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Brought To You By the Letter R: Microsoft Acquiring Revolution Analytics 105

theodp writes Maybe Bill Gates' Summer Reading this year will include The Art of R Programming. Pushing further into Big Data, Microsoft on Friday announced it's buying Revolution Analytics, the top commercial provider of software and services for the open-source R programming language for statistical computing and predictive analytics. "By leveraging Revolution Analytics technology and services," blogged Microsoft's Joseph Sirosh, "we will empower enterprises, R developers and data scientists to more easily and cost effectively build applications and analytics solutions at scale." Revolution Analytics' David Smith added, "Now, Microsoft might seem like a strange bedfellow for an open-source company [RedHat:Linux as Revolution Analytics:R], but the company continues to make great strides in the open-source arena recently." Now that it has Microsoft's blessing, is it finally time for AP Statistics to switch its computational vehicle to R?

Comment Re:I am not reading that. (Score 4, Informative) 246

Haselton needs an article about basic statistics. The 95% confidence interval on the difference between the two proportions is 6% +/- 17%, i.e. the range from about -11% to +23%. This (a) demonstrates that the sample is indeed underpowered to distinguish the sort of effect sizes that Haselton appears to be interested in, and (b) demonstrates that a +20% difference in proportion, contrary to Haselton's assertion, absolutely falls within the range of true values that can't be ruled out at a standard level of statistical confidence given the outcome of this experiment.

see http://www.kean.edu/~fosborne/bstat/06d2pop.html for the basic statistics.

Comment Re:Why Bennett is more annoying than he has to be. (Score 4, Funny) 291

Recently I met a gentleman whose profession was gathering up shopping carts in the supermarket parking lot, and he treated me to an extended discourse about the relative merits of the producers of the different Muppet movies. I recognized the classic signs of an autism spectrum disorder ("For example, a person with AS may engage in a one-sided, long-winded speech about a favorite topic, while misunderstanding or not recognizing the listener's feelings or reactions, such as a wish to change the topic of talk or end the interaction."), and for some reason, my thoughts turned to our old friend, Bennett Haselton.


Book Review: Security Without Obscurity 51

benrothke (2577567) writes Having worked at the same consulting firm and also on a project with author J.J. Stapleton (full disclosure); I knew he was a really smart guy. In Security without Obscurity: A Guide to Confidentiality, Authentication and Integrity, Stapleton shows how broad his security knowledge is to the world. When it comes to the world of encryption and cryptography, Stapleton has had his hand in a lot of different cryptographic pies. He has been part of cryptographic accreditation committees for many different standard bodies across the globe. Keep reading for the rest of Ben's review.
United States

How FBI Informant Sabu Helped Anonymous Hack Brazil 59

Daniel_Stuckey (2647775) writes 'A year after leaked files exposed the National Security Agency's efforts to spy on citizens and companies in Brazil, previously unpublished chat logs obtained by Motherboard reveal that while under the FBI's supervision, Hector Xavier Monsegur, widely known by his online persona, "Sabu," facilitated attacks that affected Brazilian websites.The operation raises questions about how the FBI uses global Internet vulnerabilities during cybercrime investigations, how it works with informants, and how it shares information with other police and intelligence agencies.

After his arrest in mid-2011, Monsegur continued to organize cyber attacks while working for the FBI. According to documents and interviews, Monsegur passed targets and exploits to hackers to disrupt government and corporate servers in Brazil and several other countries. Details about his work as a federal informant have been kept mostly secret, aired only in closed-door hearings and in redacted documents that include chat logs between Monsegur and other hackers. The chat logs remain under seal due to a protective order upheld in court, but in April, they and other court documents were obtained by journalists at Motherboard and the Daily Dot.'

Comment Re:For real this time? (Score 1) 293

You are overlooking the interesting bit, though:

The team then verified its findings by analysing images from the same area on March 5, three days before the plane disappeared.

"The wreckage wasn't there prior to the disappearance of MH370," Mr Pope said.

Um yeah, I think this is easy to explain


Comment Re:Help us fix the mobile app scrolling (Score 1) 384

One thing that does it (nexus 4/chrome) is a "fling" quickly followed by a touch. Normally the second gesture "catches" the inertial scroll and stops it, but in the slashdot mobile site it tends to be registered as a touch on whatever was scrolling past the finger. I think the same thing sometimes happens for two flings in a row (when it seemed like the first didnt register, but it was just laggy) or a fast fling followed by a touch & hold or slow drag.

Comment Re:97.7% (Score 5, Informative) 881

The 538 website publishes the marginal probabilities of each state's outcome. The random anonymous script that is linked in this story just takes the product of these to compute the joint probability of Obama winning a particular set of states. This is of course a mistake. The probability that Obama wins Pennsylvania and Ohio is not the product of the probability that he wins each state separately, unless those two events are statistically independent. Of course, in reality and in the 538 model, they are not -- if Obama loses Pennsylvania he is also more likely to lose Ohio. I think this mainly accounts for the difference between the 538 prediction and the "prediction" of the random anonymous crap that the story links.

GNU is Not Unix

You Can't Oppose Copyright and Support Open Source 550

Reader gbulmash sends us to his essay on the fallacy of those who would abolish copyright. The argument is that without copyright granting an author the right to set licensing terms for his/her work, the GPL could not be enforced. The essay concludes that if you support the GPL or any open source license (other than public domain), your fight should be not about how to abolish copyright, but how to reform copyright.

Comment Re:pricing versus performance (Score 1) 215

Admittedly I was trying to do email using pine/ssh and it probably would have been more bearable if I had been using a caching IMAP client rather than an interactive shell one. But not all that much better I think. And no, browsing the web didn't work for me at all. As I said, the connection seemed to be going up and down for minutes at a time, and when it was routing at all it was really too slow to even load a webpage.

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