23 May

Back to the stats

Back to the stats, now 2015 compared to 2012.

It’s a chronological jump but it’s best to go back in whilst my mind is still working in the right stats frameworks.

Terrible news re Manchester.

LGVs at Newcastle Uni 2015 versus 2012

LGVs at Newcastle Uni 2015 versus 2012

Off to theatres tonight to see ‘Out of Order’, which is a farce, so probably ‘Oops Vicar are these your knickers?’

Well two-thirds through of Good Wife Series 4, and similar through The Americans Series 4.

 

17 May

End of V-Con

This will mean nothing to anyone but me a few others but today I attended the final V-Con project review that I have been the reviewer of for the last 4-5 years. It has been fascinating to see a project from the outside not the inside for a change, and it has also been very interesting to see a totally new approach to the public funding of innovative research (PCP).

The project was about developing a semantic based approach to maintain compliance between different ontologies in infrastructure building information modeling (BIM) and that was very interesting and successful, they have a working group for an ISO/CEN already.

I feel a little sad since I expect Brexit will diminish and prevent the roles I have had in the internationalisation of research and innovation, but it was great to see a project perform excellently and achieve impact.

05 May

Chapter 4 done!

About 20:30 I laid my penultimate draft of Chapter 4: Context and Observations, or as I think of it, ‘When I went to war with stats, and won”. I read it back to write the summary and I am quite proud of all I have done. Cleaned 2 huge datasets, used VLOOKUP, INDEX, MATCH, array formulae, specified and deployed perl (no I didn’t code it, but specced it), brought my SPSS skillset up from ‘barely remember it’ to nicely whizz, and more importantly started to conceptually understand when to use what, and more importantly to recognise when it can’t help. I had some great support from two great a statisticians, one a real expert, and I now begin to see that there is as much craft in stats as numbers.. It’s a huge chapter, nearly 80 pages, and 15k words, but a lot of the page count is tables and figures and screenshots, which is appropriate and means that the work is very reproducible. That’s important since after the PhD, I want to take the other 3 years and analyse them as well. I suspect there are 2 papers at least from this one methodology and data alone. Mind you, it’ll need reading back at the end to tease out some more, or bury some errors..

Off to see young Oliver in North Hykeham, Lincoln, Saturday, and see how much he’s grown. I am really rather looking forward to seeing him, and I am taking mr Dr Who mister men books to read with him.

Oh, and Monday I start Chapter 6, Business Models. I think that might be smoother.

 

04 May

May the 4th be with me

I got up about 8 and settled down on the sofa for a change.. and opened up a big stats file and jumped right in. It’s got me in it’s grip, so when the Muse is with me it’s great, but I do miss seeing people and networking and all that. It’s been really sunny here but much colder than a few weeks ago, but the sun’s great through our big windows.

At 4pm (how appropriate) my birthday started proper with some great pressies. Janet got me some of the Roger Hargreaves Dr. Who books, the First, Fourth and 11th Doctors. Very jolly and I will be able to share them with young Oliver!

Books

Dr Books

Ann had got me, as well as some new aftershave, a bloody great headset for my Xbox One S, a Turtle Beach no less:

Headset

Headset

I tried it out playing Forza Horizon and it has great sound, is very comfortable and the sound is awesomely good. Ann need not be bothered with the noise and we can be together, she can knit and I’ll play games.

Matthew got me the 10.5 year Anniversary edition of Brian Froud’s Goblins book. I had a much earlier edition years ago but lost it, or maybe it never was mine, so it was a great present. Oddly, I feel the goblins may have got at it before it got to me!

In addition Ann got me a very cool sign for the games room:

Beware of Zombies

Beware of Zombies

But the peace de la resistance (as Del Boy might say), is the very big, very heavy and very cool giant D6..

Then we went to Santanas, one of our fave restaurants and had some great food and I got the giant birthday Tiramisu!

It has been a great birthday, thanks everyone and especially Ann who was even willing to give up cheese for me.. but let’s not go mad, eh?

