Friday, December 20, 2013

Dinosaurs and Statistics

Dr. Nathan Myhrvold's "Revisiting the Estimation of Dinosaur Growth Rates" was recently featured in the New York Times:

Histogram Tools

HistogramTools is an R package that gives functions for subsetting, trimming, merging, adding, and otherwise manipulating basic R histogram objects. Read more at:

Naming Objects in R

You can name an R object anything. ANYTHING. You can even use unicode for object names. However, if you want to use wacky names, you have to be willing to give the interpreter some clues. Here is how you can do that:

Monday, December 16, 2013

Dennis Lindley 1923 - 2013

We are very sad to learn of the death of Professor Dennis V. Lindley. Lindley was one of the founding fathers of Bayesian statistics, who celebrated his 90th birthday earlier this year.

You may read his recent interviews at:

Colleagues pay tribute to the late Professor Dennis Lindley:

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Celebrating Statisticians

In celebration of the International Year of Statistics, here are articles about some celebrated Statisticians

Richard Price, Bayes’ theorem, and God

Bayes’ theorem is 250 years old this year. But did the Rev. Thomas Bayes actually devise it? Martyn Hooper presents the case for the extraordinary Richard Price, friend of US presidents, mentor, pamphleteer, economist, and above all preacher. And did Price develop Bayes’ theorem in order to prove the existence of God?

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Why Statistics?

Ever met with people who ask what do Statisticians exactly do?
Here is a video of a talk given by Dr. Anil Gore at IUCAA @InnoVidya. Don't miss to enjoy..

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Fiddling with R

Don't have R installed on your computer, no worries!! You can always fiddle around in a browser:

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Statistics, your friend in daily life

..whether you like it or not. As we are 88% through the Celebratory year, here is a report on Statisticians partying:

Friday, November 15, 2013

Why Traffic Congestions Happen

You're on the freeway, traffic is moving along, and for no apparent reason everyone slows down. And eventually, for no apparent reason, traffic starts back up again. Hit the brakes in the simulation, and you'll see what happens:

Faster For Loops in R

Here is a way to make your for loops run faster:

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Value of pictures

"The greatest value of a picture is when it forces us to notice what we never expected to see." 
- John W. Tukey

Beyond piquing our interest, mathematical images can also serve as tools for solving problems or even as explanations for already conjectured ideas.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Basics of Histograms

Histograms are used very often to show the distributions of variables. Although the basic command for histograms in R is simple, getting histogram to look exactly like you want takes getting to know a few options of the plot. Here are some ways to customize your histogram for your needs:

Maximum Likelihood versus Goodness of Fit

If we have an i.i.d. sample, which can be modeled using two different families of distributions, how do we choose the best one:

Sunday, November 10, 2013

How much a Statistician earns?

If you are planning to go to USA, which job would be most rewarding:

Evergrowing CRAN

The number of CRAN packages has been increasing rapidly recently. There were about 4200 pacakges available when R 2.15.2 was released on October 26, 2012. As of today, there are 749 additional packages in the Bioconductor repository, and hundreds more R packages on GitHub. In any case, there are easily more than 6000 open-source R packages available. Here is a report:

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Predict your h-index

The "scholar" package provides functions to extract citation data from Google Scholar. In addition to retrieving basic information about a single scholar, the package also allows you to compare multiple scholars and predict future h-index values. Here are some quick highlights:

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Statistics making the impact

The list of 17 equations that changed the World includes:

  • The Normal distribution
  • Shannon's information theory
  • The logistic model for population growth
  • The Black Scholes model

Sunday, October 20, 2013

R usage Skyrocketing

Which software, according to you, data miners and analytics professionals prefer??

Friday, October 11, 2013

International Statistics Quiz for School-Aged Learners

Developed by the Royal Statistical Society's Centre for Statistical Education, Stats2013AtSchool is a world statistics quiz for learners across the world. Check it out!

Drawing Smooth Curves

In how many ways can one add a curve to a scatter plot..??

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Degrees in Statistics.. see how the trend goes in US universities

The 2012 statistics degree data recently released by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) show that interest in undergraduate statistics degrees continues to grow rapidly. See the link below for details:

Monday, October 7, 2013

Financial Data Accessible from R

The following post lists the sources and types of financial data that is accessible directly from R:

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Using apply, sapply, lapply in R

Here is an introductory post about using apply, sapply and lapply, best suited for people relatively new to R or unfamiliar with these functions:

Spread of Internet Population

Mark Graham and Stefano De Sabbata for Information Geographies mapped the most visited site based on Alexa data. Countries are sized by Internet population. There aren't many surprises with Facebook and Google in the Americas and and Europe, but it gets more interesting when you look elsewhere.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Tweet: "If the normal curve was not discovered..

The Fields Institute for Research in Mathematical Sciences at the University of Toronto is sponsoring a Twitter contest called “The Normal Curve”. In this unique contest, the Institute poses this question to the world: “What would the world be like if the normal curve was not discovered?” Hurry up and tweet before 15th October, 2013. Details can be found at:

Give it your best shot

Get your camera and your photographic eye ready for the newly announced International Year of Statistics (Statistics2013) photo contest! This new competition, called the Statistics2013 Photo Contest, is for secondary-school students (grades/years 7-12) around the world. Hurry up and click before 1st December. Details can be found at:

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Reliability Mathematics

What is the cost of extending a warranty for a car? You might be interested to know. Mathematica is there to help you with an answer:

Saturday, September 28, 2013

R User Group Sponsorship

Revolution’s 2014 R User Group Sponsorship Program Begins October 1st! If you are interested, have a look at:

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Waiting in One Line or Multiple Lines

As a statistician, what is better, having a single queue or multiple queues, in regard with waiting time? Have a look at the following link:

Monday, September 23, 2013

Understanding Simpson's Paradox

When you look for overall trends, you often poke around the data in aggregate, but when you zoom out too far, you could miss details or within-category variation. Sometimes when you zoom in, you see a completely opposite trend of what you saw overall. This is known as Simpson's Paradox.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Unlawful primes

How small can a description of a large prime number be? 
If you have just zeros and two ones, then the only primes of that form are 11 and 101. If there are three ones then it is divisible by three. But what about four ones? Have a look at:

The Ultimatum Game

The ultimatum game was first presented to the research community in 1982 in an article entitled 'An Experimental Analysis of Ultimatum Bargaining'. The article discusses interesting results regarding the subjects' natural reactions and strategies for bargaining:

The Happiest Emoticons

Clearly, a :) is happier than a :( but what about a :-* and a :-D ? Or a :-| and a :-o ? In this post the author attempts to rank emoticons in order of how happy someone has to be to use each one:

A Lesson on Derivatives

"A Lesson on Derivatives” by Sungkon Chang featured in the October 2012 issue of The American Mathematical Monthly.

Medical Research is Better Because of Statistics

Friday, September 13, 2013

Only Load Data If Not Already Open in R

It is beneficial to check whether or not a dataset is already loaded into R at the beginning of a file. This is particularly helpful when you are dealing with a large file that you don't want to load repeatedly. Here is a way to do it:

Friday, September 6, 2013

Man Who Invented Modern Probability

It is oddly appropriate that a chance event drove Kolmogorov into the arms of probability theory, which at the time was a maligned sub-discipline of mathematics and was mocked at as "Theory of Misfortune". Kolmogorov presented a radical and, ultimately, foundational revision of probability theory using measure theory. 
For Kolmogorov, his ideas neither eliminated chance, nor affirmed a fundamental uncertainty about our world; they simply provided a rigorous language to talk about what cannot be known for certain.

