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2 problems of combinations and permutations.

How many unique ways are there to put X rocks into Y boxes? (Given two different sets of attributes for both the rocks and the boxes.) [more inside]
posted by CustooFintel on Jun 4, 2014 - 18 answers

SPSS for a Mac

Does anyone know if there is a trial version of SPSS to download for a Mac? I tried downloading a free trial, but I didn't trust the website that I was on. Are there add-ons for excel that would allow me to do this? Any suggestions are welcome.
posted by nidora on Jun 4, 2014 - 4 answers

Help me up my pNERD (where p = player).

I play fantasy baseball in a league with friends, some of whom pay no attention and others who have baseball stats in their very DNA. I myself am moderately ok most of the time, but generally have a low-level understanding of what I'm doing, so when things go wrong my solution is usually to flail around with free agent players while watching my ship sink, week by week. I'd like to get off this plateau and actually learn more about the game, sabermetrics, etc so I can be a legit contender, but I'm lost in the morass: every resource I can find is super basic or way over my head. Help! [more inside]
posted by AthenaPolias on May 29, 2014 - 4 answers

Is Statistics MS a good background for research in government agencies?

Would Statistics masters make me competitive for research analyst jobs in state/county government agencies? [more inside]
posted by ichomp on May 23, 2014 - 7 answers

How many pharmaceuticals available for Rx or OTC in the US?

This study and this article mention that there are more than 3,000 pharmaceuticals currently approved for prescription in the U.S and many compounds approved for OTC use. Where did they come up with that number or how might one come up that type of estimate? [more inside]
posted by GPF on May 13, 2014 - 1 answer

Parsing statistical data

I have a spreadsheet with 120,000 or so rows & need to pull out some data. [more inside]
posted by woodman on May 12, 2014 - 12 answers

Online statistics and literature course at a community college?

Looking for a community college that has an online statistics and/or women's lit course. [more inside]
posted by zardoz on May 7, 2014 - 3 answers

Social Science anthologies that use statistics?

I'm looking for a social science type book, probably an edited volume, that tackles an issue using lots of data & statistical tests / arguments to debate an issue. I am less concerned with the issue being debated, and more concerned with learning 1) what constitutes proper manipulation of data 2) what tests are appropriate and when 3) what proper inference is. I'm not afraid of math.
posted by MisantropicPainforest on May 7, 2014 - 12 answers

Source of well-known joke about statisticians?

There's a well-known joke about statisticians. "Did you hear the one one about the statistician who drowned trying to wade across the river? He knew it was three feet deep...on average." I've searched for a source for this joke on the internet, but haven't found one. Does anyone have any idea where this joke originated? Call me an academic, but I feel the need to attribute it if I can.
posted by Philosopher Dirtbike on May 4, 2014 - 2 answers

Looking for the best basketball statistics resources

I'm a scientist who deals with statistics all day, and my partner is a die-hard basketball fan. He follows some of the basketball stats nerds, and sometimes he wants to talk about basketball stats with me, but I can never find any decent statistical summaries - just a bunch of averages with no context provided. Are there any free resources that provide sports statistics with more than simple averages? [more inside]
posted by dialetheia on Apr 29, 2014 - 11 answers

Good introduction to statistics class in the DC area or online?

I'm looking to take an intro to statistics class this fall or summer. I'd be up for taking it online or in person, if in person it would have to be in or near Washington DC. It could either be an undergraduate or graduate class, but not one where you have to know calculus. Has anyone taken a good introduction to statistics class in the DC area or online that they could recommend?
posted by catquas on Apr 18, 2014 - 5 answers

How can I learn SPSS?

I want to learn SPSS. What are my options? [more inside]
posted by synecdoche on Mar 22, 2014 - 9 answers

Chance of event with small sample size, based on larger related sample?

