I have retired from Berkeley, effective end-June 2018. However I will continue with light-duty research and professional activities. In particular I have been updating and expanding my open research problems page. But I am focussing more on my ongoing "Probability and the Real World" activities, below.
I am putting some less mathematical posts on medium.com. Listed here, most recent first.
A few more recent blog-like observations are below.
(NEW: June 2021): Three recent book reviews: The "contagion" book is highly recommended.
(October 2020): The Right Way to Think About the Future: scenario planning and probabilistic forecasting. I remain enthusiastic about Tetlock's emphasis on probabilistic forecasting; the link is to a current article of his from Foreign Affairs.
serious contender principle
worked pretty well
2020 Democratic presidential nomination: maximum Predictit prices were
Another 2 minute speech, this time from Persi Diaconis's 75 birthday celebration.
I remain available at low rates .....
(January 2020): Because of my interest in probability assessments for the medium-long term future I always look at the annual Global Risks Report. Here is the entire report and here is the key graphic I discuss in class and popular talks. Looking at predictions from 5 or 10 or 15 years ago gives some sense of how accurate such consensus predictions have been. Unfortunately neither the likelihoods nor the economic impacts are honestly quantitative; they just ask participants to assess "on a scale of 1 to 5" with only verbal descriptions of those numerical meanings. Note that the risks assessed as most serious are climate change related.
(December 2019): I have written both a longer PDF review and a shorter amazon.com review of Ian Stewart's Do Dice Play God: The Mathematics of Uncertainty.
(December 2019): Analogous to Wikipedia's nice "zooming in" demonstration of Brownian scaling, Yucheng Wang has made this MP4 demonstration of the emergence of scale-invariance when we grow a network in the plane by adding random points and using a scale-invariant rule for linking them to the existing network. See this page for explanation.
For many years I supervised these Undergraduate Research Projects.
|Probability Approximations via the Poisson Clumping Heuristic||Springer, 1989|
|Reversible Markov Chains and Random Walks on Graphs (with Jim Fill)||Draft chapters|
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