Thursday, July 24, 2014

OSCON Wednesday Recap

Ended up in Paul Frankwicks talk on "Build Your Own Exobrain" a bit late, but it worked out well. "Think of it as IFTTT, but free, open source, and you keep control of your privacy." Had a great conversation with Paul afterwards regarding stochastic time and mood tracking. Hopefully we'll get some stochastic triggers added to Exobrain, along with Python support, soon.

Next I listened to Adam Gibson give a talk on his deep learning library, DeepLearning4j. He's clearly a bright guy and is very passionate about his project. I'd previous watched him give a similar talk at the Hadoop Summit along with Josh Patterson. I spent some time talking with him after the session and trading machine learning stories. He nearly inspired me to learn Scala and start hacking on deeplearning4j - it sounds like a fabulous platform with all the possible moving pieces you could want for building a deep learning pipeline. 

Afterwards I went to Harrison Mebane's talk on spotting Caltrain cars using a Raspberry Pi outfitted with microphones and a camera. It looked like a neat project incorporating data, sensors and hardware.

Next, on a whim, I went to Tobias Zander's talk on web security. I know very little about security so I was fascinated by all of the interesting ways to compromise a system he showcased. He showed how clever hackers can learn all sorts of information in non-obvious ways. He also royally trolled the audience by using a Facebook compromise to gather people's Facebook profile pictures after they visited his website during the talk. 

Finally, I went to a lovely talk by Tim Bell on how CERN's IT infrastructure and how they went agile. It was a fascinating talk that dove into the complexities of such a massive system. The difficulties, both political, scientific and technological are enormous. When the video is posted it's well worth your time to go and watch.

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