## Tag: Just for Fun

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My upcoming Twi(n)tter-view

What do you call an interview on Twitter? A Tw-interview? A Twitter-view? Regardless of what you call it, I'm going to be involved in a "live chat" on Twitter this coming Thursday, 10NOV2011, 1:30–2:00pm ET. The hashtag is #saspress. Shelly Goodin (@SASPublishing) and SAS Press author recruiter Shelley Sessoms (@SSessoms)

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Matrices and mattresses

Birds migrate south in the fall. Squirrels gather nuts. Humans also have behavioral rituals in the autumn. I change the batteries in my smoke detectors, I switch my clocks back to daylight standard time, and I turn the mattress on my bed. The first two are relatively easy. There's even

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A math puzzle solution

I previously wrote about an intriguing math puzzle that involves 5-digit numbers with certain properties. This post presents my solution in the SAS/IML language. It is easy to generate all 5-digit perfect squares, but the remainder of the problem involves looking at the digits of the squares. For this reason,

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A math puzzle: 5-digit squares with certain properties

I was intrigued by a math puzzle posted to the SAS Discussion Forum (from New Scientist magazine). The problem is repeated below, but I have added numbers in brackets because I am going to comment on each clue: [1] I have written down three different 5-digit perfect squares, which [2]

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How I Know When to Blog

Yesterday, Jiangtang Hu did a frequency analysis of my blog posts and noticed that there are some holidays on which I post to my blog and others on which I do not. The explanation is simple: I post on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, provided that SAS Institute (World Headquarters) is

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Blogging, programming, and Johari windows

My primary purpose in writing The DO Loop blog is to share what I know about statistical programming in general and about SAS programming in particular. But I also write the blog for various personal reasons, including the enjoyment of writing. The other day I encountered a concept on Ajay

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A statistical model of card shuffling

I recently returned from a five-day conference in Las Vegas. On the way there, I finally had time to read a classic statistical paper: Bayer and Diaconis (1992) describes how many shuffles are needed to randomize a deck of cards. Their famous result that it takes seven shuffles to randomize

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The sound of the Dow...in SAS

At the beginning of 2011, I heard about the Dow Piano, which was created by CNNMoney.com. The Dow Piano visualizes the performance of the Dow Jones industrial average in 2010 with a line plot, but also adds an auditory component. As Bård Edlund, Art Director at CNNMoney.com, said, The daily

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Significant changes for SAS blogs

Editor's Note: This article was an April Fool's prank from 2011. The entire article is fake. Today, SAS, the leader in business analytics announces significant changes to two popular SAS blogs, The DO Loop (written by Rick Wicklin) and The SAS Dummy (previously written by Chris Hemedinger). The two blogs

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A parametric view of love

If you tell my wife that she's married to a statistical geek, she'll nod knowingly. She is used to hearing sweet words of affection such as You are more beautiful than Euler's identity. or My love for you is like the exponential function: increasing, unbounded, and transcendental. But those are

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Super Bowl pools and Roman numerals

I enjoyed the Dataists' data-driven blog on the best numbers to choose in a Super Bowl betting pool. It reminded me of my recent investigation of which initials are most common. Because the Dataists' blog featured an R function that converts Arabic numerals into Roman numerals, the blog post also

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Automating the Great Christmas Gift Exchange

In many families, siblings draw names so that each family member and spouse gives and receives exactly one present. This year there was a little bit of controversy when a family member noticed that once again she was assigned to give presents to me. This post includes my response to

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Placing the digits of a number into a vector

I enjoy reading about the Le Monde puzzles (and other topics!) at Christian Robert's blog. Recently he asked how to convert a number with s digits into a numerical vector where each element of the vector contains the corresponding digit (by place value). For example, if the number is 4321,

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Resampling and simulating my grocery bills

In a previous post, I used statistical data analysis to estimate the probability that my grocery bill is a whole-dollar amount such as \$86.00 or \$103.00. I used three weeks' grocery receipts to show that the last two digits of prices on items that I buy are not uniformly distributed.

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The statistics of my grocery bill

The other day I was at the grocery store buying a week's worth of groceries. When the cashier, Kurt (not his real name), totaled my bill, he announced, "That'll be ninety-six dollars, even." "Even?" I asked incredulously. "You mean no cents?" "Yup," he replied. "It happens." "Wow," I said, with

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Solving scrambled-word puzzles

Have you ever been stuck while trying to solve a scrambled-word puzzle? You stare and stare at the letters, but no word reveals itself? You are stumped. Stymied. I hope you didn't get stumped on the word puzzle I posted as an anniversary present for my wife. She breezed through

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A few people asked me to explain the significance of the cartoon in the scrambled-word puzzle that I posted as an anniversary present for my wife. The cartoon refers to a famous experiment devised by Sir Ronald A. Fisher.

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A statistical word puzzle!

Today's post is a puzzle. Why? Well, my wife loves solving word puzzles, and today is our wedding anniversary. Last year, I bought her a Jumble® book. This year, I've created a one-of-a-kind scrambled word puzzle just for her. (But you can play, too!) I created this puzzle by using

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Scrambling (and unscrambling) words

My previous post on creating a random permutation started me thinking about word games. My wife loves to solve the daily Jumble® puzzle that runs in our local paper. The puzzle displays a string of letters like MLYBOS, and you attempt to unscramble the letters to make an ordinary word.