Monday, December 29, 2008

Lyx as an equation viewer

Lyx's new "view source" panel makes it an ideal WYSIWYG equation editor for LaTeX, just like MathType.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Fortran on Linux

Useful web site on this topic:


A reincarnation of the old mixed-effect programs:

Will be interesting to find out more about it, especially what it can do while others (Stata, aML, Mplus, etc.) cannot.

A major advantage of xpdf over acrobat

Using Acrobat pdf reader, I have to close the reader every time I re-compile my LaTeX source, which is tedious. This is not the case of xpdf. Xpdf works the same way as xdvi or yap: it automatically updates the pdf file.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Research in Social Stratification and Mobility

This journal also accept:

Journal of Population Economics

Also allows LaTeX submission:

Scientific Commons

They did a good job tracking my work in progress:

Thursday, December 25, 2008


This R package ( looks interesting. For one thing: it can do Conway's game of life.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Getting Stata graphs into LaTeX

Under Linux, the easiest way would be to export Stata graphs to EPS format, then use the command line tool "epstopdf" to get them into PDF.

Interestingly, this procedure does not seem to work under Windows.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Another paper

I was informed that my paper "Does famine have a long-term effect on cohort mortality? Evidence from the 1959-1961 Great Leap Forward Famine in China" has been accepted for publication at Journal of Biosocial Science.

The working paper version can be found here:

Monday, December 22, 2008

Writing posters using LaTeX

I have two posters to do for PAA 2009, and just found this article showing how to do posters using LaTeX:

Start Cygwin with rxvt

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Bridging R and Python

Project RPy looks promising:

Saturday, December 20, 2008

LaTeX: turn off section numbering

Put this before the "\begin{document}": \setcounter{secnumdepth}{0} .

Friday, December 19, 2008

How is Microsoft with Vista like the Big Three automakers?

Interesting observation:

More LaTeX resources


Thursday, December 18, 2008


A Chinese web site dedicated to statistical technique:

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


Finally, an open-source cross-platform and easy-to-use mind mapping software:

Quantitative Data Analysis: Doing Social Research to Test Ideas

I am really glad to see Don's new book is out:
It is one of the best textbooks on the market that can help social science students and applied researchers to learn data analysis using Stata.

Ecological Models and Data in R

Good book:

Stata and R graph examples

  • Stata graph gallery:;
  • R graph gallery:

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Demographic Research

Demographic Research ( is the only population journal that takes LaTeX submission. I hope there will be more adopters soon.

How to write a book using LaTeX, R, and Sweave

Small is beautiful

I agree with the Economist on this:

Monday, December 15, 2008

Text summarizer

This looks interesting:

Saturday, December 13, 2008

MiKTeX for Linux

Will be interesting to check out when it matures a little:

Writing journal article using LaTeX

I have been intimated by the fact that many journals, especially in the filed of social science, accept only Word format submission. Writing in Word has been a terrible experience for me: error-prone, hard to automate, etc. But I have not been brave enough to go out and explore the possibility to mainly work on LaTeX and figure out ways to get the final draft into Word.

After some research, I think now I have all the tools that can handle all the important aspects of this process, and I am going to write my next paper - smoking in China - in LaTeX and see how it eventually turns out.

As a teacher, I will definitely teach students how to combine Linux, Emacs, LaTeX, Stata, estout, R, and sweave to automate the process of data analysis and results reporting. Maybe that will make a difference in the future.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Linux laptop

I especially like the System 76 (for its Ubuntu-specific feature) and Los Alamos (for its Thinkpad hardware, they even offer the new ultraportable X300!), and really wish that they could combine strength.

ESS (Emacs speaks statistics) has a new version out today

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

This is unbelivable

Open source and acedemia

Interesting materials:

Bash vs. Python


Emacs as Python IDE

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Linux and the Unix philosophy

A very good book. It should be one of the first readings any college student should do, in my opinion.

Here is part of the book made available by Google Books:

OpenOffice 3 on Ubuntu

The broken Ubuntu repository for OO3 has been fixed. Now it is possible to follow the instruction to upgrade from OO 2.4 to OO 3:

Here is an interesting review of different open source office suites:

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Creating R packages

Here are some detailed instructions:

NIH proposal in LaTeX

I never would think NIH proposal can be done in LaTeX:

Another truly amzing LaTeX resource:

How to write a LaTeX package:

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Automatic table making using R

R provides several facilities to automate the table making process. The XTABLE package can produce summary tables and tables for single model results. HMISC and DESIGN have some facilities to get the results into LaTeX (I have not tried them); MEMISC can produce multiple model result table; and this tiny package, APSRTABLE, seems to provide quavalent functionality and more flexible.

Here is another approach and some examples:

Using g++ with numerical recipes

Some instructions:

Here is another interesting post:

Ubuntu vs. OSX

  1. How to install Ubuntu on a Macbook:
  2. Ubuntu vs. OSX:
Now I realize that these two posts were from the same person:

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Two more papers of mine

Netbeans and gfortran

I know that Eclipse has a good FORTRAN ide called Photran. I also know that Sun has a compote FORTRAN development tool chains called Sun Studio. What I did not know is that Netbeans itself is a good IDE for gfortran, the default FORTRAN compiler for most Linux distros today.

Here is a really simple debugging session.

Python 3

Python 3 has been released: It will be interesting how well it is received by the majority of Python programmer.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Automatic table making using Stata

Definitive guidelines:

Monday, December 01, 2008

LaTeX to other format

Here is a solution:

Here is another one:

And this one:

A summary:

For equations: