Archive for January, 2009

The Wolfblade trilogy

Posted in Books with tags , , on January 29, 2009 by xi'an

It has been a long while since I read such a good fantasy trilogy: the series of Wolfblade, Warrior, and Warlord by Jennifer Fallon is altogether a very pleasant and enticing read! It has most of the attributes of standard heroic fantasy, but to a limited extent, in that political maneuvering is generally more important there than magical or military skills. The plot revolves around the Wolfblade family and its fight to keep the crown against external and internal enemies. The most detailed characters in the novel are from this family, or closely associated with it, and the female characters are quite exceptionally well-rendered, in particular the (young) family matriarch. Some turns in the story are very climactic and unexpected, like the sudden death of several important characters. There are times when the plot is slightly thinner and the pace too slow, while some choices made by the author, like the rather easy acceptance of slavery, are disputable, but this is nonetheless a high quality series that I found hard to put down!

Researcher positions at INRA

Posted in Statistics, University life on January 28, 2009 by xi'an

There is an opening for six researchers positions in Statistics at INRA the French national research institute in agronomy, food sciences, and genetics. In particular, the unit located at Jouy-en-Josas near Paris is looking for a Bayesian statistician. The guidelines are provided in English there and the dealine is February 27. This is a call for a permanent position as a civil servant, but there is no condition on age nor nationality. Of course, the salary is comparable with salaries in universities and research centers in France, so is not much, a gross 2000 euros per month, but the working conditions and the environment are quite interesting. The persons to contact for the Bayesian position are Alain Trubuil and Hervé Monod. (Not me!)

Ps—There is also an opening for a lecturer position in Statistics at Paris Dauphine, not yet posted. The salary is just as bad as the one above and there are restrictions on applicants like being qualified by the CNU (Conseil National des Universités), but anyone interested should contact me.

Another easy recipe

Posted in Kids, Running with tags on January 27, 2009 by xi'an

I tiramisu11only recently figured out that cooking tiramisu was much easier than it looked! All you need is mascarpone cheese and ladyfinger biscuits. You briefly beat the mascarpone with heavy cream, quickly dip the biscuits in strong coffee, build up layers of each, and end up by spreading pure unsweeted cocoa on top. Et voilà!

Montréal on Friday

Posted in Statistics, University life with tags , , on January 26, 2009 by xi'an

In case you are in Montréal next Friday, I am giving a seminar there at 3:30 on Bayesian model choice based on recent papers with Nicolas Chopin and Jean-Michel Marin. Here are the slides (minus the last ones):

Slides for Bayesian Core

Posted in Statistics on January 25, 2009 by xi'an

In connection with the discussion about reference priors for logistic regression posted two weeks ago, Aleks Jakulin pointed out the possibility to embed the slides for Bayesian Core that correspond to our approach to the logistic regression model into this blog, using Slideshare. This is quite handy, thanks!

Here are Chapter 3:

and Chapter 4:


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