Blog Archives

Edward Tufte’s Slopegraphs and political fortunes in Ontario

May 21, 2018
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Edward Tufte’s Slopegraphs and political fortunes in Ontario

With fewer than three weeks left in the June 7 provincial elections in Ontario, Canada’s most populous province with 14.2 million persons, the expected outcome is far from certain.The weekly opinion polls reflect the volatility in public opinion. Progressive Conservatives (PC), one of the main opposition parties, is in the lead with the support of roughly 40 percent of...

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R: simple for complex tasks, complex for simple tasks

March 10, 2018
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R: simple for complex tasks, complex for simple tasks

When it comes to undertaking complex data science projects, R is the preferred choice for many. Why? Because handling complex tasks is simpler in R than other comparable platforms. Regrettably, the same is not true for performing simpler tasks, which I would argue is rather complex in base R. Hence, the title -- R: simple for complex tasks, complex for...

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Is it time to ditch the Comparison of Means (T) Test?

March 7, 2018
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Is it time to ditch the Comparison of Means (T) Test?

For over a century, academics have been teaching the Student’s T-test and practitioners have been running it to determine if the mean values of a variable for two groups were statistically different. It is time to ditch the Comparison of Means (T) Test and rely instead on the ordinary least squares (OLS) Regression. My motivation for this suggestion is...

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Data Science 101, now online

September 14, 2016
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We are delighted to note that IBM's BigDataUniversity.com has launched the quintessential introductory course on data science aptly named Data Science 101.The target audience for the course is the uninitiated cohort that is curious about data science and would like to take the baby steps to a career in data and analytics. Needless to say, the course is for absolute beginners.To...

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The X-Factors: Where 0 means 1

September 1, 2016
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The X-Factors: Where 0 means 1

Hadley Wickham in a recent blog post mentioned that "Factors have a bad rap in R because they often turn up when you don’t want them." I believe Factors are an even bigger concern. They not only turn up where you don't want them, but they also turn things around when you don't want them to.Consider the following example where...

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Five Questions about Data Science

August 21, 2016
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Five Questions about Data Science

From Safari Books Online (https://www.safaribooksonline.com/blog/2016/02/10/data-science-qa/) ---Recently, we were able to ask five questions of Murtaza Haider, about the new book from IBM Press called “Getting Started with Data Science: Making Sense of Data with Analytics.” Below, the author talks about the benefits of data science in today’s professional world.1. What are some examples of data science altering or impacting traditional...

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So you want to be a data scientist

August 10, 2016
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So you want to be a data scientist

From HuffingtonPostThe New York Times made it look so easy. Take a few courses in data science and a web-based startup will readily pay top dollars for your newly acquired skills.Since the McKinsey Global Institute reported on the impending shortage of data crunchers, the wanna be data scientists are searching for learning opportunities in big data analytics. Newspaper coverage suggests that even with...

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Book Review: Getting Started With Data Science

July 27, 2016
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I PROGRAMMER's Kay Ewbank's reviews Getting Started with Data Science: Making Sense of Data with Analytics.By Kay EwbankIf you've enjoyed books such as Freakonomics or Outliers, you'll feel at home reading this book as it uses a similar approach; take an interesting question such as 'Does the higher price of cigarettes deter smoking?', and use that as the basis for...

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Book Review: Getting Started With Data Science

July 27, 2016
By

I PROGRAMMER's Kay Ewbank's reviews Getting Started with Data Science: Making Sense of Data with Analytics.By Kay EwbankIf you've enjoyed books such as Freakonomics or Outliers, you'll feel at home reading this book as it uses a similar approach; take an interesting question such as 'Does the higher price of cigarettes deter smoking?', and use that as the basis for...

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The collaborative innovation landscape in data science

July 24, 2016
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Computing platforms should be like Lego. That is, they should provide the fundamental building blocks and enable the users' imagination to innovate. The latest issue of Stata Journal exemplifies how Stata and, by the same account, R provide the platform for the users to innovate beyond the innate capacity of the core group responsible for software development. Earlier in July,...

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