Bayesian Analysis with Python-Packt Publishing(2016).epub

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Bayesian statistics has been around for more than 250 years now. During this time it has enjoyed as much recognition and appreciation as disdain and contempt. Through the last few decades it has gained more and more attention from people in statistics and almost all other sciences, engineering, and even outside the walls of the academic world. This revival has been possible due to theoretical and computational developments. Modern Bayesian statistics is mostly computational statistics. The necessity for flexible and transparent models and a more interpretation of statistical analysis has only contributed to the trend. Here, we will adopt a pragmatic approach to Bayesian statistics and we will not care too much about other statistical paradigms and their relationship to Bayesian statistics. The aim of this book is to learn about Bayesian data analysis with the help of Python. Philosophical discussions are interesting but they have already been undertaken elsewhere in a richer way than we can discuss in these pages. We will take a modeling approach to statistics, we will learn to think in terms of probabilistic models, and apply Bayes' theorem to derive the logical consequences of our models and data. The approach will also be computational; models will be coded using PyMC3—a great library for Bayesian statistics that hides most of the mathematical details and computations from the user. Bayesian methods are theoretically grounded in probability theory and hence it's no wonder that many books about Bayesian statistics are full of mathematical formulas requiring a certain level of mathematical sophistication. Learning the mathematical foundations of statistics could certainly help you build better models and gain intuition about problems, models, and results. Nevertheless, libraries, such as PyMC3 allow us to learn and do Bayesian statistics with only a modest mathematical knowledge, as you will be able to verify by yourself throughout this book.

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