Book review 2/2 on Robot Proof: Higher Education in the Age of AI

2019/08/02

(Part 1 is written elsewhere, I’ll add a link here to it later)

I finished the book by Joseph Aoun a little while ago, and I’ve been sitting on my notes letting them stir. I think i have a fairly safe conclusion for its second half. That said, I would expect those with an understanding and empathetic relationship with their CS students and their families will have been at the cusp of some similar conclusions drawn by Aoun in Robot Proof in 2017.

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Open Source Code for Light Stage Capture Sequences

Today I’m posting updates (1/n) to the Light Stage open source project codebase.

The updates mark improvements for integrating experimental result data and 3d geometry data with light and camera-trigger hardware controllers (3). Included are two new lighting sequence improvements (1) and (2) and a way to get started, no matter your stage design and target capture application (4). These changes contribute towards standardised capture sequences and integrated 3d reconstruction pipeline processing, while supporting stage design tools and retaining visualisations, measurable evaluations and optimisations at each step.

Altogether, this work takes a step towards the vision of a comprehensive open source framework for open hardware light stages, find more details at the Build a Light Stage website.

These recent updates to the LightStage-Repo on github include:

  1. Spherical gradient” lighting sequence.
  2. Balanced lighting baseline”.
  3. Local web service (on port 8080) to return data requested by an HTTP client, such as a hardware controller with Ethernet/Wifi module.
  4. Configuration file designed for each Light Stage, to easily get the web service responding with correct sequence data.
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Update on Lightstage Project

In this post, I took the liberty to write some of my thoughts and reflections on why Lightstages are (“pretty cool in my book” and also) relevant amongst today’s cutting edge developments in machine learning and data-driven decision making.

Over the last few years, I’ve had the opportunity to work as a researcher on the Aber Lightstage project, under Dr. Hannah Dee. Back then, I wrote a Python-OpenGL-based application to help us visualise and numerically evaluate lighting positions on our stage — the project is open source and on Github.  Dr. Dee had successfully raised a bit of funding to bring together a team of engineers, researchers and advisors, each offering their specialist skills and knowledge to the project, and I got the chance to get involved.

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Collaboration Platforms for Data Scientists

News from April 10th 2019 is the release of Google’s collaborative AI platform for Data Science teams, for execution on cloud or on premises. Google’s platform joins Alibaba‘s similar platform called PAI 2.0 announced in March 29th 2017. While comprehensive information on Alibaba’s platform is sparse in non-Chinese, the Google AI Platform does give samples and tutorials. Two others ClusterOne for the DevOps of data science and DeterminedAI for collaboration each had funding announcements earlier this year. Google and Alibaba’s platforms give a clear separation for team roles to collaborate at each stage of the process (as is indicated for the two yet-to-be-released others). The concept is well worth a mention because they are collaborative frameworks pushing forward the methodologies of data science, engineering and in essence, social intelligence..

 

cloud-ai-platform2
AI Platform announced by Google April 10th 2019: Process pipeline of data-driven application stages.

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Hallelujah Hotel Wifi Auto-logon!

C_FIPG2XgAEsaImI wrote a tool to auto-logon for Hotel Wifi Hotspot “splash” login pages. No more clicks/ disconnects for logins for overloaded custom wifi splash-screens.

… how it works:

On the console:
(1) loads wifi logon page (according to a profile you define)
(2) extracts input form and submit buttons from page
(3) injects username/password, submits form.
(4) d.o.n.e.

 

Check out the repo README.md for details and backstory..

Forks and pulls welcome: github.com/pmdscully/HHWAutoLogon

Building an IoT App for the Zombie Apocalypse

Ever thought what kind of app you would need to survive the Zombie Apocalypse? No, well neither had I until this semester’s session began and we needed a fun project for the final year students to work through in 8 hrs of lab time. This is what I came up with along with the support of the team at Aber Comp Sci.

SETTING SUMMARY – Infection is underway. We’re a few days into the epidemic. The cities are a mix of Continue reading “Building an IoT App for the Zombie Apocalypse”

Bio-Inspired Robotics Conference – SAB2016

On 26th August 2016 we drew to a close SAB2016, the 14th international conference of the series on bio-inspiration for robotics and algorithms from more or less any discipline at theory stages, to simulations and empirically applied. For me, nothing can take away my reverberating proudness I feel for just being a part of such a diverse, kind and like-minded collection of people with the sheer fascination for nature, paired with such talent and vision to pursue it for the betterment of society and life. I mean, isn’t that the dream?

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