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Tuesday, January 28, 2020

The importance of studying at home for a degree: E-learning in Africa | E-learning - DW (English)

Many young Africans dream of a higher education by DW (English.

Symbolbild: Computertechnologie und digitales Afrika (
Photo: picture-alliance/Photoshot
But they often don't have the means: colleges are often far away and accommodation is expensive. Online universities and e-learning may provide a viable solution.

Lectures with compulsory attendance were not an option for Alida Tapsoba. The 29-year-old from Ouagadougou, the capital of Burkina Faso, has to earn a living and therefore needs to be in control of when she works and when she studies. With this in mind, she decided to take an online course. "But I was also afraid. I wasn't sure if I could do it," the journalism student told DW. "You have to be well organized to deliver the assignments on time — especially if you work extra hours." 

Alida Tapsoba said her choice is rather expensive. She spends a lot of money on internet access. She needs to download large files, which is time-consuming and costly. Rebecca Stromeyer knows the problem well. She said that in many African countries, internet access is consierably more expensive than in Germany. Stromeyer is the founder of eLearning Africa, an annual conference which attracts experts in the field to network and exchange information in a pan-African context.

Source: DW (English

How eLearning Can Increase Company Cybersecurity Across the Board | Opinions - Infosecurity Magazine

Cybersecurity protocol is part and parcel of every business, but many still relegate it to the realm of IT, notes Juliette Peters, education consultant. 

How eLearning Can Increase Company Cybersecurity Across the Board
While it’s true that IT and tech staff are mostly in charge of setting up and maintaining your business’ security systems, today’s ever increasing digital world means that negligence is no longer an excuse.

This is where eLearning comes in. A 2016 study published in Information and Knowledge Management actually traces eLearning all the way back to the 1960s, but the steady growth of the internet has reformulated its pedagogical bent.

Today’s eLearning efforts — whether in the form of downloadable classes or interactive quizzes — are now geared towards making learning accessible.

Online courses are a popular format, but tutorials and articles are also a great way to learn. Internal communication channels and digital files can also be used to update staff members. Also, eLearning has grown in popularity due to its accessibility and depth of information, which makes it the perfect vehicle to teach your employees about cybersecurity.

Source: Infosecurity Magazine

Ramdas Honored for Efforts To Improve Research Reproducibility | Machine Learning Department, Carnegie Mellon University

Carnegie Mellon University's Aaditya Ramdas, assistant professor in the Department of Statistics & Data Science and Machine Learning Department, has received the National Science Foundation's (NSF) Faculty Early Career Development Award for his project, titled "Online Multiple Hypothesis Testing: A Comprehensive Treatment.", inform Stacy Kish, Associate Director, Research Communications at Carnegie Mellon University.

Aaditya Ramdas, assistant professor in the Department of Statistics & Data Science and Machine Learning Department, has received a National Science Foundation Faculty Early Career Development Award.
"Arguably, one of the major hurdles to reproducibility of scientific studies is the cherry picking of results among the vast array of tests run or quantities estimated," Ramdas said. "We need 'online' methods to correct for cherry picking, first acknowledging that the problem exists and then designing algorithms that can account and correct for it."

According to Ramdas, statistical methods that improve reproducibility in large-scale scientific studies will combat the increasing public distrust in science. The results of this five-year grant could transform how technological and pharmaceutical industries as well as the sciences perform large-scale hypothesis testing. In addition, it allows Ramdas to fund graduate and postgraduate students to prepare the next generation of researchers...

In this study, Ramdas will address this 'hidden' multiplicity to correct for selection bias that will improve long-term reproducibility. He hopes to develop statistical methods that will protect against the false discoveries using minimal assumptions. Ramdas aims to deliver an open-source software package to enable easier assimilation and application of these methods by other researchers.
Read more... 

Source: Carnegie Mellon University

29 New Skills You Can Now Learn on LinkedIn Learning | New Courses - The Learning Blog

Today, the workforce is rapidly evolving, bringing both progress and challenge by Zoë Kelse, Learning Supporter at Linked. 

