As I was coming back home on my delayed train from a day-long meeting at work, it occurred to me that I should feel very badly because it is fair to say that, of late, I have neglected my blog. I still like blogging very much — I find it a brilliant way of elaborating concepts and ideas without necessarily needing to reach a state of maturity (as a full, or even a working paper would require).
Yesterday I had my first weird experience with Twitter. I am relatively new to it (I couldn’t really be bothered to use it until earlier this year — although I did have an account set up years ago) and so far I have to say I have actually found it quite fun. And helpful in some cases — eg when advertising our summer school or workshops.
I suppose it was just a matter of time until something not-quite-exciting happened.
In recent weeks I happened to talk to a couple of (very nice!) people, who said they were keen followers of my blog. Alas, since I’ve moved the blog from blogspot to blogdown and hugo, they seem to have lost their RSS feed and so have, in some occasions, missed out on some of the latest posts.
I have to say that I am very happy about the move to blogdown and I really like the current version of the whole site, including the blog.
This month of May I’ve been rather busy giving talks at different places/events.
First, I was in Athens, then I went to give a couple of talks in more “industrial” settings. Then, I did my talk on the Regression Discountuity Design (similar to this), as part of a series of seminars on Evaluation using observational data at the Centre for Statistical Methodology at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.
As I’m preparing to make my way to the airport to go back home, I have a moment to write about these past few days I’ve spent in Athens to visit my friends/colleagues Nikos and Ioannis.
I’ve enjoyed this very much — we have had several interesting discussions on joint research interests, from survival models in health economics (we’re now working on immuno-oncology drugs and issues related with the kind of data you normally get to model in this framework when doing economic evaluation) and its potential development with embedding variable/model selection within the estimation process; to modelling sports data (which is a long-standing passion of both Ioannis’ and mine).
Earlier today, Marta and I tried an exciting experiment while shopping for food. Before we got into the supermarket, we proposed that each of us (including Kobi; 6 years old) guessed how much we’d spend and then, after the first aisle, we’d look at how much we were currently spending (using the time-saver device, which displays real-time data) and revise our guess.
He didn’t really get the updating part — he started with a guess of $\mu=$ £20, which, after seeing data $y_1 =$ £30 at the end of the first aisle (less than half-way through), he revised to $\mu\mid y_1=$ £25… When we explained that he had to go higher because we were already spending £30, he misunderstood and thought we should simply spend more thus suggesting we bought every single crappy item (from chips to biscuits), matching each with one of his friends who would normally have them for snack.
At the end of our little UK-France-Italy tour, we’ve finally got back home. And we had a very nice surprise — this is the first time something like this has happened to me. As we arrived at the border control at Gatwick, the officer asked us where we had flown from and then whether we actually lived in the UK. When we said yes, he came back to us with a big smile and “Well… I don’t really know why would want to, but: welcome home, then!
We’re spending a few days in Paris before going to Florence for a few more days over the Easter break. We’ve not been super lucky with the weather (cold yesterday, rainy today and possibly even more rainy tomorrow — although it definitely got warmer).
Partly because this isn’t our first time (but it’s Kobi’s), we’ve not gone on a massive sight-seeing spree — in fact, we’ve tried to keep him entertained, while not relinquishing every shred of self-respect as adults.
In the past couple of weeks, I’ve been doing lots of work to migrate my website and the blog to a fully-integrated version based on Hugo and blogdown. Plenty of people have written very good and detailed templates on how to migrate from other blogging platforms, so I won’t bother adding mine…
I think overall the transition has been OK — some hiccups mostly due to my limited proficiency with pure html, but I did manage to turn the basic (well, I say basic, but it’s actually pretty good and advanced!
Well, these days being part of the glittering world of show-biz is not necessarily a good thing, but when your life is soooo glamorous that someone feels the unstoppable need to make a biopic of it… well, you really need to embrace your new status as a movie star and enjoy all the perks that life will now throw at you…
I know, I know… This is still about the Eurovision.