Author Archive for lisan

Great Tweetstorm: Most important year in Economics?

This is from the blogger @undercoverhistorian. We had a previous post on the site she maintains. Below is an interesting set of almost 50 tweets – some illustrated – where she defends 1952 as the most important year.

twitter feed
Click here for tweetstorm

Risk Visualization Theater

How to better communicate election forecasts — in one simple chart
Justin Gross | Monkey Cage blog [Washington Post]
November 29, 2016

Most folks were surprised by the results of the 2016 Presidential election and this was in part due to some of the rosy forecasts by some of the poll aggregators, like Huffington Post. But, even when a site had a forecast with a 30% chance of Trump winning, most people have trouble understanding that a Trump victory was possible. The explanation:

But certain representations of probability are more readily grasped than others. In particular, we have trouble understanding risk in terms of the “percent chance” but we do better when simple raw numbers of different outcomes are depicted visually.

Solution: Show the risk as a “Risk Visualization Theater.” Below are the representations of forecasts of victory for Trump via FiveThirtyEight, NYT Upshot, and Huffington Post Pollster. The filled theater seats (in black) represent the chance of a Trump victory. Clearly, the chance of that event happening don’t look so remote in the far left depiction, but look very unlikely as one moves to the right.

Risk via a theater

Missing girls in China maybe weren’t missing after all

China has had a highly unbalanced sex ratio at birth for years leading to an estimate of 30 to 60 million missing girls. The traditional explanation was male preference, exacerbated by the one-child policy, which led to sex selective abortion and/or infanticide. New research presents evidence that maybe the missing girls were never missing after all.

Researchers may have ‘found’ many of China’s 30 million missing girls
Simon Denyer | Washington Post
November 30, 2016

Delayed Registration and Identifying the “Missing Girls” in China
Yaojiang Shi and John James Kennedy | China Daily
November 15, 2016

Detroitography Mapping Seminar

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A 2-hour workshop on mapping data from Detroit is offered on Thursday, November 3rd on campus. Perhaps as useful is meeting the presenter who is the founder of Detroitography.com a group that is all about maps and geography of Detroit. And, that also means geographically-referenced data.

Useful Links
Workshop: Link to workshop
Website: Detroitography.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/detroitography
Detroit Opendata: http://detroitdata.org/

Creating a travel time polygon

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Using the TravelTime Search API to Generate an Isochrone
GIS Lounge | GIS contributor
July 9, 2016
Using the TravelTime platform and some simple code, researchers can map how far people can travel in 30 minutes by public transportation from a specific address. This is more realistic than radius circles because these don’t take into account roads, bus routes, etc.

The TravelTime platform includes several countries, including US coasts.

Accidental Data Librarian Webinar Series

Help! I’m an Accidental Government Information Librarian Webinars

These monthly webinars out of the North Carolina Library Association provide a good introduction introduction to all sorts of data products by subject experts: APIs, mapping, UN data, global trade, court records, etc. Folks can sign up and watch the presentation in real time or as a recording. Slides are available for all presentations.

Jeremy Darrington’s webinar on election data is up on YouTube. You can also see his slides and links on Slideshare.

Altmetrics: What are they and/or should I care?

Altmetrics are metrics and qualitative data that are complementary to citation-based metrics. Some argue that these metrics should be considered in tenure decisions, along with the more traditional metrics of publishing in a high impact journal with many citations. Almetrics cover a wider range of materials than just those in professional journals – websites, blogs, materials in repositories like figshare or GitHub. It also covers more than citations, such as views and downloads.

How to Use Altmetrics to Showcase Engagement Efforts for Promotion and Tenure
Stacy Konkiel | Altmetric Blog
October 18, 2016

This blogpost from the Altmetric site, shows how Altmetrics can be incorporated into a traditional tenure document.

And an even more informative article on Altmetrics is a summary written by Yan Fu in a PSC news report:
Altmetrics: New Ways to Measure the Impact of Research Products
Yan Fu | PSC Center News
April 2014

The Undercover Historian

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[Link to Undercover Historian blog]

The Undercover Historian
Beatrice Cherrier | blog
since 2011

This is a blog by Beatrice Cherrier, an historian of economics. It has been in existence since 2011 and has a wealth of information about the history of the field of economics. And, no I don’t know what her quote about “pig-headed” is referencing.

Weighting Makes a Difference

How One 19-Year-Old Illinois Man Is Distorting National Polling Averages
New York Times | Nate Cohn @Nate_Cohn
October 12, 2016

Trump support

[Link to NYT article]

This is a nice illustration of the decisions polls make when they weight their respondents. The authors disagree with the decisions of the USC/LA-Times pollsters, but applaud them for transparency:

It’s worth noting that this analysis is possible only because the poll is extremely and admirably transparent: It has published a data set and the documentation necessary to replicate the survey.

The article has multiple illustrations of what the trend of national Trump support would have been with different weighting decisions. Check it out.

Big Data is not about the Data

Gary King, Director for the Institute for Quantitative Social Science at Harvard University spoke at a recent Michigan Institute for Data Science (MIDAS) symposium. Below are links to the slides and a video of the presentation.
Slides | Video

For those who don’t want to watch the entire presentation, here are links to specific papers and/or software he mentions in the presentation.

Automated Text Analysis
VA: Verbal Autopsy [software]
Evaluating U.S. Social Security Administration Forecasts
Learning Catalytics [commercial start-up]
Crimson Hexagon: Social Media Insights [commercial start-up]
Perusall [commercial start-up, e-book platform to increase student engagement]

And, it might be more productive to just go through King’s personal website to find the content yourself. The above is just a fraction of his productivity.