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University Apparatchik: We need these compliance boxes ticked before you can have the thing, because we have boxes, and boxes must be ticked.

Faculty member: If we tick your boxes, can we have the thing?

University Apparatchik: I can't promise that.

Your tax dollars at work.

Another tip: Every Mastodon account has RSS built in. Just add .rss to the end of the URL for your account, e.g.

That lets people follow your public posts from an RSS reader, but it's also useful if you wanted to use IFTTT to crosspost your public posts to another platform.

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Another major nit with Vizier 2.0 cleared. The table of contents artifact list now gives you per-artifact actions (e.g., scroll the workflow to the step that created the artifact). The issue tracker is still only at 41% completion, but it's actually more than usable at this point. I should set up a nightly build system.

Recent data exploration for work has also highlighted Vizier's main value proposition: Scala was pretty much the choice for building a ML pipeline, but I didn't think twice about tossing in a SQL cell for some ETL, or a Python cell for data vis in bokeh. It all just works seamlessly together.

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On a bit of a whim, I just added support for SparkML pipelines into Vizier's Scala cells (an easy 1-2 hr of effort). It ended up highlighting a lot of the value of building research software to existing standards for data science software. A few years back we completely rewrote Mimir ("todo notes" dataset annotations) for Spark Logical Plans. Now, without any extra effort or intent, Mimir annotations propagate through SparkML pipelines as well!

I just came off a 24 hour hackathon at the local university. (I came home to crash for a few hours in the middle of the night, but many of the students didn't!) They're always such energizing events, with students doing tons of really interesting things and just being jazzed to learn.

I gave a talk about #retrocomputing computer-building projects. Slides are here:

(There are many omissions, and probably errors, it's a pitch more than a howto!)

In the interest of keeping Pepper&Carrot free, I've decided to take on subtle product placement.

we're reaching cyberpunk anime levels of infowarfare

Q: Why can't you write a web tool in JavaScript for digitizing data?

A: Many people have an A/D blocker installed.

鈿狅笍 #Mastodon v3.4.6 is out! This patch release includes important security fixes.

And for those who are still on the 3.3.x branch, v3.3.2 is out with the same fixes.

A Hispine Beetle, maybe genus Dactylispa, spotted at Kranji Marshes, Singapore, on 14 Nov 2021. A tiny beetle, but on close up, looks intimidating with all those spines on its body.

On iNaturalist [ ]

#iNaturalist #Nature #Singapore #Photography #Insects #Beetles #Coleoptera

phosh 0.14.0 is out 馃殌 :

It adds launch splash for starting apps, has media player improvements and much more. Check the release notes ( for details.

#phosh #librem5 #purism #gnomeonmobile #gnome #linux

Saturday is just the best day of the week. In my opinion at least. 馃槑

So have another thing that I like, a #dragonfly! I followed its flight path for quite a while until I finally managed to get a shot in flight. Although they usually hover in the same spots, getting a sharp photo is a challenge.
But in this case I'm more than happy with the result.

#photography #EyesOnNature

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