Episode 3

#3.1 What is Probabilistic Programming & Why use it, with Colin Carroll

When speaking about Bayesian statistics, we often hear about « probabilistic programming » — but what is it? Which languages and libraries allow you to program probabilistically? When is Stan, PyMC, Pyro or any other probabilistic programming language most appropriate for your project? And when should you even use Bayesian libraries instead of non-bayesian tools, like Statsmodels or Scikit-learn?

Colin Carroll will answer all these questions for you. Colin is a machine learning researcher and software engineer who’s notably worked on modeling risk in the airline industry and building NLP-powered search infrastructure for finance. He’s also an active contributor to open source, particularly to the popular PyMC3 and ArviZ libraries.

Having studied geometric measure theory at Rice University, Colin was bound to walk in the woods with Pete the pup – who was there when we recorded by the way – and to launch balloons into near-space in his spare time.

Our theme music is « Good Bayesian », by Baba Brinkman (feat MC Lars and Mega Ran). Check out his awesome work at https://bababrinkman.com/!

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About the Podcast

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Learning Bayesian Statistics
A podcast on Bayesian inference - the methods, the projects and the people who make it possible!

About your host

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Alexandre ANDORRA

Hi! I'm your host, Alex Andorra. By day, I'm a Bayesian modeler at the PyMC Labs consultancy. By night, I don't (yet) fight crime, but I'm an open-source enthusiast and core contributor to the awesome Python packages PyMC and ArviZ.

An always-learning statistician, I love building models and studying elections and human behavior. I also love Nutella a bit too much, but I don't like talking about it – I prefer eating it.

My goal is to make this podcast as interesting and useful to you as possible. So, hit me on Twitter or email with your questions and suggestions!