Man, Woman, Dog: A Task from the Past

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Introduction

This article is a personal reflection more than some kind of tutorial or how-to article–which I have mostly written in the past. It describes solutions for an exercise that was given to students by  economics faculty who visited the computer science department. The task is relatively easy but somehow we couldn’t manage it at that time.
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Learn R: Hello World with R

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This article represents some of the basic concepts you need to understand in order to write a Hello world using the R programming language. Please feel free to comment/suggest if I missed one or more important points.

Following are the key points described later in this article:
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This article represents some of the basic concepts you…

Career Planning: Disaster Recovery

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One of the more important things that you have to remember is that you should always be ready for failure. As developers, we are used to thinking about stuff like that in our code, but this is true for real life as well.

I’m going to leave aside things like personal disasters for this post (things like car accidents, getting seriously sick, etc), because there are some ways to mitigate those…

PyWin32: How to Get an Application’s Version Number

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Occasionally you will need to know what version of software you are using. The normal way to find this information out is usually done by opening the program, going to its Help menu and clicking the About menu item. But this is a Python blog and we want to do it programmatically! To do that on a Windows machine, we need PyWin32. In this article, we’ll look at two different methods of getting…

The Top 5 Things You are Doing Today to Hinder Scalability

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At the CFSummit 2014, I presented on The Top 5 Things You are Doing Today to Hinder Scalability.

I collected my material through helping clients to scale their applications over a number of years. The important things in this presentation are listed in order. Decisions you make in your applications today, affect what options you have when you need to scale your application.

Certainly it is a…

Modeling Exercise: The Grocery Store’s Checkout Model

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I went to the super market yesterday, and I forgot to get out of work mode, so here is this post. The grocery store checkout model exercise deals with the following scenario. You have a customer that is scanning products in a self-checkout lane, and you need to process the order.

In terms of external environment, you have:

ProductScanned ( ProductId: string ) event
Complete Order…

Outcome bias and the psychology that prevents sustained success

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In psychology, there is a phenomenon called Outcome Bias, which basically means that we tend to judge the efficacy of a decision based primarily on how things turn out. After a decision is made, we rarely examine the conditions that existed at the time of the decision, choosing instead to evaluate performance based solely (or mostly) on whether the end result was positive or not.

But what…

Static code analysis for free

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Although JavaScript might be the world’s most misunderstood language, it is now among the most popular and most used ones. Thus you should also treat it as such. Meaning, to properly structure your frontend, apply code linters, automated testing… The available tools make that even easier than you might think.

You can’t control what you can’t measure Tom DeMarco
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Career Planning: Where do old devs go to?

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We are pretty much always looking for new people, what is holding us back from expanding even more rapidly is the time that it takes to get to grips with our codebases and what we do here. But that also means that we usually have at least one outstanding job offer available, because it takes a long time to fill it. But that isn’t the topic for this post.
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Removing Uncited References in a Tex File (with R)

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Last week, with @3wen, we were working a the revised version of our work on smoothing densities of spatial processes (with edge correction). Usually, once you have revised the paper, some references were added, others were dropped. But you need to spend some time to check that all references are actually mentioned in the paper. For instance, consider the following compiled tex file:
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Andrews Curves

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Andrews curves are a method for visualizing multidimensional data by mapping each observation onto a function. This function is defined as
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Andrews curves are a method for visualizing multidimensional data by mapping each observation onto a function. It has been shown the Andrews curves are able to preserve means, distance (up to a…

Experts vs Professionals

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Working with professionals can be a joy. Not only can they solve your problem, they may help you see what problem you should solve. I’ve had several instances lately when I hired a pro to do something I’d attempted myself. In each case I was very pleased and wondered why I hadn’t done this sooner. Offhand I can’t think of an example where I regretted hiring a professional.
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Sentiment Analysis Beyond Tweets

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Deep belief networks have made it possible to train computers to predict if a sentence is positive, negative or neutral. Most sentiment analysis captures headlines because tweets can be analysed. However are there business applications beyond social networking analytics?

Here are five examples:
1) Investment banking – reading complex reports
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7 reasons to use Yeoman’s angular-fullstack generator

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For my next project and, after looking for candidates and reading some hundreds of lines of documentation, I finally choose to work with the so called MEAN stack: mongodb, express, angular and node.
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For my next project and, after looking for candidates and reading some hundreds of lines of documentation, I finally choose to work with…

Partial Commits with Git

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Every once in a while I’m working on a feature, only to discover that I need to extend another part of the code first. If I was disciplined, I would create another branch at that point. But I’m not. I end up with both the extended utility class and the actual feature as pending changes. With git it is simple to make two separate commits while ensuring that every commit compiles.
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