Can/how can one improve the estimate for a chance of an event with a small historical sample size by utilizing the chance of a related event with a large historical sample size? Example and half-assed guess inside. [more inside]
posted by Flunkie on Mar 20, 2014 - 16 answers

Ideas for tag cloud analysis

I have 600 images tagged with keywords. In addition to nice pictures of tag clouds and frequency calculations, what sort of smart, insightful analysis can I do with these data that could reveal relationships between the tags and other (more formal) data attached to the images? Any advice on software tools (Windows, preferably FOSS) would be appreciated. I have some training in statistics and I have actually done textual statistics before but only briefly so I'm not familiar with the current tools and methods.
posted by elgilito on Mar 11, 2014 - 2 answers

The Mid-PhD Crisis

Hi Hivemind, I'm currently enrolled in a PhD program for statistics and operations research, and in two more years I can grab that PhD. Alternatively, I can jump ship now with a MS, headed for the (inviting/inevitable) waters of industry. Knowing that I have no interest in staying in academia, give me some motivation to finish. Or, tell me to quit because actual work experience is more valuable! What roles should I be looking at other than Data Scientist? Would it be feasible to get a position doing private research, and would that be awesome? Bonus points if you can tell me what skills I should be cultivating to be hire-able (software engineering)? P.S. I will also do some more chatting with profs and former students to figure out how I should be directing myself, but I hope the HiveMind can provide some complementary ideas.
posted by zscore on Feb 16, 2014 - 11 answers

Not my stats homework, I swear

An NPR blog cites an NSF study which claims that 26 percent of Americans asked answered that the Sun goes around the Earth, rather than vice versa. Believing that 1 in 4 of my fellow citizens doesn't know that the Earth circles the Sun is hard enough. But thinking about that number, it seems worse than that: if 26% got a 50/50 question wrong, wouldn't another 26% have answered correctly just based on chance rather than knowledge? That would mean that roughly half of Americans didn't know (and then split evenly on their guess). The idea that half of Americans don't know seems intuitively ludicrous to me. Am I missing something in how I think about this? Please help my statistically challenged brain... [more inside]
posted by tyllwin on Feb 15, 2014 - 17 answers

King Henry VIII's dream come true...

Biologists and Staticians... what's going on here? There hasn't been a female born in my husband's family in two generations. Help solve the brothers' debate about what's causing this, and what the odds of our pregnancy being male or female is. [more inside]
posted by jrobin276 on Feb 11, 2014 - 16 answers

What percent of adults have sexually abused a minor?

There's a lot of statistics online about how many children are sexually abused, but not much about how many adults are doing the abusing. I did read one article that mentioned in passing that about 1 in 20 men and 1 in 3300 women have sexually abused a child, but I think that was referring to only prepubescent children, not minors in general. The article was pretty old too, and there was no source for where they got that information. If anyone knows where I can find a reliable statistic regarding the percent of adults that sexually abuse children then I would appreciate it. [more inside]
posted by sam_harms on Feb 4, 2014 - 11 answers

Using Excel's regression tools to determine the 95% confidence interval

MS Excel's regression tools provide 95% lower/upper confidence results but how does one properly interpret and then express those as a single ± (plus/minus) figure? [more inside]
posted by kartguy on Jan 26, 2014 - 4 answers

Paging Mr. Edward Tufte!

What is the lie factor of this graph?
posted by Tom-B on Jan 12, 2014 - 4 answers

Books to make Statistics Interesting

If I'm going to succeed in a field I am considering (bioinformatics), I'm going to need to learn a good deal of statistics. I have limited experience in the subject and have never found the details of it especially compelling. Can you recommend some books on statiistics (not necessarily light on the details) that are well written and interesting? Something designed to get the layman interested in the details could be good, but textbook recommendations would also be good.
posted by garuda on Dec 20, 2013 - 20 answers

A pirate's favorite programming language... and mine too?

I'm a daily MATLAB user for data analysis, and fairly fluent with most toolboxes, including Parallel Computing. I know I need to learn something new, though.* (MATLAB is great for prototyping but unwieldy for real data-crunching.) I'm taking a class (Bayesian stat methods) starting in January based around R. What's the best resource to get started with R for someone like me? [more inside]
posted by supercres on Dec 12, 2013 - 14 answers

Where can I bulk-download NBA box scores and stats?

I'm looking for every box score my favorite NBA team played in for this year and last. Where can I go to download this data? [more inside]
posted by antonymous on Dec 5, 2013 - 3 answers

Statistical analysis help for a survey

I have 50+ responses from large companies for a survey that I've written which has approximately 100 questions. There is no other data that can be linked to this survey. I need to know what I can do with these results and how to do it. [more inside]
posted by JiffyQ on Dec 1, 2013 - 6 answers

Becoming Fluent in Predictive Analytics

I work in a University managing the broad based direct mail, email and calling programs. I have zero undergrad or graduate experience with math, business or the social sciences. (Aka, I can write a really nice essay...) I would like to chart a path to being recognized as an expert in predictive analytics. [more inside]
posted by meta x zen on Nov 26, 2013 - 3 answers

Statistics for approval correlating demographic variable?