The ROC curves of science

In practice, there is an inverse relationship between increasing rates of true discoveries and decreasing rates of false discoveries and that true discoveries from fields such as the biomedical sciences provide an enormous benefit to society. Few will deny that our current system, with all its flaws, still produces important discoveries. Want to find an optimal way out, the solution might be through ROC curves:

Also, here is Andrew Gelman's recent post on what he calls the "scientific mass production of spurious statistical significance":

Residuals from a logistic regression

What could be done with a graph of residuals, obtained from a logistic regression ?

John W. Tukey

“Statistics is a science in my opinion, and it is no more a branch of mathematics than are physics, chemistry and economics; for if its methods fail the test of experience – not the test of logic – they are discarded.”

Box plot, stem and leaf plot, ANOVA and, yes, even bit, software and vacuum cleaner are terms coined by John Wilder Tukey. Read more about him at

Interviews with Dennis Lindley

“Ultimately, in my extreme view, all reasoning reduces to probability calculations"

As a school student, Dennis Lindley had wanted to be an architect, but advice from his teachers led him to work on statistics instead. In communication with Helen Joyce, he offers a more personal description of his life as a Bayesian.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Is a Master’s degree in Statistics worthwhile?

If you care about understanding data.. Yes!!

A student who is considering a Master’s degree in Statistics asks, “I’m interested in finding a job in data analysis and have been looking around, but I’m not sure if a masters is necessary to break into the field”. Here is a discussion about the same

Global Wealth Inequality

Infographics showing an interesting aspect of World economy.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Thomas Bayes

Thomas Bayes, a minister and mathematician whose name is literally attached to statistical inference. Very few details are known about Bayes, but his impact on statistics and science in general is remarkable considering that he published only two papers in his lifetime. His simply stated law of conditional probabilities has led to an incredibly powerful and popular branch of statistics.

Significance of Statistics

Statistics ... the most important science in the whole world: for upon it depends the practical application of every other science and of every art; the one science essential to all political and social administration, all education, all organization based upon experience, for it only gives the results of our experience.
- Florence Nightingale

Statistical Significance series highlights the important contributions that statisticians make to society, from healthcare and economy to national security and the environment.


Internet Searches are Faster Thanks to Statistics

As the size of the Web grows exponentially, one needs to develop faster algorithms which can produce results in a split-second. This can be done only with the help of statistics. Without statistics we would have to search the Internet one site at a time...

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Alumni Meet at Univ. of Pune

The Department of Statistics, University of Pune is celebrating its Diamond Jubilee Year & International Year of Statistics by organizing an International Conference
On this occasion, a meeting of the alumni will be held on December 15, 2013. For details please visit:

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Statisticians: an endangered species?

Nowadays mainstream academic statisticians as being left behind by the rise of Big Data, some trapped in moribund departments that are unwilling to change, overlooked by university administrators who see them as “small data” scholars without the tools for “Big Data” and “Big Questions” and surprised to find out that they, indeed, are not data scientists. So what skills does a statistician need to engage in data science activities, and how should we be preparing statistics students?

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

2013 ISI Jan Tinbergen Awards

Mr. Abhik Ghosh from India has been declared the winner of Jan Tinbergen Award. For a complete list of winners, have a look at:

The Awards will be presented to the winners at the ISI/Associations’ Awards Ceremony on 29th August, in Hong Kong.

In Praise of Simplicity not Mathematistry

"In Praise of Simplicity not Mathematistry! Ten Simple Powerful Ideas for the Statistical Scientist"
Access this featured article from Journal of the American Statistical Association

Friday, July 26, 2013

What is R?

Very cool and interesting, 90-second video, all about the history, community and applications of R !!!
A must watch for all R-users.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

The truth of infinite series

"If you disregard the very simplest cases, there is in all of mathematics not a single infinite series whose sum has been rigorously determined. In other words, the most important parts of mathematics stand without a foundation"
- Niels H. Abel (1802 - 1829)

Mathematica Walks on IMDb’s Top Films

If you wanted to see the top 250 movies of all time, what order should you watch them in? Based on what you just saw, how can I suggest a few relevant movies? Here is Mathematica helping out the movie buffs.. using Graph theory and Markov Processes!!

