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Posts

April 24, 2014

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1:09 PM | An open site for researchers to post and share papers
Alexander Grossman writes: We have launched a beta version of ScienceOpen in December at the occasion of the MRS Fall meeting in Boston. The participants of that conference, most of them were active researchers in physics, chemistry, and materials science, provided us with a very positive feedback. In particular they emphazised that it appears to […]The post An open site for researchers to post and share papers appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.

April 23, 2014

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2:15 PM | Newsblast Volume 4 Issue 5
#NetworkScience In the current issue of the Network Science Center Newsblast COL Kevin Huggins, Dr. Cyril Cassagnes, and Dr. John James discuss their research using tactical mobile clouds and dismounted troops to solve ‘big Army problems that Army science and … Continue reading →
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1:17 PM | Thinking of doing a list experiment? Here’s a list of reasons why you should think again
Someone wrote in: We are about to conduct a voting list experiment. We came across your comment recommending that each item be removed from the list. Would greatly appreciate it if you take a few minutes to spell out your recommendation in a little more detail. In particular: (a) Why are you “uneasy” about list […]The post Thinking of doing a list experiment? Here’s a list of reasons why you should think again appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, […]
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8:08 AM | A short questionnaire regarding the subjective assessment of evidence
E. J. Wagenmakers writes: Remember I briefly talked to you about the subjective assessment of evidence? Together with Richard Morey and myself, Annelies Bartlema created a short questionnaire that can be done online. There are five scenarios and it does not take more than 5 minutes to complete. So far we have collected responses from […]The post A short questionnaire regarding the subjective assessment of evidence appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social […]

April 22, 2014

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1:01 PM | Ticket to Baaaaarf
A link from the comments here took me to the wonderfully named Barfblog and a report by Don Schaffner on some reporting. First, the background: A university in England issued a press release saying that “Food picked up just a few seconds after being dropped is less likely to contain bacteria than if it is […]The post Ticket to Baaaaarf appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.

April 21, 2014

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6:02 PM | Stan Model of the Week: Hierarchical Modeling of Supernovas
The Stan Model of the Week showcases research using Stan to push the limits of applied statistics.  If you have a model that you would like to submit for a future post then send us an email. Our inaugural post comes from Nathan Sanders, a graduate student finishing up his thesis on astrophysics at Harvard. […]The post Stan Model of the Week: Hierarchical Modeling of Supernovas appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.
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2:54 PM | Ticket to Baaaath
Ooooooh, I never ever thought I’d have a legitimate excuse to tell this story, and now I do! The story took place many years ago, but first I have to tell you what made me think of it: Rasmus Bååth posted the following comment last month: On airplane tickets a Swedish “å” is written as […]The post Ticket to Baaaath appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.
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1:15 PM | Time Travel Holds Little Appeal for the Old
A new study from the Pew Research Center finds that 10% of Millennials think a time machine would be cool -- compared to just 3% of people over 65. It brings to mind my own mother, who at 89 has managed a cell phone but has no interest in learning any other modern machinery. She's too busy hanging on for dear life to the here and now. read more
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1:00 PM | On deck this week
Mon: Ticket to Baaaath Tues: Ticket to Baaaaarf Wed: Thinking of doing a list experiment? Here’s a list of reasons why you should think again Thurs: An open site for researchers to post and share papers Fri: Questions about “Too Good to Be True” Sat: Sleazy sock puppet can’t stop spamming our discussion of compressed […]The post On deck this week appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.

April 20, 2014

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1:33 PM | Fooled by randomness
From 2006: Naseem Taleb‘s publisher sent me a copy of “Fooled by randomness: the hidden role of chance in life and the markets” to review. It’s an important topic, and the book is written in a charming style—I’ll try to respond in kind, with some miscellaneous comments. On the cover of the book is a […]The post Fooled by randomness appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.

