# Thread: Statistics Poetry

1. ## Re: Statistics Poetry

It ain't necessarily so
Statistical Modelling Lyrics: Michael Greenacre

It ain't necessarily so,
It ain't necessarily so
That for models to be formal
Errors have to be normal
But it ain't necessarily so.

My data had values real skew,
Relationships nonlinear too,
But with spline approximation
Or Box-Cox transformation
My data are more normal than you!

Now it ain't necessarily so
That your deviance has to be low,
Use less parameters,
Less alphas and betas,
Then apply Akaike,
Although it sounds freaky,
And less will be more as you know...

It ain't necessarily so
It ain't necessarily so
That for models to be formal
Data have to be normal
But it ain't necessarily so.
It aint necessarily It aint necessarily
It aint necessarily It aint necessarily SO!

Inaugurating the 22nd International Workshop on Statistical Modelling, Barcelona, 2 July 2007
Performed by Gurdeep Stephens & Michael Greenacre
Music: George Gershwin
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qfw6oqoOg6A

2. ## The Following User Says Thank You to Karabiner For This Useful Post:

PeterFlom (04-16-2015)

3. ## Re: Statistics Poetry

Real Math
by Scott Schulz

The meter is running:
A measured stare,
A moment of reckoning.
I assay a smile.

The angle of her lips
Is well defined.
She responds to polite necessity;
Inside, she calculates.

A functional relationship:
Completeness and consistency,
One-to-one and onto,
We approach asymptotically.

A strange attractor:
Cycle and permutation,
We rationalize
And find a common denominator.

The radius of convergence
Tends to zero in the limit.
We postulate love;
The proof eludes us:

Unbounded, infeasible,
Too many degrees of freedom.
We exchange numbers,
But diverge unsatisfied.

Rejected hypothesis:
She weighs the merits
Of a false negative
Versus a false positive.

Singular and empty,
Rational, perhaps, but dense,
I take another random walk,
Regenerate and renew.

http://pages.sbcglobal.net/sschulz/wwww10.htm

4. ## The Following User Says Thank You to Karabiner For This Useful Post:

TheEcologist (04-16-2015)

5. ## Re: Statistics Poetry

Thanks for posting my poem! It's the same Peter Flom, but that is about 5 e-mails ago.

6. ## Re: Statistics Poetry

Two limericks
by Peter Flom

One for frequentists

A frequentist fellow named Smith
Kept silent (he pleaded the fifth)
When the judge inquired
Re assumptions required
To calculate p-values with

And one for Bayesians:

A young statistician named Myers
Says tenure is all he desires
But his dreams won’t be met,
He’ll be fired, I bet,
When they catch him adjusting his priors.

7. ## Re: Statistics Poetry

A statistics haiku by Peter Flom

Hypothesis test?
Oh! p-value does not mean
What you think it does.

8. ## Re: Statistics Poetry

Avoiding diSASters
by Peter Flom

SAS can be a powerful tool,
But misapply it, and look a fool.
To avoid common errors it's always best
To follow the advice that you'll read next.

SAS has DATA steps and PROCS,
And you can alternate them.
But woe betide the programmer
Who tries to integrate them.

INFORMATS can help you read<br>
Almost any data.
But put them right after the VAR NAME<br>
And do not wait for later.

The semicolon is your friend.
It's how all SAS statements end.
So if you've got some oddball errors
A dot and comma may end your terrors.

A program without comments will run just fine
(SAS really doesn't care)
But six months later will YOU know
Why you put that statement there?

Each variable has got a length
Assigned when it's first mentioned
If you state length explicitly
Your program may be strengthened.

Missing values plague all data
That I have ever seen
But using 999 for them
May distort the value's mean.

Now every MERGE should have its BY
There's a simple reason why
If not, then data sets might get replaced
And you would lose a lot of face.

And finally, please use each PROC
For just what it's intended.
That's all the advice that I have got
So here my poem's ended.

9. ## The Following User Says Thank You to PeterFlom For This Useful Post:

Jake (04-16-2015)

10. ## Re: Statistics Poetry

Meditation on Statistical Method
by J. V. Cunningham

Plato, despair!
We prove by norms
How numbers bear
Empiric forms,

How random wrong
Will average right
If time be long
And error slight,

But in our hearts
Hyperbole
Curves and departs
To infinity.

Error is boundless.
Nor hope nor doubt,
Though both be groundless,
Will average out.

From The Exclusions of a Rhyme: Poems and Epigrams (1960).

11. ## Re: Statistics Poetry

Bayesian versus Frequentist song
by Corrigan Brothers

Toor a loo
toor a loo
toor a loo
toor a listics
this long running spat
in the world of statistics

Now for a long time in the world of stats
Bayesians and Frequentists have a had a spat
Frequentists say probability’s objective
But Bayesians will tell you that its subjective

Toor a loo...