Saturday, July 13, 2013

A computational knowledge engine

Wlfram|Alpha- not a search engine, not an encyclopedia, not a calculator, but it's a little bit of all of that .. a computational knowledge engine.

Friday, July 12, 2013

The Mathematics of Queues

Queues play an important role in our lives, and it seems worthwhile to spend some time understanding their dynamics, with a view to answering questions such as, “How many tellers does your bank need to provide good customer service?” or “How can you speed up the security check?” or “On average, how long will you have to wait for technical support?” Here is a gentle introduction to Queueing theory

Thursday, July 11, 2013

World Population Day

In recognition of World Population Day 2013, Wiley and the nearly 2,100 other organizations in 124 countries participating in the International Year of Statistics (Statistics2013) are spotlighting the contributions of statisticians to quantify the world’s constantly growing population.

Friday, July 5, 2013

ISI 2013 Karl Pearson Prize

The inaugural Karl Pearson Prize has been awarded to Peter McCullagh & John Nelder for their monograph Generalized Linear Models

Friday, June 28, 2013

A picture is worth a thousand words

How useful different graphs and visualizations can be, for understand various aspects of the data..?? Here is an example: Analyses of the Best Undergraduate Business Schools of 2013

Split violin plots

Violin plots are useful for comparing distributions. When data are grouped by a factor with two levels (e.g. males and females), you can split the violins in half to see the difference between groups.

Is There Any Point to the 12 Times Table

Exactly why do we use times tables at all? If learning tables up to 10 is good, then learning them up to 12 is better. The typical error if you know up to your 10 times table is 9.4%. But if you know up to your 12 times table, it is only 8.2%. 

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Income inequality, real and personal

In a different take on the income inequality issue, the Economic Policy Institute, in collaboration with Periscopic, created

This website brings clarity to the national dialogue on wage and income inequality, using interactive tools and videos to tell the story of how we arrived at the state of inequality we find today and what can be done to reverse course and ensure workers get their fair share.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Can you correct a 300-year-old error?

A challenge: can you correct something that Jacob Bernoulli got wrong? It stayed wrong for nearly 300 years until our author, Professor Antony Edwards, spotted it and corrected it.  It is a simple exercise in schoolboy probability. It is Problem XVII in Part III of Bernoulli’s book. For those who would like to try their hand, here is the problem:

Here are some interesting articles about Ars Conjectandi:

Monday, June 17, 2013

On “Geek” Versus “Nerd”

Do you know the difference between Nerd and Geek ?? As J.R. Firth notes “You shall know a word by the company it keeps”, here is an analysis done on the basis of pointwise mutual information (PMI):

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Understanding Multicollinearity

Roughly speaking, Multicollinearity occurs when two or more regressors are highly correlated. Most of us  know what does it mean, how to detect it and are taught how to cope with it, but not why is it so. From Wikipedia: “In this situation (Multicollinearity) the coefficient estimates may change erratically in response to small changes in the model or the data.” The Wikipedia entry continues to discuss detection, implications and remedies. Here is an attempt to provide the intuition:

Top 100 R packages for 2013

Statistical analysis of R packages using R:

Monday, June 10, 2013

There Was a Time before Mathematica…

Here is Stephen Wolfram's story in his own words about how Mathematica was developed:

How to Do Statistical Research

The strategy: “develop theory/model/method, seek application" is a bad start in statistical research problems. If you seek an application after developing any theory, you don’t ask, “What is a reasonable way to answer this question, given this data, in this context?” Instead, you ask, “Can I answer the question with this data; in this context; with my theory, model, or method?” Who then considers whether a different (perhaps simpler) answer would have been better? Here is Terry Speed discussing this issue:

At what sample size do correlations stabilize?

Maybe you have encountered this situation: you run a large-scale study over the internet, and out of curiosity, you frequently check the correlation between two variables.