29 New Skills You Can Now Learn on LinkedIn Learning
Photo:  Learning Blog - LinkedIn Learning
This is where adaptability comes in. Adaptability is one of the 15 most in-demand skills in the world in 2020, based on recently released LinkedIn Learning data. 

Each week, we release new courses based on insights on skill gaps and trending topics to help you adapt to an ever-changing world. Whether you’re looking for a new job or to improve in your current role, honing your skills can make you more adaptable. 

Check out one of the 29 new courses now available on LinkedIn Learning:
Read more... 

Source: The Learning Blog

Monday, January 27, 2020

Mathematician discovers conditions for stabilization of higher-order differential inequalities | Mathematics - Phys.Org

A RUDN University mathematician (Russia) and a colleague have determined the conditions for stabilization of differential inequalities that have a high order, as Phys.Org reports.

Photo: RUDN University

This result will allow mathematicians to obtain restrictions on the solutions of equations that describe some physical processes, such as diffusion processes and convection processes. The paper is published in the journal Asymptotic Analysis.

Interest in differential inequalities arises from a large number of mathematical modeling problems in natural science, as well as in solving technical and . It is often necessary to define several functions related to several differential inequalities. It is necessary to have the same number of inequalities to do this. If each of these inequalities is differential, that is, has the form of a relation connecting unknown functions and their derivatives, this is a system of differential inequalities. Systems of differential inequalities describe real with a certain degree of accuracy (for example, devices that record physical phenomena are not perfect and have some errors). It may turn out that a small error in the initial data causes significant changes in the of the . Therefore, it is important to set limits on the solutions of .

Andrey Shishkov from S.M. Nikol'skii Mathematical Institute of RUDN University and Andrej Kon'kov from Moscow State University obtained the result, which generalizes the classical Keller-Osserman condition for differential equations...

The questions were previously studied mainly for second-order differential operators, and the case of higher-order operators is much less studied. Mathematicians researched higher-order differential inequalities and obtained sufficient stabilization conditions for so-called weak solutions of differential inequalities. 
Read more...    

Additional resources  
Andrej Kon'kov et al. On stabilization of solutions of higher order evolution inequalities, Asymptotic Analysis (2019).  
DOI: 10.3233/ASY-191522

Source: Phys.Org

Scientists and mathematicians to be given fast-tracked entry to UK from February | ITV Report - ITV News

Top scientists, researchers and mathematicians will be given fast-tracked entry to the UK from next month, the Prime Minister has announced, continues ITV News.

Applicants will not need a job offer before arriving in the UK under the visa
Photo: PA
Boris Johnson said he wanted to send a message that Britain is open to the “most talented minds in the world” as the country leaves the European Union.

The “Global Talent” visa route – to be opened on February 20 – will not be capped...

And Professor Julia Buckingham, president of Universities UK, said the visa is a “positive step towards” making the UK a “magnet” for global science and research talent.

She added: “The visa route will help to ensure that universities can attract the brightest scientists and researchers to the UK with minimal barriers.”

Source: ITV News

The Growing Need for Data Scientists | Infographics - The Merkle Hash

In just one-year job listings for “data scientist” increased by an incredible 15,000% between 2011 and 2012 by Brian Wallace, The Merkle Hash. 

Photo: The Merkle Hash
The need for data scientists is expected to continue to grow as more and more data is created each day. In 2013 IBM reported that between 2011-2013 90% of the world’s data had been created just in the two years prior to that. And now it is estimated that in the next 5 years 175 billion terabytes of data will be created every day. By 2020 there will be over 2.7 million data scientist job openings to take on this massive growth. 

Data science is a continually growing field and anyone can become a data scientist. According to Dr. Jenn Gamble, Director at
“You don’t necessarily need a Ph.D. to do data science – you need an aptitude for math and a creative, problem-solving mentality.”...

