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Physics of bubbles could explain language patterns

(University of Portsmouth) Language patterns could be predicted by simple laws of physics, a new study has found. Dr James Burridge from the University of Portsmouth has published a theory using ideas from physics to predict where and how dialects occur.

Target 'best connected neighbors' to stop spread of infection in developing countries

(University of Cambridge) An innovative new study takes a network theory approach to targeted treatment in rural Africa, and finds that a simple algorithm may be more effective than current policies, as well as easier to deploy, when it comes to preventing disease spread -- by finding those with 'most connections to sick people.'

How to dismantle scheme theory?

In several of his talks on #IUTeich, Mochizuki argues that usual scheme theory over $\mathbb{Z}$ is not suited to tackle problems such as the ABC-conjecture. The idea appears to be that ABC involves both the additive and multiplicative nature of integers, making rings into ‘2-dimensional objects’ (and clearly we use both ‘dimensions’ in the theory... Continue reading ?

US students bring home medals at international mathematics competition in Brazil

(Mathematical Association of America) The six students on the US International Mathematical Olympiad team took home gold and silver medals for their high scores at the international competition in Rio de Janeiro Brazil, held July 12-23, 2017. The US team finished in 4th place out of 110 international teams.

Recently in the sister blog

How “you” makes meaning “You” is one of the most common words in the English language. Although it typically refers to the person addressed (“How are you?”), “you” is also used to make timeless statements about people in general (“You win some, you lose some.”). Show More Summary

Applying human factors research to statistical graphics

John Rauser writes: I’ve been a reader of yours (books, papers and the blog) for a long time, and it occurred to me today that I might be able to give something back to you. I recently wrote a talk ( about human factors research applied to making statistical graphics. Show More Summary

A stunned Dyson

Terry Martin writes: I ran into this quote and thought you might enjoy it. It’s from p. 273 of Segre’s new biography of Fermi, The Pope of Physics: When Dyson met with him in 1953, Fermi welcomed him politely, but he quickly put aside...Show More Summary

Stan Weekly Roundup, 21 July 2017

It was another productive week in Stan land. The big news is that Jonathan Auerbach reports that A team of Columbia students (mostly Andrew’s, including myself) recently won first place in a competition predicting elementary school enrollment. Show More Summary

“Bayes factor”: where the term came from, and some references to why I generally hate it

Someone asked: Do you know when this term was coined or by whom? Kass and Raftery’s use of the tem as the title of their 1995 paper suggests that it was still novel then, but I have not noticed in the paper any information about where it started. Show More Summary

Google searches can be used to track dengue in underdeveloped countries

(PLOS) An analytical tool that combines Google search data with government-provided clinical data can quickly and accurately track dengue fever in less-developed countries, according to new research published in PLOS Computational Biology by Shihao Yang of Harvard University and colleagues.

How does a Nobel-prize-winning economist become a victim of bog-standard selection bias?

Someone who wishes to remain anonymous writes in with a story: Linking to a new paper by Jorge Luis García, James J. Heckman, and Anna L. Ziff, an economist Sue Dynarski makes this “joke” on facebook—or maybe it’s not a joke: How does...Show More Summary

Make Your Plans for Stans (-s + Con)

This post is by Mike A friendly reminder that registration is open for StanCon 2018, which will take place over three days, from Wednesday January 10, 2018 to Friday January 12, 2018, at the beautiful Asilomar Conference Grounds in Pacific Grove, California. Show More Summary

Researchers find path to discovering new topological materials

(Princeton University) Researchers have found a recipe for discovering new topological materials, which have exotic electronic properties that hold promise for future technologies. Until now, finding these materials has been a matter of trial and error.

New study provides BRCA mutation carriers guidance for when surgery has greatest impact

(Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences) Of the women who carry the mutated BRCA1/2 genes, 45-65 percent will develop breast cancer, and 15-39 percent will develop ovarian cancer. Many women elect to undergo preventive surgeries that can significantly increase life expectancy, but can impact later fertility. Show More Summary

Short course on Bayesian data analysis and Stan 23-25 Aug in NYC!

Jonah “ShinyStan” Gabry, Mike “Riemannian NUTS” Betancourt, and I will be giving a three-day short course next month in New York, following the model of our successful courses in 2015 and 2016. Before class everyone should install R, RStudio and RStan on their computers. Show More Summary

His concern is that the authors don’t control for the position of games within a season.

Chris Glynn wrote last year: I read your blog post about middle brow literature and PPNAS the other day. Today, a friend forwarded me this article in The Atlantic that (in my opinion) is another example of what you’ve recently been talking about. Show More Summary

Matrix Algebra

Lectures on Matrix Algebra, last update 19 July 2017, 09:56.

What is the comprehension construction?

This post explains the meaning of "the comprehension construction," the title of a recent paper by Riehl and Verity (

Analytic technique could allow neural networks to run on cellphones

(Massachusetts Institute of Technology) Method for modeling neural networks' power consumption could help make the systems portable.

Moonshine for everyone

Today, Samuel Dehority, Xavier Gonzalez, Neekon Vafa and Roger Van Peski arXived their paper Moonshine for all finite groups. Originally, Moonshine was thought to be connected to the Monster group. McKay and Thompson observed that the first coefficients of the normalized elliptic modular invariant \[ J(\tau) = q^{-1} + 196884 q + 21493760 q^2 +... Continue reading ?

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