The Vinyl Detective

If you’re a fan of British TV sci-fi, you’ve probably seen several episodes of Dr Who written by Andrew Cartmel.  Now he’s gone full geek at right angles with a new mystery series, The Vinyl Detective.  Our unlikely hero is a jazz aficionado who ekes out a living buying and selling rare vinyl recordings, and lives in that peculiar subculture of collectors and traders who haunt thrift shops, estate auctions, and jumble sales.  Having dwelt there for a few years myself, Cartmel’s characters and places ring pitch perfect, with plenty of arcane background knowledge–both real and fictional–to back up the stories.

First outing is Written in Dead Wax,  which establishes the major characters

WrittenInDeadWax

and the sequel, The Run-Out Groove proves that the first novel wasn’t a fluke.

TheRun-OutGroove

The third effort, Victory Disk, is expected in May 2018.  Don’t miss it.

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Time for some Doubleplus Ungood Badthink

The Brat Pack of science fiction has concocted a cynical ploy to disturb the genre’s Purity of Essence; they’re giving away e-books.

Wrongthink

I wasn’t too sure about this until I read John Scalzi’s pithy recommendation. “This is bullshit” exactly sums up my opinion of his latest strawman social-justice snoozer Locked In.  So he’s become my anti-oracle.

R Tutorial: the non-linear equation solver

Need a numerical solution to simultaneous non-linear equations?  The nleqslv package is just what you’re looking for!  The coding required is minimal; just define the equations you want solved in a function, set some initial values, and let ‘er rip.

Here’s an example that uses the method of moments to estimate the parameters of a beta-binomial distribution.

Multiple Comparisons, Made Easy

Adrian Colyer at the morning paper, takes a stab at explaining the problem with p-values and multiple comparisons.  He shoots!  He scores!  The crowd* goes wild!

p-value-wikipedia

Tip from an O’Reilly Daily Newsletter, which I found languishing in Clutter purgatory.

*OK, the crowd of two or three statistics lecturers who struggle to explain the multiple comparison problem.

Everybody can do something better than you can

Rachel DiCarlo Currie explains Why We Need a Revival of Humility.  Here’s the money quote

Shortly before leaving the Senate, Kyl spoke to Fred Barnes of The Weekly Standard and described a childhood trip to his local county fair in Iowa. Upon arriving at the fair, Kyl said, his father made sure that he saw the man who managed parking for the attendees. “He does that better than anyone else,” his father told him. “Everybody can do something better than you can.”

Everybody can do something better than you can. Imagine how much different our society would be if each of us embraced those words as a daily mantra.

That’s why I don’t tell the plumber, the tile guy, the yard guy, the pool guy, or my mechanic how to do his job.  If I was so friggin’ smart, why would I be paying these guys?

Tip from the Instapundit, where Sarah Hoyt has been on a roll lately.  Must be ’cause she just finished another novel.