30 Apr

Slow and steady progress on traffic survey

Up at 7:30am, settled to desk about 8:30am and worked steadily in SPSS on traffic survey. Did lots of normality tests, then started to look at ranges and medians for dwell times. Stopped at 3:10pm, might read some stats book later re correlation but I suspect I won’t, I’m done for the day. It’s coming together in my mind now how the final shape of this Chapter 4 (yes I know I have already done Chapter 5, treat this as an episode of Doctor Who) will end and why, as a useful input to Chapter 7 and then 8. Going to have to replan my work tho’, this is going to take longer than I had hoped and planned.

 

29 Apr

Good Day, SPSS under control, maybe Stats done soon?

I’ve over run by weeks on the stats for the baseline. I planned 2 weeks and it’s going to be 4 or maybe 5. However the job takes as long as it take in this case and I feel I have gained understanding and much greater mastery than I have had before. Not only that but the results are functionally useful, which as a pragmatist researcher is always important.

Purchasing Volume

Pairwise Test for Variance

In other news, Spooks all watched, Mutant and Masterminds bought and Peter Kay’s Car Share is excellent.

16 Apr

Good day

Freakin’ hard day to start up, felt like sh*t, but dug my feet in and just started plugging away and it started to come into focus and the words and charts started flowing. ’nuff said, it’s 19:37 and I am clocked off and going to watch TV. Not sure I like Ann being away.

 

15 Apr

Stats and a wall

The stats really came together yesterday, Good Friday, but hit a bit of a wall today. I need a crib sheet to understand the old material groups, and I get that until Tuesday, at the earliest. However tomorrow I can write up the process I have followed so far and that may take me all Sunday. Would be great and I need a break from numbers.

Then on Monday I can go back and input the traffic survey stats into spss and be ready for my next meeting with Shirley.

So good day Friday yesterday less good day Saturday. Think I shall watch “the man in the high Castle” season two tonight.

Ann is doing a tour of friends in South Yorkshire so as to allow the space to work. Silly thing is I miss her like crazy already.

11 Apr

back to Stats

back to Stats!

Finished some traffic survey crunching Monday and sent to Shirley C. Then wrangled some purchase stats Tuesday and send to Simon K. Popped to see Mark R for a GANTT chart review. Progress is made and Weds I see Simon K for his feedback. Then I shall have to see if I carry on with the stats over Easter whilst Ann is away, or engage with Chapter 6: Business Model Generation.

In other news I have been daydreaming of running a killer hard old skool dungeon game modelled around Dark Souls, running a Mutants and Masterminds superhero game, doodling ideas for a d8 based JCRPG inspired rpg set in Gwenthia. Oh and we are on Spooks series 8.

Now.. if you understood 20% of that lot you understand me far more than any one should!

 

08 Apr

Design, Monitoring and Evaluation

I had a headache so I bypassed another day working the data sets in the spreadsheets and picked up a book on design, monitoring and evaluation frameworks I have bought. Very pleased I did, lots of very nice ideas and matrices I can use in Chapter 8, 9 and probably even 7.

In other news I planted out the marigolds, had hot tub, and read a review of the Dark Souls boardgame. I have read the overview, which is not quite the same as a play review in Tabletop Games magazine. The conceit seems the same as DS, in that you collect souls and can eventually trade them in. You fight hollows, and encounter traps. Eventually you meet a mini boss. The mini boss is run by a card based AI, that means that the mini boss has some predictability. So you die. Then you respawn and go in again, and the miniboss is driven by the same card AI. I am not sure but I think it may be that each time you play, as in a full game, the cards the minibosses get are random. SO a miniboss has a repeatability and predictability in each game you play, but not *between* games.. each game is different. That seems clever way to replicate the ‘learn the bosses’ feature but keep the game fresh. Of course eventually you hope to meet the BIG boss.

Weather has been really nice here. Mike and Amy have bought a new house.