April 19, 2014

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1:27 PM | Index or indicator variables
Someone who doesn’t want his name shared (for the perhaps reasonable reason that he’ll “one day not be confused, and would rather my confusion not live on online forever”) writes: I’m exploring HLMs and stan, using your book with Jennifer Hill as my field guide to this new territory. I think I have a generally […]The post Index or indicator variables appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.

April 18, 2014

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1:55 PM | One-tailed or two-tailed?
Someone writes: Suppose I have two groups of people, A and B, which differ on some characteristic of interest to me; and for each person I measure a single real-valued quantity X. I have a theory that group A has a higher mean value of X than group B. I test this theory by using […]The post One-tailed or two-tailed? appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.
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4:15 AM | (Sample) Size Matters
Sample Size MattersOn this blog and others, on twitter (@mwkraus), at conferences, and in the halls of the psychology building at the University of Illinois, I have engaged in a wealth of important discussions about improving research methods in social-personality psychology. Many prominent psychologists have offered several helpful suggestions in this regard (here, here, here, and here).Among the many suggestions for building a better psychological science, perhaps the simplest and most […]

April 17, 2014

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1:35 PM | If you get to the point of asking, just do it. But some difficulties do arise . . .
Nelson Villoria writes: I find the multilevel approach very useful for a problem I am dealing with, and I was wondering whether you could point me to some references about poolability tests for multilevel models. I am working with time series of cross sectional data and I want to test whether the data supports cross […]The post If you get to the point of asking, just do it. But some difficulties do arise . . . appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.

April 16, 2014

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1:47 PM | Looking for Bayesian expertise in India, for the purpose of analysis of sarcoma trials
Prakash Nayak writes: I work as a musculoskeletal oncologist (surgeon) in Mumbai, India and am keen on sarcoma research. Sarcomas are rare disorders, and conventional frequentist analysis falls short of providing meaningful results for clinical application. I am thus keen on applying Bayesian analysis to a lot of trials performed with small numbers in this […]The post Looking for Bayesian expertise in India, for the purpose of analysis of sarcoma trials appeared first on Statistical […]
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12:50 PM | Investigating infant formula’s possible role in preventing diabetes
Researchers at the University of Tampere are exploring whether early nutrition has an effect on the incidence of type 1 diabetes. The EDIA project explores ways of preventing childhood diabetes....
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7:53 AM | Why faith can’t – and shouldn’t – disentangle science and politics
I recently appeared as a panelist on the BBC debate show The Big Questions, debating the topic ‘should we have more faith in science?’. So here are some more extended thoughts on that topic. The programme ranged from climate change to homeopathy, … Continue reading →

April 15, 2014

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10:42 PM | Kahneman on Intuitive Statistics and Small Samples
Lately, I’ve been reading Thinking Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman, whose work on judgment and decision-making almost cannot be over-stated in its importance (hey, he won a Nobel Prize for it, and there isn’t even a Nobel for psychology!). In the book, Kahneman discusses early conversations with his long-time collaborator Amos Tversky and how he came Continue Reading
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8:44 PM | Grey Literature at Wageningen UR, the Library, the Cloud(s) and Reporting
A while back I gave a presentation at the offices of SURF during a small scale seminar on Grey Literature in the Netherlands. The occasion was the visit of Amanda Lawrence to SURF to discuss Grey Literature in the Netherlands. I was invited to give a presentation of Grey Literature at Wageningen UR. The slides […] The post Grey Literature at Wageningen UR, the Library, the Cloud(s) and Reporting appeared first on WoW! Wouter on the Web.
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1:46 PM | When you believe in things that you don’t understand
This would make Karl Popper cry. And, at the very end: The present results indicate that under certain, theoretically predictable circumstances, female ovulation—long assumed to be hidden—is in fact associated with a distinct, objectively observable behavioral display. This statement is correct—if you interpret the word “predictable” to mean “predictable after looking at your data.” P.S. […]The post When you believe in things that you don’t […]