The experience with this practice is usually frustrating, as in small sample sizes correlations go up and down, change sign, move from “significant” to “non-significant” and back. So at what sample size do correlations stabilize?

Thursday, June 6, 2013

SAS Dominates Analytics Job Market; R up 42%

Here is an article giving interesting insights into the popularity of data analysis software:

A new Sudoku Solver in R.

Sudoku is nowadays probably the most widespread puzzle game in the world. As such, it has an interesting variety of solving techniques, not just with paper and pencil but also with computers. In R, there is even a package, dedicated exclusively to Sudokus. Here is one article discussing, how to develop an algorithm for solving Sudoku:

Saturday, May 4, 2013

All About Spherically Distributed Regression Errors

In our list of standard assumptions about the error term in linear multiple regression model, we include one that incorporates both homoskedasticity and the absence of autocorrelation. That is, the individual values of the errors are assumed to be generated by a random process whose variance is constant, and all possible distinct pairs of these values are uncorrelated. This implies that the full error vector has a scalar covariance matrix.
This overall situation is referred to as one in which the values of the error term follow a “Spherical Distribution”. Let's take a look at the origin of this terminology.

How R Grows

Tabulating the packages by publication date could give some indication of how much effort is being expended to improve packages and keep them up to date. Most CRAN packages which are available currently were either created or updated in the last year or so. Apparently, only 264 packages haven’t been touched since 2010 or before. Here is a graphical study of the same:

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Statistics2013 Video Contest Results

After 100 Years, Ramanujan Gap Filled

A century ago, Srinivasa Ramanujan and G. H. Hardy started a famous correspondence about mathematics so amazing that Hardy described it as “scarcely possible to believe.” In 1919 Ramanujan was deathly ill while on a long ride back to India, from February 27 to March 13 on the steamship Nagoya. All he had was a pen and pad of paper and he wanted to write down his equations before he died. He wrote an incomplete equation which has been solved after a gap of 100 years:

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Poor man’s integration – a simulated visualization approach

Following article discusses presentation of a function that can integrate an arbitrarily-defined curve using a less than quantitative approach, or in other words, poor man’s integration. If you are up to speed on the basics of calculus, you may recognize this approach as Monte Carlo integration. 

Saturday, April 27, 2013

FasteR! HigheR! StrongeR! – A Guide to Speeding Up R Code for Busy People

Code optimization is a matter is a matter of personal taste and priorities. There may be some ways of writing code that are better or worse, and there are definitely ways that will make it run faster, but before you dive into optimization, you may read the following:

Friday, April 26, 2013

Interesting articles on Bayesian Inference

The American Statistician is providing free access to the original articles as well as several comments, discussions and rejoinder pieces on Bayesian Inference for 90 days. Follow this link to begin your access today:

Below are a few of the articles included in this offer:

"Not Only Defended But Also Applied": The Perceived Absurdity of Bayesian Inference, Andrew Gelman and Christian P. Robert

Comment: Bayesian Inference: The Rodney Dangerfield of Statistics?, Stephen Stigler

Discussion: Bayesian Methods: Applied? Yes. Philosophical Defense? In Flux, Deborah G. Mayo

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Data Science of the Facebook World

A remarkable look at the Facebook world, and the trajectories of Facebook lives. Plus a great example of data science in the Wolfram Language.

Dust Off Your Math Skills: Actuary Is Best Job, a career website owned by Adicio Inc., ranked 200 jobs from best to worst based on five criteria: physical demands, work environment, income, stress, and hiring outlook

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Gertrude Mary Cox

Gertrude Mary Cox, one of the pioneers of academic statistics departments in the United States and one of the first female statisticians. She has been dubbed the "First Lady of Statistics".

How long is the average dissertation?

