Blog Archives

Friday quote: what is the question to which this number is the answer?

August 26, 2011
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Friday quote: what is the question to which this number is the answer?

John Kay muses on interpreting statistical data: Always ask of such data “what is the question to which this number is the answer?”. “Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation on a like-for-like basis before allowance for exceptional restructuring costs” is the answer to the question “what is the highest profit number we can present without attracting flat disbelief?”.

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A warning on the R save format

August 23, 2011
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A warning on the R save format

The save() function in the R platform for statistical computing is very convenient and I suspect many of us use it a lot. But I was recently bitten by a “feature” of the format which meant I could not recover my data. I recommend that you save data in a data format (e.g. CSV or CDF), not using...

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A warning on the R save format

August 23, 2011
By
A warning on the R save format

The save() function in the R platform for statistical computing is very convenient and I suspect many of us use it a lot. But I was recently bitten by a “feature” of the format which meant I could not recover my data. I recommend that you save data in a data format (e.g. CSV or CDF), not using...

Read more »

A warning on the R save format

August 23, 2011
By
A warning on the R save format

The save() function in the R platform for statistical computing is very convenient and I suspect many of us use it a lot. But I was recently bitten by a “feature” of the format which meant I could not recover my data.

Read more »

Friday quote: the handmaiden and the whore

August 19, 2011
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Friday quote: the handmaiden and the whore

Because it is Friday and because we collect quotes: If mathematics is the handmaiden of science, statistics is the whore: all that scientists are looking for is a quick fix without the encumbrance of a meaningful relationship. Statisticians are second-class mathematicians, third-rate scientists and fourth-rate thinkers. They are the hyenas, jackals and vultures of the scientific ecology: picking...

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Friday quote: the handmaiden and the whore

August 19, 2011
By
Friday quote: the handmaiden and the whore

Because it is Friday and because we collect quotes: If mathematics is the handmaiden of science, statistics is the whore: all that scientists are looking for is a quick fix without the encumbrance of a meaningful relationship. Statisticians are second-class mathematicians, third-rate scientists and fourth-rate thinkers. They are the hyenas, jackals and vultures of the scientific...

Read more »

Spreadsheet errors

April 20, 2011
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Spreadsheet errors

For my sins, I have done more than my fair share of analysis in Excel. I am quite capable of building and maintaining 130Mb spreadsheets (I had a dozen of them for one client). Excel is pretty much installed everywhere, so it is sometimes the only way to get started getting commercial value of the data in the...

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Spreadsheet errors

April 20, 2011
By
Spreadsheet errors

For my sins, I have done more than my fair share of analysis in Excel. I am quite capable of building and maintaining 130Mb spreadsheets (I had a dozen of them for one client). Excel is pretty much installed everywhere, so it is sometimes the only way...

Read more »

Spreadsheet errors

April 20, 2011
By
Spreadsheet errors

For my sins, I have done more than my fair share of analysis in Excel. I am quite capable of building and maintaining 130Mb spreadsheets (I had a dozen of them for one client). Excel is pretty much installed everywhere, so it is sometimes the only way...

Read more »

Spreadsheet errors

April 20, 2011
By
Spreadsheet errors

For my sins, I have done more than my fair share of analysis in Excel. I am quite capable of building and maintaining 130Mb spreadsheets (I had a dozen of them for one client). Excel is pretty much installed everywhere, so it is sometimes the only way to get started getting commercial value of the data in the organisation. But I don’t like it...

Read more »

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