Blog Archives

A slice of infinity

July 27, 2011
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A slice of infinity

Peng Yu sent me an email about the conditions for convergence of a Gibbs sampler: The following statement mentions convergence. But I’m not familiar what the regularity condition is. “But it is necessary to have a finite probability of moving away from the current state at all times in order to satisfy the regularity conditions on which

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Bayesian Core and loose logs

July 26, 2011
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Bayesian Core and loose logs

Jean-Michel (aka Jean-Claude!) Marin came for a few days so that we could make late progress on the revision of our book Bayesian Core towards an Use R! version. In one of the R programs in the mixture chapter, we were getting improbable answers, until we found an R mistake in the shape of which

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Ternary sorting

July 24, 2011
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Ternary sorting

The last Le Monde puzzle made me wonder about the ternary version of the sorting algorithms, which all seem to be binary (compare x and y, then…). The problem is, given (only) a blackbox procedure that returns the relative order of three arbitrary numbers, how many steps are necessary to sort a series of n

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Le Monde puzzle [#28]

July 22, 2011
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Le Monde puzzle [#28]

The puzzle of last weekend in Le Monde was about finding the absolute rank of x9 when given the relative ranks of x1,….,x8 and the possibility to ask for relative ranks of three numbers at a time. In R terms, this means being able to use or yet being able to sort the first 8

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The foundations of Statistics [reply]

July 18, 2011
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The foundations of Statistics [reply]

Shravan Vasishth has written a response to my review both published on the Statistics Forum. His response is quite straightforward and honest. In particular, he acknowledges not being a statistician and that he “should spend more time studying statistics”. I also understand the authors’ frustration at trying “to recruit several statisticians (at different points) to

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Accepted lack of confidence

July 17, 2011
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Accepted lack of confidence

I just got the following email from PNAS about our Lack of confidence in ABC model choice. Editor's Remarks to Author: both referees now find the manuscript acceptable for publication as do I. Each suggests small changes which I encourage the authors to make prior to having the manuscript go into production. Congratulations on an

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About Fig. 4 of Fagundes et al. (2007)

July 12, 2011
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About Fig. 4 of Fagundes et al. (2007)

Yesterday, we had a meeting of our EMILE network on statistics for population genetics (in Montpellier) and we were discussing our respective recent advances in ABC model choice. One of our colleagues mentioned the constant request (from referees) to include the post-ABC processing devised by Fagundes et al. in their 2007 ABC paper. (This paper

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The foundations of Statistics: a simulation-based approach

July 11, 2011
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The foundations of Statistics: a simulation-based approach

“We have seen that a perfect correlation is perfectly linear, so an imperfect correlation will be `imperfectly linear’.” page 128 This book has been written by two linguists, Shravan Vasishth and Michael Broe, in order to teach statistics “in  areas that are traditionally not mathematically demanding” at a deeper level than traditional textbooks “without using

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Bounded target support

July 4, 2011
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Bounded target support

Here is an interesting question from Tomàs that echoes a lot of related emails: I’m turning to you for advice. I’m facing problem  where parameter space is bounded, e.g. all parameters have to be positive. If in MCMC as proposal distribution I use normal distribution, then at some iterations I get negative proposals. So my

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density()

June 27, 2011
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density()

Following my earlier posts on the revision of Lack of confidence, here is an interesting outcome from the derivation of the exact marginal likelihood in the Laplace case. Computing the posterior probability of a normal model versus a Laplace model in the normal (gold) and the Laplace (chocolate) settings leads to the above histogram(s), which

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