A major deterrent that keeps people away from graduate school is the requirement to write a dissertation or thesis. One often hears horror stories of the excessive page lengths that are expected. However, most don’t realize that dissertations are filled with lots of white space. The actual written portion may only account for less than 50% of the page length. Regardless, students tend to fixate on the ‘appropriate’ page length for a dissertation, as if it’s some sort of measure of how much work you’ve done to get your degree. Here is an interesting analysis on length of dissertations:

Monday, April 15, 2013

Happy Birthday Euler

Without question, Leonhard Euler (1707-1783) ranks among history's greatest mathematicians. Over six decades of unmatched productivity, and despite a visual impairment that grew ever worse, charted the course of mathematics throughout the eighteenth century and beyond. His reputation is captured in Laplace's famous admonition, "Read Euler, read Euler. He is the master of us all."

More Euler resources: 

V. S. Varadarajan writes about the many-sided genius in "Euler Through Time: A New Look at Old Themes"

The MAA Euler Archive

Ed Sandifer's “How Euler Did It” column archive

Check out winners of MAA’s Euler Book Prize

Read Loci: Convergence article “Euler Squares” by Elaine Young

Euler books in the MAA Store 

Friday, April 12, 2013

Big Discoveries have Humble Beginnings

Lloyd Shapley and David Gale wrote a paper in American Mathematical Monthly which lead to an Economics Nobel, proving that big discoveries have humble beginnings.

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Paul Erdős

"This week we celebrate the life of the most published mathematician in history, Paul Erdos (AIR-dosh) who was born 100 years ago on March 26," wrote Gary Antonick for The New York Times. "Dr. Erdos, who has been called the world’s greatest problem poser and solver, collaborated with over 500 mathematicians before his death in 1996." Read more at

Here are some more articles:

The Magician of Budapest by Peter Schumer (winner of the 1999 Trevor Evans Award)

Reminiscences of Paul Erdös (1913-1996) by the late Melvin Henriksen

Paul Erdos among the Dancing Saints by Gerald L. Alexanderson

Erdös Number 1 . . . for Mountain Climbing by Alfinio Flores

Paul Erdos: An Infinity of Problems by Ivars Peterson

Wednesday, March 13, 2013


In 1954 Tukey asked, “Does anyone know when the correlation coefficient is useful, as opposed to when it is used? What substitutes are better for which purposes?”

Here is Terry Speed's  musings about the same:

Monday, March 11, 2013

Times per second benchmark

In GNU R the simplest way to measure execution time of a piece code is to use system.time. However, sometimes one wants to find out how many times some function can be executed in one second. This is especially useful when we want to compare functions that have significantly different execution speed.
Check out this post:

The Statistician’s New Face

If today’s statistician is going to have a new face, what was the face of yesterday’s statistician? How often do we ‘see’ the modeler or the number cruncher doing his business? How often do we see the statistician come ‘onstage’ to explain his analysis?

Here is an article by Srinivas Bhogle pondering over these:

Friday, March 8, 2013

Can you name a female statistician?

Statistics are everywhere. And perhaps even more so this year, as 2013 has been hailed as the International Year of Statistics. Despite all this attention for numbers, we generally don't know a lot about the people hiding behind their computers churning them out. Some non-statisticians are now able to name at least one statistician, but, stepping it up a level, can you name a female statistician?

STEM Profession that Women Dominate

Do you know which major STEM field boasts as many women in the profession as men? Where almost half the college degrees - even at the PhD level - are granted to women? Where women have a significant presence in the most influential circles of the profession? We are proud that, it is Analytics. The number of women among mathematicians and statisticians equals the number of men.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Ballad for Statistics

To celebrate International Year of Statistics Prof. A. P. Gore (Former Head, Department of Statistics, University of Pune) has composed a Ballad for Statistics in English, as well as in Marathi.

Here are the lyrics for the same:

To make it more appealing to the common public, an audio with a catchy tune has also been created. Enjoy the songs:
To download, right click and select save link as.

Details of the Audio:
Music Composer - Ashish Kulkarni.
Singers (English) - Parashar Joshi, Pooja Tatvavadi & Megha Palkar
Singers (Marathi) - Kalyani Dasakkar, Ishwari Dasakkar & Ashwini Bhargave

Do multiple choice tests really work?

