There are a few Mathematical Statistics/Statistical Learning Theory blogs I enjoy reading, and wanted to ask on the main site for recommendations of similar theory-focused Statistics/ML blogs, as I thought it may interest not only me but many other visitors of this site.

Basically, I wanted to ask a "big-list type" Community Wiki question along those lines :

I am looking for blogs that focus on the mathematical theory of Statistics and Machine Learning, ideally at a research or advanced level.
The blog doesn't have to be solely about these topics but ideally most of the posts would be exposing the mathematical theory of an idea/concept/algorithm that is either directly or closely related to them. Here are two examples of what I'm looking for (Disclaimer : I have no affiliation with any of these people):

  • Gregory Gundersen's blog which neatly presents the theory of many well-known algorithms and results in Statistics, such as Conjugate Gradient Descent, Ordinary Least Squares, Hidden Markov Models... Some of the posts contain illustration with available source code
  • Francis Bach's Machine Learning Research blog which introduces some of his research topics and results in a more accessible way than reading his papers. There are many excellent in-depth writings about kernel methods, optimization algorithms for Machine Learning and general Statistical Learning Theory.

Please limit your answer to less than 2-3 links and provide a short description for each blog, as above.

Before posting this question, I had concerns about it possibly violating some guidelines related to spam, self-promotion, conflict of interest or something related. I couldn't figure out if were the case by reading the FAQ, so I wanted to ask about it on meta first.

The thing is, as I looked to see if similar questions had been asked before, I found these two similar questions : Which Machine Learning blog do you recommend ? and What Statistical blogs would you recommend ? which have been closed as off-topic, and the reason is not clear to me.

So I want to know : Why have these two questions been closed ? Would my question count as off-topic and be closed as well ? If so, why, and is there any way I can salvage it ?

Thanks for your time.


3 Answers 3


We have the where you can find many threads about book recommendations, I guess the questions about blogs could fall into this bucket as well. The question you linked was closed because of being opinion based and so does not fit the Q&A site format. This would be the case of questions like "what are the best/your favorite blogs about statistics", but I don't see any problem with asking for specific references.

  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for your answer. So, just to confirm : the question as written in my post would be fine on the main site ? $\endgroup$ Commented Sep 15, 2022 at 18:12
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @StratosFair yes, but probably best as community wiki. $\endgroup$
    – Tim
    Commented Sep 15, 2022 at 18:13
  • $\begingroup$ Perfect, thank you ! $\endgroup$ Commented Sep 15, 2022 at 18:44

These questions tend not to be a good fit for the site format. If one is not extremely careful, these tend to devolve into opinion polls, where the primary criterion for voting is what people consider to be a "good" blog. The typical fate of such questions is that they tend to not age well; over time, they become uncurated, out of date, and hard to salvage. Also, voting on these answers is heavily affected by which answers were posted first. I don't think the Stack Exchange format works well for recommendations that are based largely on opinion. You could always try asking in the site chat.

See also the help page https://stats.stackexchange.com/help/dont-ask, especially "your answer is provided along with the question, and you expect more answers". If you want to see some example policies from other sites around the Stack Exchange network, the following might be of interest to you: https://literature.meta.stackexchange.com/q/2, https://softwareengineering.meta.stackexchange.com/q/2665/34181.

As far as community wiki, you can find one perspective here (caveat: it might not 100% match the views of some here on this site): https://stackoverflow.blog/2011/08/19/the-future-of-community-wiki/


I am not entirely against the formation of a community wiki Q&A about relevant blogs for some topics.

However, one critical note: these things often tend to end up in long lists of answers that are not very well currated, not uniform, and difficult to browse through.

In addition, the voting system makes that answers will appear in an order that makes little sense (often it is just the oldest answers that end up with the most votes and get on top).

I would advise placing this on a real wiki. Possibly wikipedia or some other wiki could provide this service.

An option to make these type of q&a questions more dynamic and suitable here would be to have the questions that are tagged with being closed after some time. If somebody would have the same question as you 5 years later then they simply have to re-ask/duplicate the question. For these type of questions I would expect different answers when the time is 5 years later. But unlike wiki-type of websites the questions and answers don't evolve much on this website.

I believe there are some guidelines about questions that are time dependent (and I believe questions about references/blogs relate to it). Time-dependent questions are in general not regarded suitable for the q&a format, but I can not find a reference that explains this better.

  • $\begingroup$ Thank you for your valuable input. I agree that the time-dependency of the question does not make it a very good fit for the SE network in general for all the reasons you mentioned. I can see how the thread will either have to be regularly updated by newer contributions (skewing the upvote metric, as you mention) or will eventually "die" and have to be closed after some point. I am not sure what is the best way to deal with it for now, I guess we will see depending on how much attention the question gets. $\endgroup$ Commented Sep 19, 2022 at 11:41
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    $\begingroup$ It is this kind of post that would benefit from the Trending sort option, recently released at SO, being released more widely to SE. $\endgroup$ Commented Sep 21, 2022 at 12:28

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