I Want One...

This might be the coolest bookcase ever designed into a house, and I want this for my home office [see more photos].

Football Time Plots

Here is a sneak peak at some of the work that Brandon and I have been doing. After a year of mining data, cleaning data, and mostly figuring out how to web scrape, we finally have some data to work with. The following three plots show time series plots for the University of Minnesota, the University of Texas at Austin, and the University of Iowa (for Lauren, Charles, and Tom).

On the y-axis we have plotted the difference in points scored (PF – PA) for each game in the school's football program history (at least as recorded by College Football Data Warehouse). We also show the y = 0 line (games plotted above that line are wins, games plotted below the line are losses). The box-and-whiskers plots cover ten-year spans to give an indication of decade-by-decade performance. (For those who have forgotten how to read a box-and-whiskers plot, the line inside the box is the median. The length of the box visually displays the variation in the middle 50% of the data. The whiskers extend to the furthest observation that is not a potential outlier.) Lastly, we plotted the integrated smoothness estimate based on the generalized additive model (think 'trend'!). The 95% confidence envelope around the smoother displays the uncertainty in the trend (think 'the real value could be anywhere in there').

The trends in these plots is quite striking. Minnesota has definitely seen better days (the last 40 years look as bad as I feel most Saturdays). Texas, not surprisingly, in all but a couple decades seems to have won at least 75% of their games. Iowa shows quite a lot of fluctuation, but the good(?) news–at least for Tom–is that they are trending upward in recent years.

Once we merge the data we have, I should be able to color the points by coach (think 'bad news for Brewster')!



Bookshelf Porn is a sweet website. Their tagline is: "Porn for book lovers. A photo blog collection of all the best bookshelf photos from around the world for people who *heart* bookshelves."

I want one.


From the Walker Newspaper

Media conglomerate that it is, the Pilot Independent of Walker, MN occasionally runs out of things to report on. Here are a couple of the headline stories featuring my folks:

Dinner guests of Fritz and Margaret Zieffler March 5 were Bess and Hap Knobloch, Joni and Stan Kumpula and Evelyn Jones. It was a special occasion to surprise Hap on his birthday and help Fritz celebrate his belated Feb. 1 birthday. Entertainment was provided by two dozen does and fawns,who gathered on the lake to romp around and look longingly at the picture window, hoping for a bite to eat.

Another gem:

The Women's Fellowship of Union Church met March 14 at the Friendship Hall. Hostesses Margaret Zieffler, Bess Knobloch and Evelyn Jones served a delectable dessert to the 19 members who were present. In the tradition of St. Patrick's Day, the tables were dressed in green. Devotions were given by Bess Knobloch. Fellowship President Elinor Chase officiated at a short business meeting. We were showered with purple carnations in honor of St. Urho Day. Entertainment was a Finnish jig and song presented by Joni Kumpula.

Digital Scrapbook: Seth "The Man" Keeler

Seth Keeler.....nothing more really needs to be said. This photo, which appeared in the St. Cloud Times, was taken December 31, 1993. In the background is Sarah Louiselle. 

A group of 1992 Apollo High School graduates and their friends spent the last day of 1993 playing broomball at the Lake George skating rink in St. Cloud. The rink was even slipperier than usual due to a light dusting of snow that had fallen earlier in the day. St. Cloud State University student Seth Keeler, foreground, St. Cloud, tried to brush the ball toward the goal as he was being pursued by opponent Jon Anderson, an Oral Roberts University student in Tulsa, Okla.

More Old Pics

My 8th grade social studies picture.
Roger Vetruba, Darren Catello and me (c. 1991)

Sandra and me (c. 1994)

Family Photos

Sandra's Senior Photo

Dad, Mom & Snadra

The Zieffler Family


A Little Mapping with ggplot2

I put together a little map of the Golden Gophers 2011 football season using the mapping functionality in ggplot2. I once again did the postprocessing in Inkscape since inserting images in R is not a super-awesome process. Maybe once I get Phrank (my computer) back I can update imageMagick and get the EBimage package working.

Some things that I want to do yet: First, I want a better color palette for the wins and losses. I also thought about sizing the arcs by point differential, but maybe I should wait a year or two given the losses we have had in past years. Eventually I want to make the map interactive so you can choose a team and then see this type of map for every year.