Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Day in the life of a Data Scientist

A great read from the Decomposition blog about the day in the life of a Data Scientist.  I consider myself a Data Scientist by any other name.  The blog article by Sean does a great job of breaking down the essence of making better decisions for the organization you may be involved.

I've always thought asking good questions is the start of good analysis.  The organizations basically doesn't know what it doesn't know.  A good Data Scientist will be a like a sleuth looking for clues.  In all honesty that may be the most fun about being a Data Scientist.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

OpenOpt Suite release 0.42

Hi all,

I'm glad to inform you about new OpenOpt Suite release 0.42 (2012-Sept-15), fa free Python-written cross-platform software with primal focus on numerical optimization. Main changes:

*    Some improvements for solver interalg, including handling of categorical variables
*    Some parameters for solver gsubg
*    Speedup objective function for de and pswarm on FuncDesigner models
*    New global (GLP) solver: asa (adaptive simulated annealing)
*    Some new classes for network problems: TSP (traveling salesman problem), STAB (maximum graph stable set)], MCP (maximum clique problem)
*    Improvements for FD XOR (and now it can handle many inputs)
*    Solver de has parameter "seed", also, now it works with PyPy
*    Function sign now is available in FuncDesigner
*    FuncDesigner interval analysis (and thus solver interalg) now can handle non-monotone splines of 1st order
*    FuncDesigner now can handle parameter fixedVars as Python dict
*    Now scipy InterpolatedUnivariateSpline is used in FuncDesigner interpolator() instead of UnivariateSpline. This creates backward incompatibility - you cannot pass smoothing parameter (s) to interpolator no longer.
*    SpaceFuncs: add Point weight, Disk, Ball and method contains(), bugfix for importing Sphere, some new examples
*    Some improvements (essential speedup, new parameter interpolate for P()) for our (currently commercial) FuncDesigner Stochastic Programming addon
*    Some bugfixes

In our website ( http://openopt.org ) you could vote for most required OpenOpt Suite development direction(s) (poll has been renewed, previous results are here).

Regards, D.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Upgrade your skill sets with free courses

We are in the midst of the Insight Age.  We have moved beyond capturing data and are now processing information.  Properly processing the large amounts of data requires knowlege and skill sets.  Fortunately there are many ways to develop those skills.

Class Central is a website that provides a complete list of free online courses from some of the most established and prestigious universities in the world.  Websites like these are helping to make the world smaller by providing free and accessible learning resources.

I am a big fan of open courseware.  There are plenty of other places to look for open coureses.  The Open Courseware Consortium is a useful resource.  A good metasearch site like OpenCourseWare Finder is valuable as well.