Monthly Archives: October 2012

Allstate compares SAS, Hadoop and R for Big-Data Insurance Models

October 25, 2012
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Allstate compares SAS, Hadoop and R for Big-Data Insurance Models

At the Strata conference in New York today, Steve Yun (Principal Predictive Modeler at Allstate's Research and Planning Center) described the various ways he tackled the problem of fitting a generalized linear model to 150M records of insurance data. He evaluated several approaches: Proc GENMOD in SAS Installing a Hadoop cluster Using open-source R (both on the full data...

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Notes on a Scandal – When Jimmy beat Katy

October 25, 2012
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Notes on a Scandal  – When Jimmy beat Katy

No the title doesn’t refer to how Katy Perry suffered at another of Jimmy Savile’s sexual predelictions, although these are two of  the participants. I’ll get to the details later Just over a year ago, I reflected on the relative wiki searches of leading female singing celebrities, including Ms Perry. In the light of the

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Palettes in R

October 25, 2012
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Palettes in R

In its simplest form, a palette in R is simply a vector of colors. This vector can be include the hex triplet or R color names.The default palette can be seen through palette(): > palette("default") # you'll only need this line if you've previ...

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NSCB Sexy Statistics (Unemployment)

October 25, 2012
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NSCB Sexy Statistics (Unemployment)

Recently, my friend posted on her Facebook account about the article published by the National Statistical Coordination Board (NSCB) about poverty and unemployment in the country.  Looking at the report I saw a lot of tables, so I thought why not ...

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How fat are your tails?

October 25, 2012
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How fat are your tails?

Lately I’ve been thinking about how to measure the fatness of the tails of a distribution. After some searching, I came across the Pareto Tail Index method. This seems to be used mostly in economics. It works by finding the decay rate of the tail. It’s complicated, both in formula and in it’s R implementation

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Congressional ideology by state

October 25, 2012
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Congressional ideology by state

In a recent post, I illustrated how to add a background geom to your ggplot. While that code worked, and the plot looked fine, it was pointed out to me that I was missing an important aspect of plot layering with ggplot2. Namely, it is not, as I previ...

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R function: generate a panel data.table or data.frame to fill with data

October 25, 2012
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I have started to work with R and STATA together. I like running regressions in STATA, but I do graphs and setting up the dataset in R. R clearly has a strong comparative advantage here compared to STATA. I was writing a function that will give me a (balanced) panel-structure in R. It then simply

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Rcpp modules more flexible

October 25, 2012
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Rcpp modules just got more flexible (as of revision 3838 of Rcpp, to become 0.9.16 in the future). modules have allowed exposing C++ classes for some time now, but developpers had to declare custom wrap and as specializations if they wanted their classes to be used as return type or argument type of a C++ function or method....

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Nonnegative Matrix Factorization and Recommendor Systems

October 24, 2012
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Nonnegative Matrix Factorization and Recommendor Systems

Albert Au Yeung provides a very nice tutorial on non-negative matrix factorization and an implementation in python. This is based very loosely on his approach. Suppose we have the following matrix of users and ratings on movies:If we use the information above to form a matrix R it can be decomposed into two matrices...

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Quick notes from Strata NYC 2012

October 24, 2012
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The O'Reilly Strata conferences are always great fun to attend, and this latest installment in New York City is no exception. This one is super-busy though; the conference has been sold out for weeks -- and not just marketing-sold-out, it's fire-department-sold out. It's non-stop conversations and presentations, and it's tough to move through the hallways in between. Nonetheless, I...

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