A book by David Freedman

A continuation from my posting, titled circumspect frequentist.

Title: Statistical Models: Theory and Practice (click for the publisher’s website)
My one line review, rather a comment several months ago was

Bias in asymptotic standard errors is not a familiar topic for astronomers

and I don’t understand why I wrote it but I think I came up this comment owing to my pursuit of modeling measurement errors occurring in astronomical researches.

My overall impression of the book was that astronomers might not fancy it because of the cited examples and models quite irrelevant to astronomy. On the contrary, I liked it because it reflects what statistics ought to be in the real data analysis world. This does not mean the book covers every bit of statistics. When you teach statistics, you don’t expect student’s learning curve of statistical logistics is continuous. You only hope that they jump the discontinuity points successfully and you give every effort to lower the steps of these discontinuity points. The book looked to offering comforts to ease such efforts or to hint promises for almost continuous learning curves. The perspective and scope of the book was very impressive to me at that time.

It is sad to learn brilliant minded people passing away before their insights reach others who need them. I admire professors at Berkeley, not only because of their research activities and contributions but also because of their pedagogical contributions to statistics and its applications to many fields including astronomy (J. Neyman and E. Scott. are as familiar to statisticians as to astronomers, for example. Their papers about the spatial distribution of galaxies are, to my knowledge, well sought among astronomers).

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