Blog Archives

What is probabilistic truth? Part 2 – Everything is conditional

May 24, 2013
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What is probabilistic truth? Part 2 – Everything is conditional

Read Part 1 When making a statement of the form “1/2 is the correct probability that this coin will land tails”, there are a few things which are left unsaid, but which are typically implied. The statement is one about the probability of an unknown event occurring, and it would seem reasonable to write this

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What is probabilistic truth?

May 18, 2013
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What is probabilistic truth?

I am currently working on a validation metric for binary prediction models. That is, models which make predictions about outcomes that can take on either of two possible states (eg Dead/not dead, heads/tails, cat in picture/no cat in picture, etc.) The most commonly used metric for this class of models is AUC, which assesses the

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CAISN

May 7, 2013
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CAISN

Reblogged from Zero to R Hero: Canadian Aquatic Invasive Species Networks Annual General Meeting in Kananaskis, Alberta. May 03, 3:25-5:30. This 2-hour workshop will focus on how and why we do numerical simulation in R. Time permitting, we will also look at how to build and fit likelihood based statistical models. We ask that you bring your

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Mathematical abstraction and the robustness to assumptions

April 12, 2013
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Mathematical abstraction and the robustness to assumptions

I’ve been showing my new favourite toys to just about anyone foolish enough to actually engage me in conversation. I described how my shiny new set of non-transitive dice work here, complete with a map showing all the relevant probabilities. All was neat and tidy and wonderful until fellow ecologist, Aaron Ball, tried to burst

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A quick guide to non-transitive Grime Dice

April 7, 2013
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A quick guide to non-transitive Grime Dice

A very special package that I am rather excited about arrived in the mail recently. The package contained a set of 6-sided dice. These dice, however, don’t have the standard numbers one to six on their faces. Instead, they have assorted numbers between zero and nine. Here’s the exact configuration: Aside from maybe making for

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Open Data Exchange 2013, April 6. Montreal

March 29, 2013
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Open Data Exchange 2013, April 6. Montreal

UPDATE: The day was great! There are many people doing really amazing things with open data and it was amazing to meet them. Here are my slides from the panel talk. Next Saturday, I’ll be sitting on a panel discussing future avenues for open data at ODX13. From the odx13 site: Odx13 is a mini-conference

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Introduction to Simulation using R

March 23, 2013
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Introduction to Simulation using R

We had a great turnout yesterday for our Zero to R Hero workshop at the Quebec Centre for Biodiversity Science. We went from the absolute basics of the command line, to the intricacies of importing data, and finally we had a look at plotting using ggplot2. We didn’t have time to get to this extra module

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The Gambling Machine Puzzle

March 9, 2013
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The Gambling Machine Puzzle

This puzzle came up in the New York Times Number Play blog. It goes like this: An entrepreneur has devised a gambling machine that chooses two independent random variables x and y that are uniformly and independently distributed between 0 and 100. He plans to tell any customer the value of x and to ask him

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Montreal R User group meetup at Wajam

January 21, 2013
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Montreal R User group meetup at Wajam

This Thursday (Jan 24th), 5:30pm, the good folks at Wajam are hosting a meetup of the Montreal R User Group. The event will be at Bolidea at 4115 St Laurent, Montréal, QC. Be sure to RSVP. From Benjamin Rollert: This is an opportunity for people interested in R to hang out at our office, eat

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Dark matter top 10, but an hour too late

December 16, 2012
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Dark matter top 10, but an hour too late

Well, that’s embarrassing. A little tweak to my dark matter model resulted in a leaderboard score in the top 10. The only problem is that the contest closed about an hour ago. I ran this final prediction earlier today but then simply forgot to go back to it and submit!! On the bright side, I

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