There is still another month of chill to get through, but signs of spring are now all around our house in Canberra! Top row: magnolia tree and almond tree; bottom row: liquidambar tree. The birds are starting to come back too. (Photos taken on 27 August 2016.)
Everything that is old is new again. That’s the feeling I get when I look at Spark, which I learned is one of the fastest growing Apache projects in the big data space. There is remarkable similarity in the underlying architecture between Spark and that of a Massively Parallel Processing (MPP) Database like Greenplum or… More Apache Spark vs MPP Databases
Like many AI researchers, I watched wide-eyed when IBM’s Watson beat human world champions at the difficult game of Jeopardy in 2011. It was a watershed event in AI history and it certainly provided a much-needed boost to knowledge-representation-based approaches to AI, against a backdrop of 20 years of superior advances in statistical approaches to AI.… More IBM Watson: Fake It till You Make It?
The Kalman Filter is one of the more useful tools in data science, but while there are a lot of well-written descriptions of the Bayesian tracking technique available online and in technical books/articles, for some reason it’s hard to find a simple derivation of the Kalman Filter from first principles. In this short note, I show how… More A Derivation of the Kalman Filter
The NSW and ACT governments have just announced a ban of greyhound racing starting in 2017 following a Four Corners investigation into animal cruelty in the industry. Taking a long-term view, there can be no doubt that this is a good decision. However, to make sure the decision doesn’t turn into a disaster in the short-term, we… More Life with a Greyhound
Who would have thought a garbage bin can look so interesting? Ice on bin, 16 June 2016, Arndell.
I have never warmed up to the use of “black swan” to signify an improbable but impactful event. The very first swan I saw was a resident at the Australian National University. It was naturally a black swan. For years I saw only black swans — there are many of them living all around Canberra. I saw… More Black Swans, White Swans