Staff Notes Daily Announcements

A Computationally Efficient Projection-Based Approach for Spatial Generalized Linear Mixed Models

Yawen Guan
Pennsylvania State University

Inference for spatial generalized linear mixed models (SGLMMs) for high-dimensional non-Gaussian spatial data is computationally intensive. The computational challenge is due to the high-dimensional random effects and because Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) algorithms for these models tend to be slow mixing. Moreover, spatial confounding inflates the variance of fixed effect (regression coefficient) estimates. Our approach addresses both the computational and confounding issues by replacing the high-dimensional spatial random effects with a reduced-dimensional representation based on random projections. Standard MCMC algorithms mix well and the reduced-dimensional setting speeds up computations per iteration. We show, via simulated examples, that Bayesian inference for this reduced-dimensional approach works well both in terms of inference as well as prediction; our methods also compare favorably to existing "reduced-rank" approaches. We also apply our methods to two real world data examples, one on bird count data and the other classifying rock types. This is a joint work with Murali Haran. 

Wednesday, September 28, 2016
12:00-1:00 pm
Mesa Lab, Chapman Room
(Bring your lunch)


Posted by Kathy Peczkowicz at ext. 2431,

Friday, September 23, 2016 to Wednesday, September 28, 2016
Please enter your FY2016 metrics into the Metrics Database ( Friday, Oct. 28 so your Staff Directory metrics and individual Activity Report are current and our year end reporting to NSF is accurate!
Please take a few minutes to enter your metrics if you have:
  • Served on a thesis committee
  • Served as a journal editor
  • Received an external award or honor
  • Contributed to K-12 activities
  • Mentored a colleague
  • Presented a poster or talk
  • Served on an external committee
  • Served on an internal committee
  • Gone on a collaborative staff leave greater than 2 weeks
  • Taught in a college classroom
  • Taught in a Workshop/Tutorial

Metrics Updates:
Need help?  Check out the Learn in a Minute Videos - The Metrics Database Series
Click on the link to Videos in the navigation near the top of the page in the database or go directly to the video by clicking on the title below:

Call or email Konnie Phillips at ext. 1101, or your Metrics Maven if you have any questions.  Thanks!

Posted by Helen Moshak at ext. 1112,

Friday, September 23, 2016 to Tuesday, September 27, 2016

The Mesa Lab semi-annual building maintenance shutdown is scheduled for Saturday, 8 October from 6:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m.  During this time the Mesa Lab and Fleischmann Buildings will experience intermittent electrical, heating, and air conditioning interruptions, some for extended periods.

Access to the Mesa Lab will be restricted to authorized employees, and there will be no public access to the building.  Visitors may still use the trails around the building.

CISL will be releasing information regarding the impact of the Mesa Lab Data Center portion of the shutdown in the near future as details become available.

For Mesa Lab Data Center questions, contact Jasen Boyington, ext. 1859 or

Posted by David Maddy at ext. 1134,

Thursday, September 22, 2016 to Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Jim Hurrell and Michael Thompson cordially invite

all UCAR and NCAR employees to the

2nd Annual NCAR Directorate Open House

Wednesday, September 28th from 3:00 - 5:00 pm 

Mesa Lab Tower A - 5th Floor

Enjoy appetizers and beverages with the Directorate and Budget & Planning Staff

and of course amazing views! 

Posted by Kara Mayock at ext. 2188,

Thursday, September 22, 2016 to Monday, September 26, 2016

AGU is conducting a free workshop to help scientists share their science with the public and policy makers in a clear and engaging way. The hands-on workshop will help scientists prepare compelling remarks for their target audience, and learn how to handle controversial topics or unreceptive audiences.

