"Whenever logical processes of thought are employed,that is, whenever thought for a time runs along an accepted groove,there is an opportunity for the machine."
"A mathematician is not a man (?) who can readily manipulate figures; often he cannot. He is not even a man who can readily perform the transformations of equations by the use of calculus. He is primarily an individual who is skilled in the use of symbolic logic on a high plane, and especially he is a man of intuitive judgment in the choice of the manipulative processes he employs.
All else he should be able to turn over to his mechanism, just as confidently as he turns over the propelling of his car to the intricate mechanism under the hood."
Computation for Statistical Inference
use parametric models with closed form solutions for
maximum likelihood estimators or Bayes estimators.
design statistically optimal procedures and worry about
computation later. Call optimization routines.
form statistical goals with computation in mind and take
advantage of special features of statistical computation.
Presentation at 2005 Statistics in Information
Ken Koehler, University Professor and chair of statistics, attributed the high ranking to several factors: a $1.8 million National Science Foundation grant helped the department improve its graduate program and attract more doctoral students (it now has 90); the department recently hosted a major conference for users of software for statistical computing; and the department has one of the best survey sampling programs in the world. ...
Let us look at what the authors of the component that integrates our statistical package into our IDE have to say about the statistical task:
"Complex contacts between interfaces can involve the coordination
of several data files, multiple sta- tistical software packages, and the
corresponding source code in each of these languages, combined for a
single analysis. ESS, as part of Emacs, has tools which assist in this,
including support for version and source code control systems, tools
for accessing programs or files on remote machines, and interfaces
to documentation systems including LaTeX and XML. In addition,
Emacs can assist with, or be programmed to perform, many tasks
related to data cleaning, management, and editing."
--Rossini et. al citation following.
The ultimate completion of this IDE is Linux, in which the whole operating system is designed with this philosophy and purpose. As someone doing scientific computing, you are not working at cross purposes with your operating system as in the case of Windows, which wants you to sit still at your desk and play solitaire. (This is a joke referring to a very popular card game that ships with Windows.)
"ESS is one of the first IDEs intended for statisticians. It provides an enhanced, powerful interface for efficient interactive data analysis and statistical programming. It is completely customizable to satisfy individual desires for interface styles as well as being extensible to additional statistical languages and analysis packages."
Rossini, Machler, Hornik, Heiberger, Sparapani (2001)
Emacs Speaks Statistics: A Universal Interface for Statistical
How does this connect to statisticians? We will consider one major statistical program that ess integrates:
R is an integrated suite of software facilities for data manipulation, calculation and graphical display. It includes
Why R for researchers and students?
Presenting results in journals (and homework) is an important part of the statistical
LaTeX is the best way to write math on a computer.
Based on TeX, created by Donald Knuth when he was dismayed at the poor quality of one of his mathematical books produced by computer.
Once the project gets big enough, or once people start to collaborate, project management becomes essential. A good version control tool can help very much in this task. Thus, we introduce Subversion, a system highly favored by many developers currently.