How do I use SPSS to analyze a range of approval ratings which vary by participant and correlate the skew to one demographic variable? [more inside]
posted by lettuchi on Nov 25, 2013 - 3 answers

Career advice for math major (also competent programmer)?

I like math. Programming is OK, but I don't want to make it my thing. What careers should I be looking at? (Special snowflake details inside.) [more inside]
posted by sqrtofpi on Nov 25, 2013 - 15 answers

I've reached a crossroads

Have completed 2/3 of an undergrad course and want to transfer out. [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Nov 13, 2013 - 13 answers

What percentage of English words have three syllables?

What percentage of English words have three syllables?
posted by reverend cuttle on Nov 12, 2013 - 10 answers

Economics 101: How to read national accounts

I'm trying to reconcile two numbers from the same national statistical agency. I'm looking for a dummy's guide for what defines the difference between the two numbers and how to use one to estimate the other. [more inside]
posted by MuffinMan on Oct 22, 2013 - 6 answers

What are some scary numbers?

I'm thinking about setting up a tongue in cheek project for Halloween that involves showing numbers that are scary. What numbers (with the context of a description) make you anxious, or at least spook you a bit on first glance? [more inside]
posted by mccarty.tim on Oct 5, 2013 - 47 answers

Applied Stats vs. Biostats

How flexible is a master's degree in biostatistics compared to one in applied statistics? Is this even what I want to do? [more inside]
posted by Comet Bug on Oct 4, 2013 - 4 answers

Population of ranked lists

I have a statistics question about ranked lists. This is not a homework question. [more inside]
posted by Blazecock Pileon on Sep 29, 2013 - 13 answers

Stats and game nerds, lend me your beanplates.

I have a list of 15 people. Each person has between 1 and 3 entries in a lottery, for a total of 35 entries. I need to select 9 people from the list of 15--nobody can win more than once. What is the most transparent, most random, most low-tech way I can do this? [more inside]
posted by tchemgrrl on Sep 18, 2013 - 15 answers

How can I track visitors to multiple url-shortened URLs?

I post a lot of URLs to social media sites (and since one of those is Twitter I often use url shorteners) that point to my own publishing company's website, and also directly to where I sell my books on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, etc. I know services like ow.ly will track how many clickthroughs a url will get, and I think they can give me multiple shortened urls for the same target url. I'm wondering if any url shortening sites will also let me keep track of all of my shortened urls and give them nicknames or make notes (so I can note where I've used them) and give me a chart or spreadsheet or something that shows me which urls are getting the most traffic. Or if there's an app or separate website where I can enter the info that will then collect the tracking data. I'm trying to avoid having to manually check every url's visitors data.
posted by joannemerriam on Sep 15, 2013 - 3 answers

Career Development Suggestions for making sense of and displaying data

I currently work for a growing company doing various social media marketing for small businesses. I have been finding that I receive a lot of satisfaction doing activities related to what I learned in library school. I enjoy collecting, organizing, and providing data and information for our internal staff and making things approachable. One weakness I see is that we are especially data rich and insight poor with social media. I would like to know if there are any recommended programs for data mining or statistical analysis? [more inside]
posted by andendau on Sep 8, 2013 - 6 answers

Who's the most bored MLB player?

What is the longest streak of at-bats a fielder has played through without being part of a play?
posted by Hollywood Upstairs Medical College on Aug 31, 2013 - 8 answers

Where can I find a word-count tool to track my writing goals?

I'm looking for a word-count tool that will allow me to: set a goal for words written by a specific date, enter in the words I have written each day, see how many words I remaining toward my goal, and how many words I will need to average each day to reach my goal. [more inside]
posted by Tevin on Aug 26, 2013 - 7 answers

To R or not to R

My office has recently had some funds open up and we are looking into investing in some statistical software to make our lives easier. We do a lot of work with distribution fitting, Monte Carlo analysis, and regression analysis with data sets that may contain left or right censored data. Unfortunately, we only have a few days to identify the best software package for our buck. Alternatively, the idea has been floated to download the free R software and spend the money on some training to get over the steep learning curve. What program or approach would be the best use of our money?
posted by C'est la D.C. on Aug 12, 2013 - 23 answers

I'm having trouble understanding likelihood ratios and diagnostic tests.