Date: Oct. 19
Time: 12:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. (Lunch is provided at 11:30)
Location: Colorado State University, Lory Student Center, Room 312
Registration details here.  (Seating is limited)

In addition, the AGU Sharing Science program is looking for scientists with experience in science communication to serve as mentors to graduate students at the 2016 Fall Meeting (Dec. 12-16 in San Francisco). Click here if interested or if you have questions, email

Posted by Jeff Smith at ext. 2679,

Thursday, September 22, 2016 to Friday, October 7, 2016

There is still time to register for this course: Generations Working Together

Date: 9/28/16

Time: 1:00 PM - 4:30 PM

Location: FL2-1002


To help participants recognize and gain a greater understanding of the unique needs of different generations in the workforce. A generation is defined as a society-wide peer group which possesses a commonality of experiences. These common experiences result in members of the same generation sharing common attitudes and behaviors. Differences among generations can negatively affect the work environment, and, if not addressed, may create rifts in the workplace. Participants will spend time understanding how communication and motivation can differ among generations. Through class activities, participants will gain skills to work more effectively with members of different generations.

Register at: EOD Training Catalog -

(UCAS login>Training Catalog>Search by class>Details>Enroll)

Ensure pop-ups are allowed for the site in your browser.

Contact Toni Wallace, for access information.

Posted by Toni Wallace at ext. 8716,

Wednesday, September 21, 2016 to Wednesday, September 28, 2016

A “Cloud Physics Science Discovery Day” workshop will be held on Tuesday, September 27, 2016, in the FL1 EOL Atrium, to focus on activities at NCAR associated with Cloud Physics/Cloud Processes. Workshop presentations will be made by scientists at NCAR, with interests in the areas of Cloud Processes, Cloud Physics/Microphysics, Cloud Radiation, and Cloud Remote Sensing Measurements. The objectives of the meeting, limited to those at NCAR/UCAR, include:

1.   To learn what research is ongoing at NCAR in cloud microphysics and cloud dynamics,

2.   To explore the frontiers in this field as represented by NCAR research,

3.   To develop improved collaborations across divisions on cloud topics.

The workshop will comprise a set of talks and open discussions. The workshop is open to all NCAR employees. The agenda for the workshop is available at:

Andy Heymsfield, Roy Rasmussen and Jeff Stith

Posted by Kris Marwitz at ext. 8198,

Tuesday, September 20, 2016 to Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Join the UCAR Center for Science Education (SciEd) for our Spectacular Super Science Saturday Event! Mark your calendar for November 5th and come help us with this fun annual event.

Super Science Saturday is NCAR's largest public event and is designed to increase public science literacy by bringing kids and adults together to explore hands-on activities, think about new ideas, learn about science, and highlight the exciting scientific research happening in Boulder and the surrounding communities!

This year's theme is "Our Changing Climate".

UCAR/NCAR/UCP staff help to make the event fun, meaningful, and informative by greeting the public and providing general information, engaging the public in simple science education activities, or assisting our Science Wizards.

Please consider volunteering for one of the following shifts:

9:30 am – 1:00 pm

12:30 pm – 4:30 pm

Click on the link below to sign up to volunteer with us at this amazing event:

Posted by Natalie Ponsford at ext. 2585,

Tuesday, September 20, 2016 to Saturday, November 5, 2016

Last Monday, five semi trucks loaded down with NCAR's next supercomputer, Cheyenne, arrived at the NCAR-Wyoming Supercomputing Center after a long drive from Wisconsin. See pictures and learn more here. (Story by Laura Snider, Senior Science Writer and PIO)

Posted by Laura Snider at ext. 8605,

Tuesday, September 20, 2016 to Monday, September 26, 2016

Parents’ Night Out is a great opportunity for you and your significant other to go out to dinner and a movie!

Contact Stephanie Ivancic, Director of UCAR's Child Care Center, to sign your child up from 6 pm - 8 pm ($30 for one child or $40 for two children) or 6 pm - 10 pm ($50 for one child and $60 for two children).

Children are welcome to wear their pajamas for a fun evening of movies and pizza! If your child has a video that he or she would like to share, bring it along! Please make sure it is labeled and let the fun begin! Siblings under the age of 7 are welcome, too.

We invite all UCAR employees to take advantage of this fun evening as your child does not need to be enrolled at the UCAR Child Care Center to partake! 

Mark your calendars for future dates: October 14 and 28; November 11, and December 2, 10 (Saturday) and 16.

Please contact Stephanie Ivancic for enrollment as well as drop-in care rates.  Stephanie’s email address is and her phone number is 303-443-5595.

Posted by Laurie Carr at ext. 8702,

Monday, September 19, 2016 to Friday, September 30, 2016