I Am Not Charles


The Best Albums of 2010 (According to Schulze)

Posted in the Workshop by Joe on December 31, 2010
Tags: , ,

Over on my lovely wife’s music blog is a list of the Top Ten Albums of 2010, culled from nine separate end-of-year lists:

All Songs Considered (NPR)
MOJO
NME
Pitchfork
Q
Rolling Stone
Rough Trade
Stereogum
Spin

These lists actually have 25 to 100 entries on them, and they don’t all have the same entries or in the same order. The Rough Trade list doesn’t have a single one of our Top 10 in their top 10! (And our #3 song isn’t on their list at all!) So where’d we come up with these numbers?

Voting theory!

Treat each end-of-year list as a ballot in an election. In a standard election, several thousand or several million people all choose from a handful of candidates. Here we have just 9 ballots cast to choose between several hundred songs. So it’s the reverse of the elections that are commonly studied, but there’s no reason standard election tools wouldn’t work. And it’s an edge case that might reveal interesting properties of the methods used to count the votes.

I counted the votes using 10 separate methods (using vote-counting software – I’m not insane!) and then we picked the result that seemed to make the most sense. Not scientific at all, but nobody said this was a scientific study – it’s just for curiosity. We ended up choosing the results returned by the Schulze Method, the same method used by elections in a lot of open source software groups (including Debian and Gentoo).

Tomorrow I’ll explain how to turn a list into a ballot (and what that even means), and how to use pyvote to process the ballots. Then I’ll go through each of the 10 voting systems, describe them, and discuss the results. That’ll take a while… (A lot longer than it did to actually generate them!)

In the meantime, here’s the complete list, in order. All 261 of them.

