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-   -   Assistance requested for "mature" learner (http://book.caltech.edu/bookforum/showthread.php?t=307)

avatarmh 04-10-2012 01:43 PM

Assistance requested for "mature" learner
 
Hi,

Part of my motivation in taking this course is to relearn coding to render tangible and useful my conceptual and mathematical understanding of some of the ML methods.

Unfortunately, it's been a while (decades) since I've done any coding to speak of (although I have found proven to myself that any procedural or declarative aspect of coding are still deeply embedded in my thinking, e.g., I have successfully coded some trivial stuff in Java recently). What I am certain I will have problems with is: I/O especially reading off of the web or data bases, i.e., anything but flat files.

Might anyone recommend to me:
1. Platforms (that are either free or fairly inexpensive)
2. Preferred languages (that are either free or fairly inexpensive)
3. Websites where I might find some code fragments to get me going and build off of.
4. Websites with examples and data.
5. What everyone else is doing that is considered optimal or near-optimal.

Anyone who is willing to take a more tutorial/collaborate interest in the request would be greatly appreciated. I would be happy to explore things I might offer you in return.

Thanks,

Avatar

tcristo 04-10-2012 02:14 PM

Re: Assistance requested for "mature" learner
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by avatarmh (Post 1126)
Hi,

Part of my motivation in taking this course is to relearn coding to render tangible and useful my conceptual and mathematical understanding of some of the ML methods.

Unfortunately, it's been a while (decades) since I've done any coding to speak of (although I have found proven to myself that any procedural or declarative aspect of coding are still deeply embedded in my thinking, e.g., I have successfully coded some trivial stuff in Java recently). What I am certain I will have problems with is: I/O especially reading off of the web or data bases, i.e., anything but flat files.

Might anyone recommend to me:
1. Platforms (that are either free or fairly inexpensive)
2. Preferred languages (that are either free or fairly inexpensive)
3. Websites where I might find some code fragments to get me going and build off of.
4. Websites with examples and data.
5. What everyone else is doing that is considered optimal or near-optimal.

Anyone who is willing to take a more tutorial/collaborate interest in the request would be greatly appreciated. I would be happy to explore things I might offer you in return.

Thanks,

Avatar

I suspect a lot of answers you get will be directly related to the domain you are interested in. Are you looking for the easiest way to code up and test some of your ideas (or support the homework in this class) or are you more interested in developing something for use in a production environment that has some time based constraints?

I personally use whatever language and platform makes the most sense at the time and within the constraints given. I personally wouldn't use Excel\VBA to code up a client\server based credit determination system for a large bank. However, for a small community bank that has a single loan officer, I very well may do exactly that.

Tell us a little more about your interests and what you want to accomplish and I am sure you will get some valid input.

BTW: Almost every programming language has greatly simplified the task of performing I\O nowadays. I can read and parse diverse file types such as CVS and XML files using classes that are provided as a part of the compilers. If you can understand the theory of ML and code the theory into your own program, I seriously doubt you will have any problem loading the data to test and train it.

v_oneill 04-10-2012 05:03 PM

Re: Assistance requested for "mature" learner
 
I'm in the same boat, though have never done much programming outside SQL and SAS. R and Python are both free options and I readily found code online to implement a perceptron for both.

avatarmh 04-10-2012 07:23 PM

Re: Assistance requested for "mature" learner
 
Hi Same Boat,

I've never programmed in either Python or R, but I'd be game. Any chance you might share the URL?

Thanks.

Avatar

v_oneill 04-11-2012 12:45 AM

Re: Assistance requested for "mature" learner
 
Sure thing:

Python code

R

Can't necessarily be much help in using either, still slogging through what the different pieces do.

avatarmh 04-12-2012 02:33 AM

Re: Assistance requested for "mature" learner
 
Thanks so much. I found some too, but this is much more useful with the visualization capabilities (I think). Unfortunately, real job has been calling and I'm off for the week to a conference. Hopefully I find time to catch up. If I make headway, I'll let you know.

Avatar

miguel.penalver@mail.com 07-18-2012 10:39 AM

Re: Assistance requested for "mature" learner
 
For mathematical/scientific computational tasks array-oriented high level languages are the most efficient, both in terms of development and execution time. Here you can find an extensive list: http://www.bioinformatics.pe.kr/sal/A/2/index.shtml.

Examples: MATLAB (http://www.mathworks.it/products/matlab/) and IDL (http://www.exelisvis.com/ProductsServices/IDL.aspx) as commercial products, and Octave (http://www.gnu.org/software/octave/) as open source.


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