Monday, February 5, 2007

G&E Ch. 3

This chapter discussed summary stats - mean, sd, se, cv, median, mode, and all that jazz. Mostly stuff we've discussed in many classes before - and in Ch. 2 of JV - but they made a few interesting points. The descriptions of the different kinds of means (arithmetic vs. geometric vs. harmonic) and when they're used was interesting - we used geo. means in a pop. ecology/analysis class I took a couple years ago, but I never really understood why. I also liked the description of degrees of freedom - finally, it makes sense. That's what I like about this book so far (as I've said before) - they give good, easy-to-understand descriptions of basic things that, generally, are assumed to be understood (yet rarely/never explained) in other stats books.

Then later in the chapter they bring up Bayesian stats again a couple times, but never follow up... Why don't we have a Bayesian stats class here? I'm not even aware of any current faculty who have much experience with Bayesian stats, with the exception of their use in systematics (correct me if I'm wrong)...I'll have to read up, because it seems that they're becoming more common...

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