1. Arcade Fire – The Suburbs
2. Beach House – Teen Dream
3. Kanye West – My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy
4. LCD Soundsystem – This is Happening
5. Deerhunter – Halcyon Digest
6. Vampire Weekend – Contra
7. The National – High Violet
8. Janelle Monae – The ArchAndroid
9. The Black Keys – Brothers
10. Yeasayer – Odd Blood
11. MGMT – Congratulations
12. Joanna Newsom – Have One On Me
13. Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti – Before Today
14. Big Boi – Sir Lucious Left Foot: The Son of Chico Dusty
15. Caribou – Swim
16. Best Coast – Crazy For You
17. Grinderman – Grinderman 2
18. Robyn – Body Talk Pt. 1
19. Crystal Castles – Crystal Castles
20. Gorillaz – Plastic Beach
21. Sleigh Bells – Treats
22. Flying Lotus – Cosmogramma
23. Gil Scott-Heron – I’m New Here
24. Avi Buffalo – Avi Buffalo
25. Robert Plant – Band of Joy
26. Sufjan Stevens – The Age of Adz
27. Kings of Leon – Come Around Sundown
28. M.I.A. – MAYA
29. Neil Young – Le Noise
30. Tame Impala – Innerspeaker
31. John Grant – Queen of Denmark
32. Laura Marling – I Speak Because I Can
33. Edwyn Collins – Losing Sleep
34. Matthew Dear – Black City
35. The Dead Weather – Sea of Cowards
36. The Roots – How I Got Over You
37. Titus Andronicus – The Monitor
38. Emeralds – Does it Look Like I’m Here?
39. Hot Chip – One Life Stand
40. Foals – Total Life Forever
41. These New Puritans – Hidden
42. Wild Nothing – Gemini
43. Broken Bells – Broken Bells
44. Liars – Sisterworld
45. Salem – King Night
46. Warpaint – The Fool
47. Glasser – Ring
48. Belle and Sebastian – Write About Love
49. Manic Street Preachers – Postcards From a Young Man
50. Surfer Blood – Astro Coast
51. Swans – My Father Will Guide Me Up a Rope To the Sky
52. Four Tet – There Is Love in You
53. Charlotte Gainsbourg – IRM
54. Drake – Thank Me Later
55. Field Music – Measure
56. Gold Panda – Lucky Shiner
57. Jamey Johnson – The Guitar Song
58. No Age – Everything in Between
59. Oneohtrix Point Never – Returnal
60. Paul Weller – Wake Up the Nation
61. Band of Horses – Infinite Arms
62. Crocodiles – Sleep Forever
63. Interpol – Interpol
64. Midlake – The Courage of Others
65. Perfume Genius – Learning
66. Phosphorescent – Here’s To Taking it Easy
67. Spoon – Transference
68. Superchunk – Majesty Shredding
69. The Coral – Butterfly House
70. The Morning Benders – Big Echo
71. The Walkmen – Lisbon
72. Das Racist – Shut Up, Dude / Sit Down, Man
73. Eminem – Recovery
74. The-Dream – Love King
75. Twin Shadow – Forget
76. The Tallest Man on Earth – The Wild Hunt
77. Cee Lo Green – The Lady Killer
78. Danger Mouse and Sparklehorse – Dark Night of the Soul
79. John Legend and The Roots – Wake Up!
80. Elton John and Leon Russell – The Union
81. Erykah Badu – New Amerykah, Pt. 2: Return of the Ankh
82. Mavis Staples – You Are Not Alone
83. Of Montreal – False Priest
85. Peter Gabriel – Scratch My Back
86. Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings – I Learned the Hard Way
87. Sharon Van Etten – Epic
88. The Gaslight Anthem – American Slang
89. Tom Jones – Praise and Blame
90. Villagers – Becoming a Jackal
91. Mount Kimbie – Crooks and Lovers
92. Teenage Fanclub – Shadows
93. Zola Jesus – Stridulum II
94. Abe Vigoda – Crush
95. Broken Social Scene – Forgiveness Rock Record
96. Delorean – Subiza
97. Dum Dum Girls – I Will Be
98. Frightened Rabbit – The Winter of Mixed Drinks
99. Gayngs – Relayted
100. Gonjasufi – A Sufi and a Killer
101. jj – jj no 3
102. Jonsi – Go
103. Klaxons – Surfing the Void
104. Male Bonding – Nothing Hurts
105. Marina and the Diamonds – The Family Jewels
106. My Chemical Romance – Danger Days
107. Mystery Jets – Serotonin
108. Rick Ross – Teflon Don
109. Tamaryn – The Waves
110. The Drums – The Drums
111. Man Alive – Everything Everything
112. Steve Mason – Boys Outside
113. Wavves – King of the Beach
114. Black Angels – Phosphene Dream
115. Antony and the Johnsons – Swanlights
116. Caitlin Rose – Own Side Now
117. Darkstar – North
118. Doug Paisley – Constant Companion
119. James Blake – The Bells Sketch
120. How to Dress Well – Love Remains
121. Girls – Broken Dreams Club
122. John Mellencamp – No Better Than This
123. Kid Cudi – Man on the Moon II: The Legend of Mr. Rager
124. Big K.R.I.T. – K.R.I.T. Wuz Here
125. Marnie Stern – Marnie Stern
126. Ceo – White Magic
127. Avey Tare – Down There
128. Lower Dens – Twin Hand Movement
129. Frank (Just Frank) – The Brutal Wave
130. Baths – Cerulean
131. Mumford and Sons – Sigh No More
132. Local Natives – Gorilla Manor
133. Plan B – The Defamation of Strickland Banks
134. Ray LaMontagne and the Pariah Dogs – God Willin’ and the Creek Don’t Rise
135. New Pornographers – Together
136. Massive Attack – Heligoland
137. Josh Ritter – So Runs the World Away