Now the Bayesians are not amateurs
but for them its only random paramaters
while frequentists claim that it has been shown
that paramaters are fixed and unknown

Toor a loo...

Interpretations based on limited frequency
thats was frequentists will have you believe
the old Bayesians think the solution
that over parameters there's probability distribution
Toor a loo...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_k2j96hpEkM
Written and sung by the Irish band Corrigan Brothers, singers of
There's No One As Irish As Barack Obama.

12. ## The Following User Says Thank You to Karabiner For This Useful Post:

PeterFlom (10-09-2015)

13. ## Re: Statistics Poetry

Nocione de Estadisica
Statistical Concepts
By Leopoldo de Luis

Note: This is a German's rough translation from Spanish into English.
If you would like to suggest corrections or improvements, then please send me a message.

La estadística es una princesa de azul hielo
que patina por círculos de cálculos metálicos
y arrastra suavemente a sus fríos dominios.

Statistics is a princess of blue ice
that slides by circles of metal calculations
and drags gently to her cold domains.

Entras en sus elipses, en sus cerradas curvas,
en sus circunferencias concéntricas te sumes,
sus ecuaciones ponen espejos a tu imagen,
tus huesos redondeas en sus lentas parábolas,
tus madejas devánanse en su asíntota,
habita en sus incógnitas tu sangre,
eres el leve punto de sus gráficos,
cruzas el seco cielo que se acota
entre su abscisa y su ordenada, eres
el pájaro pequeño que persigue la flecha
de la media aritmética más allá de su nido.

You walk into its ellipses, its closed curves,
in its concentric circumferences you join,
its equations are mirrors to your image,
your bones you round off in its slow parables,
your skeins wind up in its asymptotes,
in its variables dwells your blood,
you're the minor point of its graphics,
you cross the dry sky that is bounded
between its abscissa and its ordinate, you are
the small bird that pursues the arrow
of the arithmetic mean beyond its nest.

Somos el acechado gorrión de la estadística,
caemos en sus redes y el corazón nos tiembla
como trémulas alas, nos sentimos heridos
pero sólo nos cruza un pequeño taladro
para que nos registre la gran computadora.

We are the sparrow waylaid by statistics,
we fall into its nets and our hearts tremble,
shaking wings, we feel wounded,
but we only cross a small hole
so that the great computer registers us.

Hoy me he muerto de hambre, ayer besé tus labios,
mañana seré el preso de un sueño subversivo,
camino con el flanco quemado por un hierro,
soy la res de una inmensa ganadería técnica
y tengo una sonrisa de pena programada.

Today I died of hunger, yesterday I kissed your lips,
tomorrow I will be the prisoner of a subversive dream,
walk with the flank burned by an iron,
I am cattle from a huge technical stock breeding
and I hold a smile of programmed grief.

Yo soy el cero punto y un pequeño guarismo
por ciento de la masa que consume la vida,
apenas si perturbo el nivel de incidencia
y mi amor se regula por un coeficiente.
El cáncer me ha elegido, el infarto me ronda,
la autopista reclama mi cadáver.

I am the zero point and a small
percentage of the mass that consumes life,
hardly disturb the level of incidence,
and my love is regulated by a coefficient.
The cancer has chosen me, the infarction haunts me,
the highway claims my corpse.

Soñé con una pura libertad: bien mirado
pudiera ser su hipótesis, y sé que ya mi muerte
está en una esperanza matemática.

I dreamed with pure freedom: highly regarded
could be its hypothesis, and I know that my death
is an expected value.

http://www.madrimasd.org/cienciaysoc...sia.asp?id=169

14. ## Re: Statistics Poetry

The p Value Song
By Michael Greenacre

Statistics, logistics, cladistics seem to me
To have a common theme scientifically
Economists, biologists with PhD degrees
They all need some proof of their theories
A letter is the key, you’ll see clearly
Not b nor g nor v
But it’s the p!

There’s no values like p values
Like no values I know
Think of something that is not worth proving
An hypothesis that everyone calls Null
If your p is too large to reject it
Then your experiment is rather dull

There’s no values like p values
Especially when they’re low
Don’t be sad if you p’s over .05
Just try again with samples twice the size
Everything is possible, just trust in me
Put your faith in the p

The F test, the z test, the Chi square and the t
And other cryptic terminology
ANOVA, regression, tests distribution-free
They all need some sort of guarantee
So if you find a tiny effect size
The p-value will be a good disguise
There’s no values like p values
The frequentist’s hero
When you get that data modellng feeling
But results you have are not a lot
You will need some stats that are appealing
To show the journal your work is hot

There’s no values like p values
Especially when they are low
Don’t be sad when you p’s over .05
Just try again with samples twice the size
Everything is possible, just trust in me
Put your faith in the p

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yy4nsEvKh2E

15. ## Re: Statistics Poetry

Ode to Biostats
By Elizabeth Arend

To the left? To the right? There must be a skew!
Should have paid attention to that math review...
Now I find myself lost in stats,
Clinging to each word spoken in class.

