Dispatches

Toward a Social Contract in Data Journalism

In the ongoing saga of American politics, we the voters have seen some pretty improbable things this election cycle. But to many, the starkest instance of the improbable has been Donald Trump’s rise to presumptive nominee for the GOP. But I won’t be talking about the situation in question – instead I want to discuss the state of data journalism in the wake of this campaign season.

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The Impact of Brazil's Crises on Science

Brazil spends about 1% of its GDP on research and development, an amount far below what other countries of similar means invest into science. The economic and political crises has made things even worse for science. Recently, the government proposed several cuts that directly affect the future of research in Brazil.

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The foreCite Index

Check out the foreCite Index, a new bibliometric indicator built from a rigorous framework of the statistics of citations.

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Come to Nicolás Peláez's Public Thesis Presentation on March 11th

Nicolás “Fly-Eye” Peláez clocks up another win for science.

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Peter Winter awarded PhD

Bystanders were left in awe.

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The Problem with Intuition

Today I want to talk about quantum entanglement. No, not the details but the idea of entanglement and how it, and other radical ideas like it, can challenge our intuition.

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No tienes...

Yesterday, the day before Thanksgiving break, was a really quiet morning. I could write about thanksgiving, something about the Spanish perspective, but we had a funny afternoon and I prefer to talk about it. We had lunch around noon and we talked about our annual “Trivia Tournament”. The rules are simple: each of us writes at least five questions; a “referee” mixes the questions into a single PowerPoint and hides the answers. During the tournament, the referee presents the questions and scores the players: one positive if the answer is correct, one negative if the answer is incorrect. There are three winners: who has the most positive points, the most negative points, and the most total points (positive plus negative points).

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A Loss in Geek Life: The Death of the Midnight Premiere

I draped my Hunger Games blanket across my shoulders and proudly strode to the movie theaters, anxious to get in line. Except, there was no line.

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Computer Models in History: Soviet Political Realism

Stepping into a slightly different pool than usual, let’s look at something from history: VRYAN (Russian acronym for Surprise Nuclear Missile Attack)

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Scientific Utopias: Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the h-index

tl;drThe h-index isn’t boiling a person down into a single number, we are. Also, people in power are the worst and will act as such even if they’re scientists

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Displacing the Classifieds

What is the most impactful invention of all time? Before some hipster’s smug intervention on behalf of the printing press, most millennials would nominate the internet. It’s difficult to argue that Google, Paypal, Amazon, Uber, Facebook, and Reddit haven’t profoundly altered our daily routines. While one-click ordering the one-hour delivery ...

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A Man Walks into a Bar: A Computational Scientist’s Nightmare

There’s the old joke: “A man walks into a bar. He says ‘ow’ “.

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The college scorecard

Health and education should be free. Or this is what most Europeans and a large group of Americans think. In an indirect attempt to decrease the currently rapidly increasing cost of college tuition, the US Department of Education has published a college scorecard in which the tuition cost, the salary after graduation, and the graduation rate are made available, among other information.

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Welcome to New York, it's been waiting for you

Everybody here wanted something moreSearching for a sound we hadn’t heard before And it saidWelcome to New York, It’s been waiting for you

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Follow me on the Reading Rainbow

Over the summer I’ve been able to successfully chisel away at my goal of reading 20 books by 16 different authors in 2015, with my two weeks of travel to and around Spain providing me ample time to dive into my iPad and digest. For this tour, I went back ...

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Collections

From a programmer’s perspective, taking care of memory and time are the most important issues. Computers have limited memory and accessing it has a computational cost. The first step I always do before I start programming is to think about the problem and the data structure. To define the data structure well, it is necessary to know what will be the way to access the data. For example, how to iterate over the elements, access an element or insert elements. Also, it is important to know the relationship between the elements: are they unique, do they aggregates, or is there an order?

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Grad School: Burnout begets burnout?

It is common knowledge that graduate teaching requirements are more often a bane than a benefit. It is easy to see why graduate students dread it. First of all, the responsibility of being a TA is usually tacked onto an already packed schedule as if it were as easy as ...

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Setting up a new development environment

Setting up your development environment on a new computer can be a pain. This guide will show you how you can take your existing environment and put them into an installer script.

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The inevitably(?) of fraud academia

The boat only has the power that it does because we all believe that it shouldn’t be rocked. And that has to, and can, change immediately.

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Upriver

Spain is a geographically heterogeneous country with large contrasts between regions. It has mountains that rise up to 3400 meters above the sea level in the Pyrenees and Granada, such as the Mulhacén that is the highest mountain in continental Spain. Teide, which is located in the Canary Island, is the highest mountain in all the country. Spain also has beautiful beaches in the Mediterranean sea, forests in the north and deserts in Andalucia and in some regions in the center.

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