, by F.D. Flam in the NY Times to which Andrew responded in blog form, No, I didn’t say that, by Andrew Gelman, on this blog. Second verse. There’s an article by a journalist, […] The post No, Michael Jordan didn’t say that! appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.
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8:11 PM | The Trouble with Rivers
To roughly quote Douglas Adams, “The story so far: In the beginning the United States was created and its accompanying Constitution did not provide any kind of framework for local […]
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1:30 PM | How to Write an APA Style Research Paper Introduction [INFOGRAPHIC]
Writing APA-style papers is a tricky business. So to complement my discussion of writing publishable scientific articles, I’ve created an infographic showing some of the major ideas you should consider when writing the introduction to an APA-style research paper. This approach will work well in most social scientific fields, especially Psychology. If you’re writing a […]The post How to Write an APA Style Research Paper Introduction [INFOGRAPHIC] appeared first on […]
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1:07 PM | Some questions from our Ph.D. statistics qualifying exam
In the in-class applied statistics qualifying exam, students had 4 hours to do 6 problems. Here were the 3 problems I submitted: In the helicopter activity, pairs of students design paper ”helicopters” and compete to create the copter that takes longest to reach the ground when dropped from a fixed height. The two parameters of the […] The post Some questions from our Ph.D. statistics qualifying exam appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social […]
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12:49 PM | Newsblast Volume 4 Issue 10
#NetworkScience In the current issue of the Network Science Center Newsblast Lynndee Kemmet discusses the Civil Information Sharing (CIS) Project and its research looking at the connection between food insecurity and political instability.  To learn more read the article in this … Continue reading →
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8:57 AM | African ideophones and their contribution to linguistics — workshop at WOCAL8 in Kyoto, Aug 2015
Organisers Dr. Mark Dingemanse (Max Planck Institute, Nijmegen) Prof. Sharon Rose (University of California, San Diego) Description Africa’s linguistic diversity has impacted the study of language in many ways. The articulatory phonetics of the Khoi and San languages prompted methodological innovations in … Continue reading →

October 22, 2014

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7:59 PM | Stan 2.5, now with MATLAB, Julia, and ODEs
As usual, you can find everything on the Stan Home Page. Drop us a line on the stan-users group if you have problems with installs or questions about Stan or coding particular models. New Interfaces We’d like to welcome two new interfaces: MatlabStan by Brian Lau, and  Stan.jl (for Julia) by Rob Goedman. The new […] The post Stan 2.5, now with MATLAB, Julia, and ODEs appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.
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1:56 PM | Sailing between the Scylla of hyping of sexy research and the Charybdis of reflexive skepticism
Recently I had a disagreement with Larry Bartels which I think is worth sharing with you. Larry and I took opposite positions on the hot topic of science criticism. To put things in a positive way, Larry was writing about some interesting recent research which I then constructively criticized. To be more negative, Larry was […] The post Sailing between the Scylla of hyping of sexy research and the Charybdis of reflexive skepticism appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, […]
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12:51 PM | Universal Social Rules Underlie Languages
© James Yang The September/October issue of Scientific American MIND features an article written by me and N.J. Enfield entitled “Universal Social Rules Underlie Languages”. We review recent research on conversation across cultures, including work on turn-taking, timing, and other-initiated repair. Scientific American … Continue reading →
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8:50 AM | Prostate cancer screening saves lives – but results in overdiagnosis
New research confirms that screening men for prostate cancer prevents cancer deaths. In a 13-year follow up study, prostate cancer mortality rates were around 20 per cent lower among men...

October 21, 2014

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1:18 PM | Try a spaghetti plot
Joe Simmons writes: I asked MTurk NFL fans to consider an NFL game in which the favorite was expected to beat the underdog by 7 points in a full-length game. I elicited their beliefs about sample size in a few different ways (materials .pdf; data .xls). Some were asked to give the probability that the better […] The post Try a spaghetti plot appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.

October 20, 2014

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2:12 PM | Three ways to present a probability forecast, and I only like one of them
To the nearest 10%: To the nearest 1%: To the nearest 0.1%: I think the National Weather Service knows what they’re doing on this one. The post Three ways to present a probability forecast, and I only like one of them appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.
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1:00 PM | On deck this week
Mon: Three ways to present a probability forecast, and I only like one of them Tues: Try a spaghetti plot Wed: I ain’t got no watch and you keep asking me what time it is Thurs: Some questions from our Ph.D. statistics qualifying exam Fri: Solution to the helicopter design problem Sat: Solution to the […] The post On deck this week appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.
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9:47 AM | Raw and Uncut 4: The Glow-Worm
Jean Henri Fabre (1823-1915) is considered by many to be the father of modern entomology. Last week I came across an English translation of his “Souvenirs Entomologiques” a series of texts on insects and arachnids. The translation is called “Fabre’s Book of Insects” and was done by Mrs. Rodolph Stawell in 1926. After reading I understand that much of his enduring popularity is due to his manner of writing about the lives of insects in biographical form, which he […]
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