I'm struggling to understand likelihood ratios (LR) in the context of diagnostic tests, and why a positive LR is influenced by the sensitivity of the test. [more inside]
posted by cacofonie on Aug 1, 2013 - 6 answers

Citation, please.

Is there actual scientific research behind this oft-cited UI response time => human perception table? Or is it just "conventional wisdom." If not, I'd love to see the original research and know how it was conducted.
posted by ignignokt on Jul 22, 2013 - 3 answers

Statistical analysis of votes for a certain outcome

We have a group of six people with 55 different options. Each member of the party has to vote for each option under 8 different analyses i.e. appearance, distinctness, etc. The options are quality weighted. [more inside]
posted by trashcan on Jul 10, 2013 - 4 answers

OkCupid Blog RIP...

So I take it that the OkTrends blog was killed off after Match bought OkCupid. Where can I now get my regular fix of really interesting statistics presented at a level that the lay person can understand? (I already know about Nate Silver and xkcd's What If.)
posted by capricorn on Jul 7, 2013 - 7 answers

Statistics question when value of test statistic t...

I'm working on a problem for "Inferences about the difference between two population means for independent samples: sigma 1 & 2 unknown and unequal." The final value of "test statistic t" falls in the rejection region for 95% confidence interval, but falls in the nonrejection region for 99% confidence interval. Should I perform additional calculations before rejecting my null hypothesis?
posted by iamcharity on Jul 1, 2013 - 11 answers

Analysing email for statistics

I have over 10 years of sent email sitting in a folder. Are there any tools (preferably for OS X or *nix, but anything interesting is welcome) that I can use to generate interesting statistics, or draw pretty graphs, word clouds... basically anything interesting that works on a huge number of emails.
posted by Mwongozi on Jun 28, 2013 - 6 answers

Find standard deviation in Excel, but first develop a labor-saving trick

Help me with statistics and Excel. Especially help me if you know any labor saving methods. I want the median, mean and standard deviation for the average price of all items sold, but my spreadsheet-full-of-data doesn't tell me the price of each sale -- just the average price per store, and the number sold at that store. Something like this: [more inside]
posted by croutonsupafreak on Jun 21, 2013 - 10 answers

Returning to grad school after 2 year hiatus

So I'm beginning a statistics PhD program this fall and I'm concerned that my math skills have gotten rusty since I haven't done anything related for the past two years. I've been working as an actuary since I graduated college but I don't do that much math--mostly a lot of programming. Has anybody been in a similar situation to me? How was the adjustment for you? I'm considering retaking advanced calculus and linear algebra during my first year (probably next summer before I take 2nd year advanced courses) just to refresh myself again. I'm aware some people may think this is kind of pathetic but I'd rather be safe than sorry. Besides, it's only my first year. Is this frowned upon? [more inside]
posted by molamola on Jun 17, 2013 - 15 answers

Learning Statistics for the Social Sciences 101 paperlessly

I'm running into trouble with my statistics course. I'm just getting up to t statistics for independent measures research design. My problems are: 1. I'm going through a lot of paper 2. I need to keep all my calculations better organized as a do them 3. I'm flipping back and forth between my book, an online version of the book, and another screen so that I can reference as much material as possible at once. I'm thinking some kind of basic statistics calculator spreadsheet (or any other format) would be in order. Can anybody direct me towards one? [more inside]
posted by Che boludo! on Jun 8, 2013 - 9 answers

The limits to bedbugs

What are the limits to bedbugs? Why isn't every hotel room infested given how tough they are claimed to be? Is there any evidence on the chances of taking bed bugs home from a hotel with you? Will the bedbug infestation rates go ever upwards? Why or why not? Interested in aggregated, rather than anecdotal evidence here. [more inside]
posted by mister_kaupungister on May 31, 2013 - 5 answers

How do I learn to read peer-reviewed studies comfortably?

I come from an engineering background rather than a research background, and I find myself lacking in vocabulary when it comes to understanding research papers, particularly when they start talking about ANOVA analyses, F(x) effect sizes and p values. I can skim through the results of a study and see that certain numbers are bigger than other numbers, but I don't really know how to tell whether what I'm seeing is significant. I'm guessing that I'm missing basic education in statistics. Can I fix this in a simple way?
posted by sdis on May 28, 2013 - 9 answers

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