139. Roots Manuva meets Wrongtom – Duppy Writer
140. Rumer – Seasons of My Soul
141. Isobel Campbell and Mark Lanegan – Hawk
142. Sam Amidon – I See the Sign
143. She and Him – Volume II
144. Bruce Springsteen – The Promise
145. Small Black – New Chain
146. Take That – Progress
147. Corinne Bailey Rae – The Sea
148. Bryan Ferry – Olympia
149. Brandon Flowers – Flamingo
150. Taylor Swift – Speak Now
151. Kid Rock – Born Free
152. Elizabeth Cook – Welder
153. Maximum Balloon – Maximum Balloon
154. Peter Wolf – Midnight Souvenirs
155. Ted Leo and the Pharmacists – The Brutalist Bricks
156. Against Me! – White Crosses
157. The Chemical Brothers – Further
158. The Fall – Your Future, Our Clutter
159. Factory Floor – Untitled
160. Les Savy Fav – Root for Ruin
161. New Young Pony Club – The Optimist
162. Islet – Wimmy
163. Hurts – Happiness
164. Lonelady – Nerve Up
165. Magnetic Man – Magnetic Man
166. Pulled Apart By Horses – Pulled Apart By Horses
167. Kelis – Flesh Tone
168. First Aid Kit – The Big Black and the Blue
169. Ikonika – Contact, Love, Want, Have
170. Errors – Come Down With Me
171. The Fresh and Onlys – Play It Strange
172. The Jim Jones Revue – Burning Your House Down
173. The White Stripes – Under Great White Northern Lights
174. Drive-By Truckers – The Big To-Do
175. Carolina Chocolate Drops – Genuine Negro Jig
176. Laura Veirs – July Flame
177. Dr. Dog – Shame Shame
178. Bob Dylan – The Witmark Demos
179. Gogol Bordello – Trans-Continental Hustle
180. Tramples By Turtles – Palomino
181. Johnny Cash – American VI: Ain’t No Grave
182. The Hold Steady – Heaven Is Whenever
183. Black Rebel Motorcycle Club – Beat the Devil’s Tattoo
184. Freelance Whales – Weathervanes
185. Los Lobos – Tin Can Trust
186. Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers – Mojo
187. Elvis Costello – National Ransom
188. Richard Thompson – Dream Attic
189. Ra Ra Riot – The Orchard
190. Justin Townes Earle – Harlem River Blues
191. Blitzen Trapper – Destroyer of the Void
192. Trent Reznor And Atticus Ross – The Social Network Soundtrack
193. Goldfrapp – Head First
194. Jakob Dylan – Women and Country
195. Ben Folds and Nick Hornby – Lonely Avenue
196. Jimi Hendrix – Valleys of Neptune
197. Leonard Cohen – Songs From the Road
198. OK Go – Of the Blue Colour of the Sky
199. The Books – The Way Out
200. Junip – Field
201. Deer Tick – Black Dirt Sessions
202. Sade – Soldier of Love
203. Tricky – Mixed Race
204. I Am Kloot – Sky at Night
205. Skream – Outside the Box
206. Cherry Ghost – Beneath This Burning Shoreline
207. Two Door Cinema Club – Tourist History
208. Voice of the Seven Thunders – Voice of the Seven Thunders
209. Brian Eno – Small Craft on a Milk Sea
210. Dylan LeBlanc – Paupers Field
211. Konono No 1 – Assume Crash Position
212. Smoke Fairies – Through Low Light and Trees
213. PVT – Church With No Magic
214. The Soft Pack – The Soft Pack
215. O Children – O Children
216. Holly Miranda – The Magician’s Private Library
217. Sea of Bees – Songs For the Ravens
218. Pantha Du Prince – Black Noise
220. Cours Lapin – Cours Lapin
221. Darwin Deez – Darwin Deez
222. School of Seven Bells – Disconnect From Desire
223. Beach Fossils – Beach Fossils
224. Shit Robot – From the Cradle to the Rave
225. Chilly Gonzales – Ivory Tower
226. Connan Mokasin – Please Turn Me Into the Snat
227. Holy Fuck – Latin
228. The School – Loveless Unbeliever
229. Tobacco – Maniac Meat
230. Dios – We Are Dios
231. Allo Darlin’ – Allo Darlin’
232. El Guincho – Pop Negro
233. Kort (Kurt Wagner and Cortney Tidwell) – Invariable Heartache
234. Solar Bears – She Was Coloured In
235. Free Energy – Stuck on Nothing
236. Kings Go Forth – The Outsiders Are Back
237. Dan Michaelson and the Coastguards – Shakes
238. Stornoway – Beachcomber’s Windowsill
239. Magic Kids – Memphis
240. Fool’s Gold – Fool’s Gold
241. Frankie Rose and the Outs – Frankie Rose and the Outs
242. Aloe Blacc – Good Things
243. Drums of Death – Generation Hexed
244. Am – Future Sons and Daughters
245. Time and Space Machine – Set Phazer to Stun
246. Walls – Walls
247. The Dillinger Escape Plan – Option Paralysis
248. Happy Birthday – Happy Birthday
249. The Eighties Matchbox B-Line Disaster – Blood and Fire
250. Woods – At Echo Lake
251. Tyler, The Creator – Bastard
252. Kylesa – Spiral Shadow
253. Women – Public Strain
254. Forest Swords – Dagger Paths
255. Wyatt, Atzmon, Stephens – For the Ghosts Within
256. Eli Paperboy Reed – Come and Get It
257. Kelley Soltz – To Dreamers
258. The Besnard Lakes – Are the Roaring Night
259. Roky Erickson with Okkervil River – True Love Cast Out All Evil
260. Jane Weaver and Septieme Souer – The Fallen By Watch Bird
261. Ali Farka Toure and Toumani Diabate – Ali and Toumani

