Aki points out that in cases of antithetical sampling, our effective sample size calculations were unduly truncated above at the number of iterations. It turns out the effective sample size can be greater than the number of iterations if the draws are anticorrelated. And all we really care about for speed is effective sample size […]

**MCMC**

## Interactive visualizations of sampling and GP regression

You really don’t want to miss Chi Feng‘s absolutely wonderful interactive demos. (1) Markov chain Monte Carlo sampling I believe this is exactly what Andrew was asking for a few Stan meetings ago: Chi Feng’s Interactive MCMC Sampling Visualizer This tool lets you explore a range of sampling algorithms including random-walk Metropolis, Hamiltonian Monte Carlo, […]

## ShinyStan v2.0.0

For those of you not familiar with ShinyStan, it is a graphical user interface for exploring Stan models (and more generally MCMC output from any software). For context, here’s the post on this blog first introducing ShinyStan (formerly shinyStan) from earlier this year. ShinyStan v2.0.0 released ShinyStan v2.0.0 is now available on CRAN. This is […]

## A Stan is Born

Stan 1.0.0 and RStan 1.0.0 It’s official. The Stan Development Team is happy to announce the first stable versions of Stan and RStan. What is (R)Stan? Stan is an open-source package for obtaining Bayesian inference using the No-U-Turn sampler, a variant of Hamiltonian Monte Carlo. It’s sort of like BUGS, but with a different language […]

## Learning Differential Geometry for Hamiltonian Monte Carlo

You can get a taste of Hamiltonian Monte Carlo (HMC) by reading the very gentle introduction in David MacKay’s general text on information theory: MacKay, D. 2003. Information Theory, Inference, and Learning Algorithms. Cambridge University Press. [see Chapter 31, which is relatively standalone and can be downloaded separately.] Follow this up with Radford Neal’s much […]