About a year and a half ago I saw Jetpac’s video of their Spotter app and I remember thinking at the time that it would be so cool to get this flying on a drone. I didn’t have the bandwidth to work on it at the time but ended up poking at it with Markus Aschinger at the ASI and with two A level students (Jawad / Isaac) from the Nuffield Foundation. While they did good work and it got me a step closer, it still hadn’t quite come together. Hence I sat down the past week to do a full rewrite, integrate it with a quad I had lying around and do a little demo. The result can be seen in the video below.
A lot has changed since I last blogged about Taarifa. We have been the recipient of a World Bank Innovation Fund grant and are going through the Geeks Without Bounds Humanitarian Accelerator. Work is really kicking off in earnest now and if you follow the project you will see much happening over the next two months.
In order to improve the platform and grow the community we are running a number hackathons around the world. You are hereby cordially invited to come hack on data, software (front and back end), hardware, and all the bits between in
- Boston at MIT’s Little Devices on May 7th and 8th (bit.ly/taarifabos)
- London May 24th and 25th (bit.ly/taarifalondon)
- Dar es Salaam (bit.ly/taarifadar) May 31st and June 1st.
There’s not much in the way of access to clean water in Tanzania. In the informal settlements, there are a bunch of water points, but many of them are broken. Rather than a continual process of putting in new ones, the local water engineers want to fix the existing ones – but they don’t know where the broken points are. This also prevents large-scale response organizations from accurately deploying resources (and seeing what initiatives are already working).
Update: Unfortunately I purposely withdrew from the DL meetup after a very unprofessional experience with the co-organisers Persontyle. I Instead I joined forces with the London Machine Learning Meetup.
It has been almost half a year since I announced I would take over the London Big-O Algorithms meetup and bring it back to life. 5 Months later I am very happy to say all has gone extremely well, interest and attendance far exceeding my expectations. We have had a great set of meetups so far and all speaker slots are booked until June with talks from Google, The founder of ZeroMQ, Microsoft Bing, and many others. Really nice to see there is strong interest in good, solid, technical content.
However, enough about Big-O. This post is to announce a new meetup group that I have been convinced into setting up. The Deep Learning London meetup. The aim of this group is to bring together people interested in the family of machine learning methods that are concerned with learning distributed, hierarchical (“deep”) representations. Neural Networks being the most popular implementation. Its an area I have been looking at for a while and will be getting into quite deeply over the next couple of months (no pun intended). The format will be based around guest speakers sharing new research ideas and applications covering a wide range of fields from computer vision and natural language processing to autonomous systems and prognostics.
Note we are not assuming deep learning is the be-all end-all silver bullet of machine learning and welcome critical thoughts and benchmarks.
Sound interesting? Get in touch!
During the weekend of 6-7 December 2013, The University of Southampton will be one of the satellite cities as part of the global Random Hacks of Kindness Event!
See below for the problem statements. This time around Im particularly interested in any UAV related problems.
Twitter hashtag: #rhoksoton
We are proud and very grateful to be supported by Enterprise and Digital Economy at the University of Southampton, Microsoft Gadgeteer, Business Analyst Mentor, ScanToSecure, and ATASS.
I have always been a fan of autonomous flying machines, particular their civilian applications, and through my past work at the University I have been fortunate to be able to work on the design and building of UAVs. I have also been a keen attender of various meetups and hackathons .
I was therefore immediately sold when I heard about the Node Copter concept: getting together and see what you can make a Parrot AR Drone do by the end of the day using node.js. Best explained by video:
Both responded with a “hell yeah!” and after some prep Im happy to announce that you
can should sign up on the Eventbrite page:
The event will be held at the makerspace itself. There is a small attendance charge to avoid people signing up but not turning up.
Some prior coding experience (in whatever language) is required.
See you there!
During the weekend of 1-2 June 2013, The University of Southampton will be one of the satellite cities as part of the global Random Hacks of Kindness Event!
Twitter hashtag: #rhoksoton
- We are proud and very grateful to announce that Google is kind enough to help with sponsoring food and prizes. They Join Enterprise at the UoS, Microsoft Gadgeteer, and ATASS.
- We will have a couple of short talks during the event:
Update: a writeup of the event by Lorraine is here.
A shot post to say that I am co-organizing a Raspberry Pi workshop with The IET Solent Branch at the University of Southampton on 25 April. For personal reasons I cannot make it myself that day but do go along if you want to learn about how to use the GPIO pins on your Pi board!
Btw, if you can’t make it but live in the area, do checkout somakeit.org.uk. Recently launched and we now have a space!