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Cheng Soon Ong
Curious. Machine learning for Scientific Discovery. I choose open science.
Curious. Machine learning for Scientific Discovery. I choose open science.

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Give the Earth a present: help us save climate data

We've been busy backing up climate data before Trump becomes President. Now you can help too, with some money to pay for servers and storage space.   Please give what you can at our Kickstarter campaign here:

If we get $5000 by the end of January, we can save this data until we convince bigger organizations to take over.   If we don't get that much, we get nothing.  That's how Kickstarter works.   Also, if you donate now, you won't be billed until January 31st.

So, please help!   It's urgent.

I will make public how we spend this money.  And if we get more than $5000, I'll make sure it's put to good use.  There's a lot of work we could do to make sure the data is authenticated, made easily accessible, and so on.

The idea

The safety of US government climate data is at risk. Trump plans to have climate change deniers running every agency concerned with climate change.  So, scientists are rushing to back up the many climate databases held by US government agencies before he takes office.

We hope he won't be rash enough to delete these precious records. But: better safe than sorry!

The Azimuth Climate Data Backup Project is part of this effort. So far our volunteers have backed up nearly 1 terabyte of climate data from NASA and other agencies. We'll do a lot more!  We just need some funds to pay for storage space and a server until larger institutions take over this task.

The team

+Jan Galkowski is a statistician with a strong interest in climate science. He works at Akamai Technologies, a company responsible for serving at least 15% of all web traffic. He began downloading climate data on the 11th of December.

• Shortly thereafter +John Baez, a mathematician and science blogger at U. C. Riverside, joined in to publicize the project. He’d already founded an organization called the Azimuth Project, which helps scientists and engineers cooperate on environmental issues.

• When Jan started running out of storage space, +Scott Maxwell  jumped in. He used to work for NASA — driving a Mars rover among other things — and now he works for Google. He set up a 10-terabyte account on Google Drive and started backing up data himself.

• A couple of days later +Sakari Maaranen joined the team. He’s a systems architect at Ubisecure, a Finnish firm, with access to a high-bandwidth connection. He set up a server, he's downloading lots of data, he showed us how to authenticate it with SHA-256 hashes, and he's managing many other technical aspects of this project.

There are other people involved too.  You can watch the nitty-gritty details of our progress here:

Azimuth Backup Project - Issue Tracker:

and you can learn more here:

Azimuth Climate Data Backup Project.


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Like Bregman divergence? We stretched the set of functions that can be used as generators (traditionally convex) #nips2016

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Caroline Series is the chair of the committee for the Chern Medal, a fairly new prize for lifetime achievement in mathematics. She is looking for nominations. From my experience on such committees, it is hugely helpful to have a wide selection of good nominations, and on a small committee it is easy to overlook people who would have made excellent candidates. So if you have a good idea, do take the time to act on it.

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Version 5.0.0 of the shogun machine learning toolbox has been released with unified examples across all supported languages and various python notebooks .

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The Royal Society is opening up its entire journal archive. What's the catch? It's doing so only until November 6th. So if you're burning to look something up, now you can. But if you just feel like a browse on November 7th, then that won't be possible. Is it ungrateful of me that my immediate reaction to initiatives like this is to feel that it is deeply wrong that they are "initiatives" rather than simply being the norm?

On a related topic, yesterday I heard an amazing performance of The Rite of Spring, arranged for organ duet -- that is, one organ and two organists. Again there is a catch, which is that the concert was illegal: Stravinsky's publishers, Boosey and Hawkes, do not allow the piece to be performed except in one of Stravinsky's two arrangements -- the one for orchestra and the one for piano duet. Stravinsky died 45 years ago in a very different era -- it feels very wrong that his publishers should have that kind of say over what can be done with his music.

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Very excited about taking on a new role as a director of AI research at Apple in addition to my work at CMU as an associate professor in the Machine Learning Department. Lots of truly amazing AI and Machine Learning projects are taking place all over Apple and I am thrilled to be part of it.

We will be building a team of top-notch Machine Learning and Deep Learning researchers, working on challenging R&D projects as well as conducting fundamental research to advance the state-of-the-art in AI! We are looking for both full-time research scientists as well as postdoctoral fellows to join my team. Apply or ping me if you are interested.*USA&pN=0&openJobId=52662972

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Software Engineering jobs at HIVERY -- Help us develop data-driven systems that optimise, and intuitive UX that users love

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If you're a scientist who cares about open access and are looking for somewhere to publish, then Royal Society Open Science might be worth considering. For the moment there are no author charges and articles are free to read. The journal covers mathematics as well, and I am told that there are no plans for author charges in the foreseeable future, and that in mathematics there may never be charges. I personally find this quite helpful, as these days I have trouble finding journals that I don't feel awkward about submitting to.

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The Australian National University is making available up to five PhD scholarships for research in the area of robotic vision. The research will be done in conjunction with the Australian Centre for Robotic Vision. See details in the link below.

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This seems to be a fake conference.
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