Have you ever thought.. How many gatecrashers can enter a merit list through a multiple choice tests? How much would you gain or loose by random guessing? How tests with multiple correct choices reduces the scourge due to random guessing?

Have a look at an interesting conversation between Srinivas Bhogle and Rajeeva Karandikar about validity of Multiple Choice Tests:

Understanding Citation Indices

Some love them, some hate them, but citation indices are heartily gobbled up by administrators in tenure and promotion decisions.  Here is Anirban DasGupta explaining the Citation Indices:

A World Without Referees

Every researcher has many stories about having papers rejected because of unfair referee reports. This happens because the refereeing process is very noisy, time consuming and arbitrary. Here is Larry Wasserman, sharing his views about the same:

IMS Bulletin Editor, Dimitris Politis writes about the psychoanalytic angle of the same:

Monday, March 4, 2013

Overlapping Histogram in R

Just like plot and line can be used to create overlapping plots, here is a link explaining a trick to do similar overlapping for histograms:

Friday, March 1, 2013

ASA Statistical Significance Series

The American Statistical Association’s (ASA) “Statistical Significance” series highlights the important contributions that statisticians make to society - from health care and the economy to national security and the environment:

Royal Statistical Society’s 2013 honours announced

The RSS has announced its honours (which includes Guy medals) for 2013, having been decided by Council in January. The awards will be presented to the recipients at a ceremony held during the Society’s annual conference in Newcastle on 3 September 2013:

Essay Competition for Young Statisticians

In honor of the 150th anniversary of Politecnico di Milano a competition leading to a BarCamp has been organised for young (< 33 years) statisticians to envision statistical models and methods that will have an impact on the development of technology in the next 25 years. For more details have a look at:

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Handling large number of data files

What if you have 100s of data files to be used for a single project? Isn't it annoying to read each data file individually in your workspace?

Here is use of native functions to handle the problem:

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Useful R packages for data scientists

Free e-book: Introduction to Data Science

The book by Jeffrey Stanton provides non-technical readers with a gentle introduction to essential concepts and activities of data science. For more technical readers, the book provides explanations and code for a range of interesting applications using R. Download at:

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Calculating large correlation matrices in R

Problem allocating large correlation matrices, specially for gene expression data, in R? Have a look at:

Halmos Photograph Collection

Well-known mathematical researcher, educator, and expositor Paul R. Halmos (1916-2006) enjoyed snapping photographs of mathematicians he met around the world and at his various home campuses in the U.S. In 2011, 342 of Halmos’ photos were digitized by the Archives of American Mathematics, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas, Austin, under the direction of Archivist Carol Mead with a grant from the History of Mathematics Special Interest Group of the Mathematical Association of America (HOM SIGMAA).

Mathematical Association of America presents a weekly-increasing subset of the 342 photos by inveterate photographer Halmos:

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

LaTeX on Cloud

LaTeX is now in the cloud. It looks really cool, and seems like a great way to collaborate on a paper with co-authors all over the world. Check it out:

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Stochastic Challenge

An educational resource for students or anyone wanting to learn more about stochastic processes may be found at It was developed as part of an NSF-TUES grant, and contains an online encyclopedia and calculators for common calculations. It also has videos to teach you real world problems that involve different companies. Each video will have the problem and the solution to that problem.

Damaraju Raghavarao 1938 - 2013

It is with great sadness we report that Professor Damaraju Raghavarao has passed away. He was Laura H. Carnell Professor of Statistics and the Chair of the Department of Statistics at the Temple University.

Tribute by IISA is available at:

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Jagannath Wani appointed to Order of Canada

Professor Jagannath Wani is appointed to Order of Canada (the second highest honour for merit in Canada) for his volunteer work in Calgary and India and academic achievements. He is Professor Emeritus of Statistics and Actuarial Sciences at University of Calgary.. The Maharashtra Seva Samiti Organization he founded in 1984 raised close to $7 million in 27 years to help India’s less fortunate, including matching funds from the Canadian International Development Agency and the Alberta government. 

