Monday, September 21, 2009


Qgis is an open-source alternative to Arcview, specially when you install the plug-ins.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009


A new number of the French journal. I have not read it yet (as usual), but the titles of the papers called my attention (e.g. "Fallacious convergence? Williamson’s real wage comparisons under scrutiny")

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

More or less

Is there any other radio show where you can listen to Hal Varian (talking about statistics) and Andrew Gelman ("Do beautiful parents have more daughters?")?
Now the full archives of the show are available on-line!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

I envy Ed Glaeser

I confess. In one year he has posted ten new (and excellent, I am sure) papers in his web page! Besides, he is a great writer. Check out his review of the book on the quarrel between Robert Moses and Jane Jacobs.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Cofffe and Sugar

Hans-Joachim Voth and Jonathan Hersh estimate that the introduction of coffee and sugar led to a 10% increase in welfare. They say that the stagnant wages before 1800 is a distortion caused by the exclusion of these goods from price indexes. Their method of estimation seems very interesting. Two phrases:
"Half of all spending was on beer and bread, and fully three-quarters of all calories came from these two sources alone."
"The reason why seemingly mundane goods like sugar, coffee and tea made a big difference to living standards is that life was not just “nasty, brutish, and short” at their time of introduction – it was also (in culinary terms) grey, boring, and bland."

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

I will not tag this post as "Humor"

Via Mankiw

Napoleon in Russia

Drawn by Charles Minard (1869), the thickness of the lines indicates the size of Napoleon's army on his way to Moscow (1812-1813). Quite macabre, but it is a beautiful graph anyway.