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Rodolphe D'Inca
23,432 followers -
Reach the stars and bring them on Earth
Reach the stars and bring them on Earth

23,432 followers
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Rodolphe D'Inca's posts

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* How I stopped to worry about hardware *

I have already mentioned the RedPitaya, a kind of Raspberry Pi on steroids, with a double core, a FPGA and fast ADC/DAC to play in the MHz range.
I detail a bit more here why it is so interesting not only for educative purposes but also for practical applications, as a replacement for programmable logic controllers.


https://thezproject.wordpress.com/2016/10/04/fpgas-for-the-average-engineer/


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* The most difficult questions about space projects: Feasible or not ? *

I got many times this question in the last days: "As an ex space propulsion engineer, do you think that +SpaceX vision if feasible?".
My answer is: "I don't know".

Assessing the feasibility of concepts of space mission is difficult if you don't know how the concept will be executed. The organization, the tools count as much as the design which is, most of the time, classical. 

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* Searching a project partner: a taste of hell *

Some random and cathartic thoughts on the difficulties to find some motivated project partners. For a simple project.
I have even more respects for those who plan to build interplanetary spaceships.

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* The art of science communication *

My attention was attracted by this article: http://www.theatlantic.com/education/archive/2015/10/complex-academic-writing/412255/
about the necessity to simplify scientific articles.

I was wondering what types of communications the scientists exactly have to do in their work. I have tried to distinguish the different groups and their characteristics.
It seems to me that the most difficult task is the communication with the public, especially at a time where scientists are more easily exposed and that the public is less and less attracted by facts, data and rational discourse than by emotion and kitties.

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Augmented discussions

I have finished to write the prototype of a pluginfor JupyterLab: it is a chat! But in addition to text, you can write and run code as if you were in a Jupyter notebook. And the other participants to the chat can see your code and the output.

I had the idea at the lab where we are using Jupyter notebooks to process the data. And a clear missing tool was a way to communicate while working on our notebooks. I thought first to write a simple messaging plugin for Jupyter. But I realized that it would be even better if we could use Jupyter to discuss. So now, we can exchange words, algorithms and data!

The difference with a collaborative notebook is that each user has his own session and his own cells; so you can use the kernel and the language of your choice without disturbing the others.

This looks like an interesting beginning.
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Following the excellent article by +Massimo Pigliucci and the insightful post by +Sabine Hossenfelder on the role of philosophy in physics, I wanted to write my opinion, as a modest physicist, on the topic. I do not have the talent of both but I hope I can convey some elements of my message.
Short summary for trolling: yes philosophy is useful for physics.

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During Scipy2016, the Jupyter team announced the release in pre-alpha of the next generation notebook environment: JupyterLab. I had some time to use it in previous versions and here is my review of it. It is promising. 

I have proceeded with a major clean up of my circles. The purpose is to reduce the background noise. Since the are few tools to control it, I have decided to remove a big part of my circles and to focus on communities which are more topic-oriented. I try also to remove posts which give only links. Not that they are not interesting but Twitter is for this purpose me efficient since you have a dense layout and can browser the links faster.
So let's see if I can make G+ interesting again for me. There are plenty of bright people here; it would be a pity to lose them in the noise.

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My part 3 on the data processing platform for our plasma experiment. It is based on Jupyter and its narrative computing approach. I talk here about the return on experience we got after the first weeks of operation: pertinence of technical choices, usability and future improvements.
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