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Blog Profile / The Endeavour

Filed Under:Academics
Posts on Regator:1031
Posts / Week:5.3
Archived Since:April 26, 2011

Blog Post Archive


Zig Ziglar said that if you increase your confidence, you increase your competence. I think that’s generally true. Of course you could be an idiot and become a more confident idiot. But when we have more confidence, we explore more options, and in effect become more competent. There are some things you may need to […]

Probability approximations

This week’s resource post lists notes on probability approximations. Do we even need probability approximations anymore? They’re not as necessary for numerical computation as they once were, but they remain vital for understanding the behavior of probability distributions and for theoretical calculations. Show More Summary

More data, less accuracy

Statistical methods should do better with more data. That’s essentially what the technical term “consistency” means. But with improper numerical techniques, the the numerical error can increase with more data, overshadowing the decreasing statistical error. Show More Summary

Managing Emacs windows

When you have Emacs split into multiple windows, how do you move your cursor between windows? How do you move the windows around? Moving the cursor between windows You can use C-x o to move the cursor to the “other” window. That works great when you only have two windows: C-x o toggles between them. […]

Advice for going solo

Two years ago I left my job at MD Anderson to become an independent consultant. When people ask me what I learned or what advice I’d give, here are some of the things I usually say. You can’t transition gradually I’ve done consulting on the side throughout my career, and I planned to ramp up […]

Numerical computing resources

This week’s resource post: some numerical computing pages on this site. Stand-alone code for numerical computing Accurately computing running variance IEEE floating-point exceptions in C++ Double exponential integration Math.h in POSIX,...Show More Summary

Striving for simplicity, arriving at complexity

This post is a riff on a line from Mathematics without Apologies, the book I quoted yesterday. In an all too familiar trade-off, the result of striving for ultimate simplicity is intolerable complexity; to eliminate too-long proofs we find ourselves “hopelessly lost” among the too-long definitions. [emphasis added] It’s as if there’s some sort of […]

Regular expression resources

Continuing the series of resource posts each Wednesday, this week we have notes on regular expressions: Regular expressions in PowerShell and Perl Regular expressions in R Regular expressions in Mathematica C++ TR1 regular expressions See also blog posts tagged regular expressions and the RegexTip Twitter account. Show More Summary

Problem solvers and theory builders

From Mathematics without Apologies: It’s conventional to classify mathematicians as “problem solvers” or “theory builders,” depending on temperament. My experiences and the sources I consulted in writing this book convince me that curiosity about problems guides the growth of theories, rather than the other way around. Show More Summary

New development in cancer research scandal

My interest in the Anil Potti scandal started when my former colleagues could not reproduce the analysis in one of Potti’s papers. (Actually, they did reproduce the analysis, at great effort, in the sense of forensically determining the erroneous steps that were carried out.) Two years ago, the story was on 60 Minutes. The straw […]

Blog seventh anniversary

Seven years This blog is seven years old today. I’ve written 2,273 posts so far, a little less than one per day. Over the holidays I combed through older posts looking for typos, broken links, etc. I fixed a lot of little things, but I’m sure I missed a few. If you find any problems, […]

Probability resources

Each Wednesday I post a list of notes on some topic. This week it’s probability. Diagram of probability distribution relationships Central Limit Theorems Counting selections with replacement Distributions in Mathematica Distributions...Show More Summary

Photo review

Here are some of the photos I took on my travels last year. Bicycles on the Google campus in Mountainview, California: Sunrise at Isle Vista, California: View from University of California Santa Barbara: Reflection of the Space Needle in the EMP museum in Seattle, Washington: Paradise Falls, Thousand Oaks, California: Bed and breakfast in Geldermalsen, […]

Bringing back Coltrane

In the novel Chasing Shadows the bad guys have built a time machine named Magog. “The bottom line is this. And it is hard for me to believe. They are going to use Magog to bring someone back from the past.” Jack did not blink or move. His heart was beating very quickly now, but […]

Drug discovery rates

From Zero to One: Eroom’s law — that’s Moore’s law backward — observes that the number of new drugs approved per billion dollars spent on R&D has halved every nine years since 1950.

Python resources

Each Wednesday I post a list of some of the resources on this site. This week: Python notes. Python counterparts for C math functions Bessel functions in SciPy Gamma and related functions in SciPy Distributions in SciPy See also blog posts tagged Python, SciPy, and SymPy and the Twitter account SciPyTip. Last week: Special functions […]

Most popular posts of 2014

Here are the top five posts from this blog for 2014: How medieval astronomers made trig tables Monads are hard because … Time exchange rate Hello-world is the hard part What would Donald Knuth do?

Special function resources

This week’s resource post: some pages of notes on special functions: Diagram of relations between special functions Identities for gamma and related functions Relations between Bessel functions Bessel functions in SciPy Gamma and related functions in SciPy See also blog posts tagged special functions. Show More Summary

Counting primitive bit strings

A string of bits is called primitive if it is not the repetition of several copies of a smaller string of bits. For example, the 101101 is not primitive because it can be broken down into two copies of the string 101. In Python notation, you could produce 101101 by "101"2. The string 11001101, on […]

Thou, thee, ye, you

Ever wonder what the rules were for when to use thou, thee, ye, or you in Shakespeare or the King James Bible? For example, the inscription on front of the Main Building at The University of Texas says Ye shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free. Why ye at the beginning […]

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