April 14, 2014

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2:50 PM | Transitioning to Stan
Kevin Cartier writes: I’ve been happily using R for a number of years now and recently came across Stan. Looks big and powerful, so I’d like to pick an appropriate project and try it out. I wondered if you could point me to a link or document that goes into the motivation for this tool […]The post Transitioning to Stan appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.
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2:07 PM | Microbial Misadventures: A Malaria Outbreak Without Mosquitoes
Microbial Misadventures is a recurring series on Body Horrors looking at instances and incidents where human meets microbe in novel and unusual circumstances that challenge our assumptions about how infections are spread.  Shout “fire” in a crowded room and watch the occupants fly for the exits. Speak the word “malaria” and watch as all within earshot […]The post Microbial Misadventures: A Malaria Outbreak Without Mosquitoes appeared first on Body […]
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1:01 PM | Is it possible to forge your own signature?
It’s true for everyone that no two signatures are identical, at least in the sense that no two periods on a page are identical. It’s a little more true for me. My signature is sloppy, but I’ve never been called out on it until now. I’ve been trying to get a credit card and the […]
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1:00 PM | On deck this week
Mon: Transitioning to Stan Tues: When you believe in things that you don’t understand Wed: Looking for Bayesian expertise in India, for the purpose of analysis of sarcoma trials Thurs: If you get to the point of asking, just do it. But some difficulties do arise . . . Fri: One-tailed or two-tailed? Sat: Index […]The post On deck this week appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.

April 13, 2014

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8:37 PM | Karen Calhoun on digital libraries
Review of : Calhoun, K. 2014. Exploring digital libraries : Foundations, practices, prospects. Chicago: Neal-Schuman. 322p. As a library practitioner I am always a bit weary about the term digital libraries. I have had sincere doubts about the role of library practitioners in digital libraries “some would argue that digital libraries have very little to […] The post Karen Calhoun on digital libraries appeared first on WoW! Wouter on the Web.
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3:42 PM | Digging
Champaign-Urbana is finally experiencing beautiful spring weather after a brutal (for central Illinois) winter, so I spent Saturday afternoon digging out my garden and filling in the holes that my dogs have dug in the yard. As I pulled up chunks of grass + dirt, I had the idea to transplant these hunks to the Continue Reading
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5:26 AM | Green Thumbery: The Seedlings are Coming!
Okay, it’s not Friday, but I owe you guys a Green Thumbery post. Plus I spent part of yesterday turning over the soil in the two beds I’ll be planting this spring, and I’m eager to... -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
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5:26 AM | Green Thumbery: The Seedlings are Coming!
Okay, it’s not Friday, but I owe you guys a Green Thumbery post. Plus I spent part of yesterday turning over the soil in the two beds I’ll be planting this spring, and I’m eager to... -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

April 12, 2014

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6:17 PM | “If you are primarily motivated to make money, you . . . certainly don’t want to let people know how confused you are by something, or how shallow your knowledge is in certain areas. You want to project an image of mastery and omniscience.”
A reader writes in: This op-ed made me think of one your recent posts. Money quote: If you are primarily motivated to make money, you just need to get as much information as you need to do your job. You don’t have time for deep dives into abstract matters. You certainly don’t want to let […]The post “If you are primarily motivated to make money, you . . . certainly don’t want to let people know how confused you are by something, or how shallow your knowledge is in […]
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1:41 PM | “Schools of statistical thoughts are sometimes jokingly likened to religions. This analogy is not perfect—unlike religions, statistical methods have no supernatural content and make essentially no demands on our personal lives. Looking at the comparison from the other direction, it is possible to be agnostic, atheistic, or simply live one’s life without religion, but it is not really possible to do statistics without some philosophy.”
This bit is perhaps worth saying again, especially given the occasional trolling on the internet by people who disparage their ideological opponents by calling them “religious” . . . So here it is: Sometimes the choice of statistical philosophy is decided by convention or convenience. . . . In many settings, however, we have freedom […]The post “Schools of statistical thoughts are sometimes jokingly likened to religions. This analogy is not perfect—unlike […]
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