My classmates beside me,
Know just what to do.
But my mere survival is in the hands of
My TI-82.

You just can't imagine the agony and grief
As I struggle to plot another stem, another leaf!
Coffee disappears as I sit at the cafe,
Crunching data sets in back-to-back display.

Stata, I beg you, it just doesn't make sense.
Remind me, which one's a whisker
And which one's a fence?

Logarithms, I feel I live to serve,
But dear Kaplan, dear Meier,
Will I survive the survival curve?

Now the countdown is on,
The mid-term draws near,
And already I'm paralyzed,
Frozen with fear.

Failure is certain from what I can see,
But I'll bet I could calculate it as a probability.

That's right...I think I could.
And know what else I can do?
Marie showed us how to follow Bayes' Rule, too!

It's so cool there's a distribution named after a fish...
And they promised us Nachos,
My favorite dish!

So, think I'm scared of stats?
I'll show you I'm not!
I'll show you with my p values and my QQ plot!

I'll skew those curves to the left and right,
I'll make statistical inferences and stay up all night!
Biostats 620, you ain't got nothing on me.
Just watch me rock those probability.

Biostatistics, Statistical Methods in Public Health I
Department of Biostatistics, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health (2005)
http://www.biostat.jhsph.edu/courses...isc/poetry.htm

16. ## Re: Statistics Poetry

Confidence Interval - an Epic Poem
by Daan van Schalkwijk

A squire teaches the High King statistics to overcome a crisis of confidence,
at risk to his own life. Just when the High King is at loss in whom to confide, a
squire offers to solve his problems by teaching him about confidence intervals;
but when the King's senior sage protests, he must learn to see what statistics
can and cannot do, or the sage will have him on the gallows.

'My dearest people, oh my people'
The High King sighed in his high hall,
'Oh, how my heart desires to know you,
But could I count you? Not at all!'

'So I have sent for sage and wizard,
To tell me how to serve you best.
But do my confidence they merit?
Oh my poor heart won't give me rest.'

'Oh Sire, Sire' cried a squire,
-Was sternly told to keep his still-,
But he went on, 'Thy need, so dire,
I can alleviate; I will!'

'Then let him speak' declared the High King,
A kindly smile shone in his eyes,
'For the advice this lad will offer,
May chance be canny, if not wise.'

'With your permission, Royal Highness'
Up stepped the squire, with rev'rend bow,
'If it be confidence thy seeking,
I can provide it, I know how.'

'A valiant promise, master squire,
Then let us have it, we're all ears.'
A hidden grin ran through the courtiers,
But our stout squire knew no fears.

'Then well, for starters, take a sample,
Take it as random as one can,
From all the people in thy country,
May they be woman, child, or man.'

'Then from the sample, we must measure,
Whichever size thou longst to know.
It could be tallness, wideness, deepness,
Strength of arm or width of bow.'

And now the trick, your Royal Highness,
That thee will grant thy dream so dear:
It from the averaged sample measure,
Will know your people without fear.'

'I do object, your Royal Highness'
Cried out the kingdom's senior sage,
'What madness does this scoundrel tell us,
So hot of blood and young of age?' ...

(continued at http://scienceandbeyond.blogspot.de/...epic-poem.html)

17. ## Re: Statistics Poetry

The Generalized Linear Model
by John K. Kruschke

Straight and proportionate, deep in your core
All is orthogonal, ceiling to floor.
But on the outside the vines creep and twist
'round all the parapets shrouded in mist.

From Chapter 15 of the book Doing Bayesian Data Analysis.
The poem is explained here, using color coding and puppies.

18. ## Re: Statistics Poetry

The Garden’s Forking Paths
by John Schmidt (with apologies to Robert Frost)

TWO paths diverged on a garden lane,
And knowing I could pick either one
And still seem science-y, saw my gain
And looked down one magnificent vein
To where it twisted toward psych stardom

Then saw the other, not quite as fair,
Though having perhaps a higher claim,
Because it was straighter and lacked in flair;
But then, thought I, who would ev’n care?
I’m sure they’re really about the same…

And both — that morning — equally paid
But wait, it’s just what my grant lacked!
Oh, I’ll take the first for just today
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
In some great conference keynote hence:
Two path diverged in a garden, why —
I took the one with flair beside,
And that has made all the difference.

The garden of forking paths is a concept proposed by Andrew Gelman and Erik Loken.
If data selection, data preparation and data analysis are contingent on the
dataset at hand, this will lead to biased results, even if the researcher avoids
fishing and p-hacking.

The poem can be found here.

Closed Thread
Page 2 of 2 First 1 2

 Tweet

#### Posting Permissions

• You may not post new threads
• You may not post replies
• You may not post attachments
• You may not edit your posts