[Reply by Nov 22] Aggregating PSL project updates, Oct 23 to Nov 22

  • Reporting period: Oct 23 to Nov 22, 2020
  • Reply by: Nov 22, 2020 (Sun)
  • Aggregated draft to be posted here by: Nov 23, 2020 (Mon)


This is a thread to aggregate project updates for the November NumFOCUS and PSL newsletters. Please reply with developments pertinent to the projects you have worked on during the reporting period. Please include URLs where applicable.

Items to consider:

  1. New releases or features
  2. General updates
    • Recent achievements you’re most proud of
    • What are you working on? What’s coming up? Where do you need help?
    • Upcoming events
    • Job openings

Feel free to contact me with questions. Thanks!


  • Peter Metz and Kyle Pomerleau created a Tax-Cruncher app that calculates a taxpayer’s liabilities under the Biden tax plan. Blog, app

  • Tax-Cruncher 0.6.0 features more intuitive inputs and minor modifications to the web application outputs. Link

  • Peter Metz presented Tax-Cruncher at the November 16 PSL Demo Day. Link

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Thanks Weifeng,

a couple of achievements for Tax-Calculator:

  • The new Tax-Cruncher-Biden app on Biden’s tax plan relies on Tax-Calculator. Blog, app
  • Studies from the American Enterprise Institute and the Hoover Institution use Tax-Calculator and other models to assess the Biden campaign’s tax plans. AEI paper, Hoover paper

and an announcement:

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A couple more updates:

  • PSL Models interview on the Global Village Podcast
  • New incubating project: OG-USA Calibration – contains scripts to read in data sources and estimate/calibrate parameters used in the OG-USA model.
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Below are the aggregated updates for NumFOCUS newsletter. The aggregated updates for PSL newsletter are in this pull request.

Please reply with corrections or edits by noon on Wednesday, 11/25/2020.


The Policy Simulation Library (PSL) is a collection of open-source models and software for public-policy decisionmaking.

Recent releases:

  • PCI-China, a machine learning algorithm that predicts China’s policy changes by mining its state-controlled media, released the 2020 Q3 update that sheds light on China’s post-COVID agenda.
  • PSL included a new incubating project, OG-USA-Calibration, for calibrating the OG-USA model that evaluates US fiscal policy.

General announcements:

  • PSL launched a “Demo Day” series and a blog that have showcased the Tax-Brain and Tax-Cruncher models. The next event will feature Cost-of-Capital-Calculator.
  • PSL made appearances at PyData Global 2020, where Max Ghenis talked about building an open source think tank using PSL tools and Hank Doupe demonstrated the ParamTools library.
  • Tax-Cruncher is used to create an app that calculates a taxpayer’s liabilities under the Biden tax plan. Check out the app and a blog post.

Thanks for putting this together. One suggestion on a wording change – perhaps use:

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Sorry for jumping in late here, but a couple other updates:

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Thanks for the bump @MaxGhenis. And thanks for putting this together @weifeng.zhong. Sorry for the delay!

  • Hank Doupe gave a talk on ParamTools at Pydata Global.
  • ParamTools 0.16.0 has an improved API for querying parameter values and better support for custom data types.
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Thanks for the feedback. The updates are now updated!