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, supported by Persontyle. 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!
I’m happy to announce that Random Hacks of Kindness will be coming to Southampton for the 4th time! Again with help from Alejandro Saucedo and HackaSoton.
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:
I got in touch with Benjie (from So Make It) and Andy Nesbitt (who has run a number of these) asking them if they were interested in helping organize one in Southampton.
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!
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!
For some reason I never did any podcast listening until about 10 months ago. At that point I decided to give it a go and quickly assembled an initial list of subscriptions by googling around to see what similar minded peers were listening to. Its amazing (and frustrating) how much interesting stuff is out there.
My current list has evolved considerably since then and the purpose of this post is to give an overview of the shows I’m currently subscribed to and why. Hopefully it may inspire others to listen to some of them and share their own.
The different subscriptions cover my interests in technology & software, programming, (aerospace) engineering, and socio-economic/political topics. As well as a broader interest in science related topics and the scientific method.
Its 8:44 am and after 5 hours of sleep on my trusty Thermarest I feel quite refreshed, which is more than I can say about the people around me. Some have capitulated and lay scattered around the brightly lit room under their coats in front of their MacBook Air’s. Others are still in exactly the same position I left them 5 hours ago but the intensity has gone and eyes have glazed over. At least one person confirmed the geek stereotype and didn’t manage to hold his beer.
Update: Apparently Parlycloud won a special mention during the judging, thanks!
A couple of months ago I blogged about my first venture into clojure. This was driven by the desire to learn something completely different to what I was already familiar with.
Real life got in the way and for a while my dabbling in clojure was put on hold though I continued to lurk on the london-clojurians list. It then so happned there was a Dojo on Monday (yesterday) which I could (finally) make. Travelling between Southampton and London is never cheap through but I tend to see it as an investment.
After the great success and feedback of the previous global RHoK event in Southampton I decided to organize the next one as well. This time around kindly helped out by Alejandro Saucedo from HackaSoton.
During the weekend of 1-2 December 2012, The University of Southampton will be one of the satellite cities as part of the global Random Hacks of Kindness Event!
Like in June it looks like we will be the only UK event so let that be an extra motivation!
Click here for the detailed programme
Twitter hashtag: #rhoksoton
Last August every programmers’ faviorite site, StackExchange, announced a machine learning contest on Kaggle. The task was defined as:
…to find an algorithm that predicts whether (and for what reason) a question will be closed. The idea is simple: we’ve prepared a dataset with all the questions on Stack Overflow, including everything we knew about them right before they were posted, and whether they finally ended up closed or not. You grab the data, build your brilliant classifier, run it against some leaderboard data and submit your results. Rinse and repeat until the contest ends, when we’ll grab the most promising classifiers and run them against fresh data to choose winners.