PS: He got his master's degree from Department of Statistics, University of Pune in 1960.

2012 PROSE Award Winning Book: Classic Problems of Probability

Winner of the 2012 PROSE Award for Mathematics from The American Publishers Awards for Professional and Scholarly Excellence.

Classic Problems of Probability presents a lively account of the most intriguing aspects of statistics. From Cardano's 1564 Games of Chance to Jacob Bernoulli's 1713 Golden Theorem to Parrondo's 1996 Perplexing Paradox, the book clearly outlines the puzzles and problems of probability, interweaving the discussion with rich historical detail and the story of how the mathematicians involved arrived at their solutions. 

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Univariate Probability Distribution Explorer in Mathematica

Wolfram Mathematica introduces the Ultimate Univariate Probability Distribution Explorer! Access formulas for more than 500 distributions and 60 properties options.

Debugging in R

If you are not familiar with the basic debugging tools R provide, there are a few bits of R that can greatly help finding out what exactly has gone wrong and where, which in turn should suggest a reasonable course of action.

Centennial of Markov Chains

Today is the 100th anniversary of Andrey Markov's presentation of what are now known as "Markov chains".

Actually on January 23, 1913 of the Julian calendar, Andrey A. Markov presented for the Royal Academy of Sciences in St. Petersburg his analysis of Pushkin’s Eugene Onegin. At the time, the Russian Empire was using the Julian calendar. The 100th anniversary of the celebrated presentation is actually February 5, 2013, in the now used Gregorian calendar.

To celebrate, Wolfram guys did a case study of Alice in Wonderland. Take a look:

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

90 Days Free Access to ASA Journals

Celebrate the International Year of Statistics with Taylor & Francis and journals of the American Statistical Association! Featured articles from each new issue of the journals are set free for 90 days. Visit the ASA portal page:

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Code Pollution With Command Prompts

Whenever the command prompts are present in the source code, the reader has to copy the code, remove the prompts, and use the code. Why there has to be an additional step of removing the prompts? Why cannot we make our code directly usable to other people?

Sunday, January 27, 2013

No code - no paper!

An interesting article on how important is the reproducibility of the software/code, which one uses to support the research:

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Free - Classic Journal Content

To celebrate the International Year of Statistics Wiley online Library has created 4 special Virtual Issues containing classic articles from across the years and across the Wiley-Blackwell statistics journals portfolio. This classic content is FREE throughout 2013:

3 Month Free Trial to Statistics Journals

To celebrate the International Year of Statistics Wiley Online Library is giving the opportunity to browse all content published between January and June 2011, in over 20 Wiley Statistics Journals. You are free to take up this Trial at any point during 2013:

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Package for LaTeX tables from R output

R package to create LaTeX code for well-formatted regression tables, with multiple models side-by-side, as well as for summary statistics tables:

Friday, January 11, 2013

Women as Academic Authors, 1665-2010

Women’s presence in higher education has increased, but as authors of scholarly papers - keys to career success - their publishing patterns differ from those of men. Explore nearly 1,800 fields and subfields (including 20 from Probability & Statistics) to see which areas have the most female authors and which have the fewest, in this exclusive Chronicle report:

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Friday, January 4, 2013

2013: The International Year of Statistics

So how the whole idea came about ?

The American Statistical Association (ASA), after consulting the International Statistical Institute (ISI), learned that the Bernoulli Society was already far along in planning a celebration in 2013 of the 300th anniversary of Jakob Bernoulli’s Ars Conjectandi, the seminal work in probability. Bayes’ Theorem was also first presented publicly in 1763, making this year the 250th anniversary of that important work. With this in mind, a committee of representatives from five international statistical societies agreed to collaborate to make 2013 the International Year of Statistics.