Jacob J. Walker's Blog

Scholarly Thoughts, Research, and Journalism for Informal Peer Review

Archive for November, 2015

An Update about the evolution of the

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I wanted to give everyone an update about what originally was going to just be a study group about Information Theory, but has expanded into being a full high school course on the Logic, Algebra, and Statistics of Computer and Data Science.

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Written by Jacob Walker

November 30th, 2015 at 11:59 am

Introduction to Boolean Algebra & Information Theory: A Twelve Week Course

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As I’ve been posting about, I’ve been working to learn more about information theory, to bridge my way to learning Bayesian analysis techniques along with other machine learning techniques.   While at first I was only considering having a self-study group, I have come to believe that the first portion of this learning could be at a high school level (albeit advanced).  So I am now planning on offering these topics as a class, where we will meet once a week, in the evening, probably on Thursdays at around 5:30.   I have created a Moodle class that will have all the topics (you can log in as a guest to get in for right now).  This class will be free, although if you are not an HCCS student (and if you have a high school diploma already, you really can’t be an HCCS student), then there won’t be any credit you earn.  Although, if we do what I plan, and continue on to more rigorous work, we would have the potential for credit through LearningCounts.

Written by Jacob Walker

November 20th, 2015 at 11:59 am

Posted in Data Science

Proposed “Syllabus” for Module 1 (High School Rigor) of the Information Theory Self-Study Group

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As I posted recently, there is a self-study group starting about learning Information Theory, that will ultimately parallel Oberlin’s Math 345 course, and thus be something we could earn upper division college credit through LearningCounts.  But, I believe in learning starting from easy and conceptual to moving to more challenging and technical.  Thus, the first third of the “course”, which I’m calling “Module 1”, is going to be at what the author of our main text deems to be at a high school level of math rigor.  And we will mostly watch videos that are also geared towards high school students and/or the general public.

So I’m proposing for this study group the following sequence, with approximate dates of when we would complete different portions of our reading, and activities.

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Written by Jacob Walker

November 19th, 2015 at 9:10 am

Posted in Data Science

Calling all Fellow Math Nerds: Let’s Learn Information Theory Together

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I believe I finally have done enough research about statistical forms of regression, to see that the methods I will need to use in my doctoral research will require Bayesian methods and/or knowledge from Information Theory.  So I am starting to dive into these, starting with Information Theory, and I want to see if any of my friends are interested in having a study group to learn this together.  I believe if we do it with sufficient rigor, we can earn upper division math credit through LearningCounts; so this could be of value both personally and professionally.

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Written by Jacob Walker

November 17th, 2015 at 11:59 am

Posted in Data Science

I am saddened by the Killings in Paris from ISIS AND the Killings in the U.S. from ourselves

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Yesterday there was mass murder in Paris, as I am sure most of you know.  There was also at least one murder in Sacramento, as it happened a little over a block away from where I was at school.   Although it is in some news sources, the murder of the Grant football player hasn’t had nearly as much coverage.  And if it was just one death in our country by gangs and guns, while I’d still be sad, I would not be as outraged.  But it isn’t.

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Written by Jacob Walker

November 14th, 2015 at 11:59 am

Posted in Political Science

Non-Linear “Regression” using a Pattern Recognition Algorithm combined with Monte Carlo Simulations

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For a bit of time, I have been trying to find a single standardized method of data mining to test any set of data across various curves of best fits with various underlying error distributions.  (As I have realized my idea of removing “outliers” isn’t really solving the problem, because they are often there for a “reason”) Yesterday, I had a “crazy” idea that might just be able to solve this…

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Written by Jacob Walker

November 13th, 2015 at 11:59 am

Posted in Data Science

Why I am choosing to use SageMathCloud as the platform for my Doctoral Research

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sage_iconIn the very first draft of my doctoral research proposal, I planned on using Excel to do the data mining involved in my research.  But, it quickly became apparent that Excel would be a poor tool for such a job, because it is inefficient for such tasks,  does not scale well, is not multi-user, and can become unstable with large data sets. So I started to look at what might be a good alternative, and SageMathCloud seems to be the nearly perfect answer.

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Written by Jacob Walker

November 1st, 2015 at 11:59 am