5 Responses to 'The Best Albums of 2010 (According to Schulze)'

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  1. [...] (For more info on how the results of everyone else’s best albums of 2010 list was obtained, as well as a whole lots of other technical geekery please refer to I Am Not Charles.) [...]

  2. Clay Shentrup said,

    Approval Voting plausibly elects Condodcet winners more often than real Condorcet methods.
    ScoreVoting.net/AppCW.html

    It is mathematically proven that the Condorcet winner is not necessarily the actual “right, winner”.
    http://www.electology.org/majority- Approval Voting plausibly elects Condodcet winners more often than real Condorcet methods.
    ScoreVoting.net/AppCW.html

    It is mathematically proven that the Condorcet winner is not necessarily the actual “right, winner”.
    http://www.electology.org/majority-myth

    These Bayesian regret figurss show the marked superiority of Score Voting and Approval Voting.
    ScoreVoting.net/BayRegsFig.html

    • Joe said,

      “Approval Voting plausibly elects Condodcet winners more often than real Condorcet methods.”

      That’s not possible. If a method doesn’t elect a Condorcet winner 100% of the time, it’s not a Condorcet method, by definition. And it’s clearly not possible for Approval voting to elect a Condorcet winner more than 100% of the time.

      “Nearly as often as”, or “As often as for voting patterns that show up in real elections,” I’ll buy. (And its what your site actually says.) But MORE often than? You’re crazy.


      • Condorcet methods only elect Condorcet winners IF voters are sincere. Maybe for your purposes, that’s a non-issue.

        In any case, there’s nothing special about the “Condorcet winner”. Most people, including myself, naively presume that the Condorcet winner must logically be the “right” winner, or “best” candidate, in the eyes of the voters. That view is logically disproved at the link I posted.

        The actual “right” winner is the candidate who maximizes social utility. Social utility efficiency for a voting method is quantified as Bayesian regret. See the chart I linked you to, which shows that Score Voting (aka Range Voting) and Approval Voting outperform Condorcet (in that case, it’s the Least Reversal method I believe).

  3. Brad Beattie said,

    Hey Joe, I took at look at pyvote to see what methods they had, but didn’t see the Schulze Method in there.

    My Python library, https://github.com/bradbeattie/Election-Web-Service, has the Schulze Method (which picks one winner) along with Schulze Proportional Representation (which produces an ordered list of winners). That type of result might be more in line with what you’re trying to do (produce a top 10 list).


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