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Archive of posts filed under the Decision Theory category.

On deck this week

Mon: “Regular Customer: It was so much easier when I was a bum. I didn’t have to wake up at 4am to go to work, didn’t have all these bills and girlfriends.” Tues: Rational != Self-interested Wed: When there’s a lot of variation, it can be a mistake to make statements about “typical” attitudes Thurs: […]

On deck this month

Lots of good stuff in the queue: “Regular Customer: It was so much easier when I was a bum. I didn’t have to wake up at 4am to go to work, didn’t have all these bills and girlfriends.” Rational != Self-interested When there’s a lot of variation, it can be a mistake to make statements […]

On deck this week

Mon: Some general principles of Bayesian data analysis, arising from a Stan analysis of John Lee Anderson’s height Tues: Are Ivy League schools overrated? Wed: Can anyone guess what went wrong here? Thurs: What went wrong Fri: 65% of principals say that at least 30% of students . . . wha?? Sat: Carrie McLaren was […]

Some will spam you with a six-gun and some with a fountain pen

A few weeks ago the following came in the email: Dear Professor Gelman, I am writing you because I am a prospective doctoral student with considerable interest in your research. My name is Xian Zhao, but you can call me by my English name Alex, a student from China. My plan is to apply to […]

On deck this week

Mon: Some will spam you with a six-gun and some with a fountain pen Tues: Why I’m still not persuaded by the claim that subliminal smiley-faces can have big effects on political attitudes Wed: Study published in 2011, followed by successful replication in 2003 [sic] Thurs: Waic for time series Fri: MA206 Program Director’s Memorandum Sat: “An […]

I can’t think of a good title for this one.

Andrew Lee writes: I recently read in the MIT Technology Review about some researchers claiming to remove “bias” from the wisdom of crowds by focusing on those more “confident” in their views. I [Lee] was puzzled by this result/claim because I always thought that people who (1) are more willing to reassess their priors and […]

What does CNN have in common with Carmen Reinhart, Kenneth Rogoff, and Richard Tol: They all made foolish, embarrassing errors that would never have happened had they been using R Markdown

Rachel Cunliffe shares this delight: Had the CNN team used an integrated statistical analysis and display system such as R Markdown, nobody would’ve needed to type in the numbers by hand, and the above embarrassment never would’ve occurred. And CNN should be embarrassed about this: it’s much worse than a simple typo, as it indicates […]

On deck this week

Mon: More bad news for the buggy-whip manufacturers Tues: They know my email but they don’t know me Wed: What do you do to visualize uncertainty? Thurs: Sokal: “science is not merely a bag of clever tricks . . . Rather, the natural sciences are nothing more or less than one particular application — albeit […]

Six quotes from Kaiser Fung

You may think you have all of the data. You don’t. One of the biggest myth of Big Data is that data alone produce complete answers. Their “data” have done no arguing; it is the humans who are making this claim. Before getting into the methodological issues, one needs to ask the most basic question. […]

“It’s as if you went into a bathroom in a bar and saw a guy pissing on his shoes, and instead of thinking he has some problem with his aim, you suppose he has a positive utility for getting his shoes wet”

The notion of a geocentric universe has come under criticism from Copernican astronomy. . . . A couple months ago in a discussion of differences between econometrics and statistics, I alluded to the well-known fact that everyday uncertainty aversion can’t be explained by a declining marginal utility of money. What really bothers me—it’s been bothering […]