Data scientists and powerful tech are essential to today’s growing data. The most popular jobs in this field today are data engineers, software engineers, and AI hardware specialists. Someone in these roles will be able to not only build AI software, create new tech but also virtually change the world. To learn more about the history, people, and tech behind data science read on to the infographic below.

Source: The Merkle Hash

Anomaly Detection: When Old Statistics School May Still Beat Super-Duper Machine Learning | Physical Sciences - Science 2.0

Photo: Tommaso Dorigo
One of the most suprising results of the "Machine Learning for Jets" (but really, for particle physics in general) workshop I attended in New York City two weeks ago was the outcome of a challenge that the organizers had proposed to the participants: find a hidden signal of some new physics process in a dataset otherwise made up of some physics background, when no information on the new physics was given, nor on the model of the background, explains Tommaso Dorigo, experimental particle physicist, who works for the INFN at the University of Padova. 

The problem is called, in statistical terms, as one of anomaly detection. In other words, you have an otherwise homogeneous dataset (with many different features per each event -okay, per each "example" if you are a statistician-, which may or may not be contaminated by some small extraneous events, drawn from a different multi-dimensional probability density function...

In statistics there is a lemma, the Neyman-Pearsons lemma, which explains that for "simple" hypothesis testing (when e.g. you want to compare the "null" hypothesis that your data is only drawn from a background distribution, to a "alternative" hypothesis that e.g. the data contains both background and a specified signal) the most powerful test statistic is the likelihood ratio of the two densities (describing signal and background). No machine learning or god-given algorithm can do better than that. On the other hand, if you do NOT know the density of signal then the alternative hypothesis is unspecified. This creates the situation that no test statistic may ever claim to be more powerful in distinguishing the null and alternative hypothesis, as the power of any given test statistic will depend on the unknown features of the signal. In other words, it does not matter how fast you run if you don't know where you are going.

So, the win of a basic statistical learning tool over complex deep learning tools should not surprise you.
Read more...  

Additional resources
Machine Learning For Jets: A Workshop In New York by Tommaso Dorigo, experimental particle physicist, who works for the INFN at the University of Padova.

Source: Science 2.0 

Wharton to continue actuarial science concentration for 3 years following student backlash | Academics - The Daily Pennsylvanian

Jason Yan, Staff - The Daily Pennsylvanian reports now, Although the actuarial science concentration was removed from Wharton's web homepage late last semester, the program is now expected to continue for three more years.  
Students expressed concerns when the actuarial science concentration was removed last semester.  
Photo: Kylie Cooper
Although the actuarial science concentration was removed from Wharton's homepage late last semester, Penn will continue to offer the program after students expressed concerns to administrators. 

The concentration was originally removed from the website in November 2019 because of the planned retirement of Jean Lemaire, director of the actuarial science program and the only faculty member currently involved in the program. However, Wharton Deputy Dean Michael Gibbons wrote in an email to The Daily Pennsylvanian that Lemaire will continue to serve as an academic advisor for the actuarial science concentration and the program is expected to continue for three more years.

Gibbons wrote that Wharton plans to offer two of the three classes Lemaire taught as part of the actuarial science concentration. Lemaire said though he will no longer teach, he has found a replacement he hopes will be confirmed by Wharton soon...

“[Actuarial science] declined nationally because of competition from other statistic specialties like big data and data science,” Lemaire said.

Actuarial science involves compiling and analyzing statistics to calculate risks in insurance and finance. The profession applies mathematics to model uncertainty and evaluates the probability and financial consequences of future events...

To become an actuary in the United States, students are required to take up to ten exams administered by either the Society of Actuaries or the Casualty Actuarial Society depending on the actuarial specialty.

Source: The Daily Pennsylvanian

Sunday, January 26, 2020

Meet the indy N.J. bookstore that was just named one of the best in the U.S. | Essex -

This N.J. bookstore is in the running to be named the best in the country, inform Barry Carter, columnist at The Star-Ledger.

[words] Bookstore in Maplewood has been selected as one of five finalists for Publishers Weekly Bookstore of the Year award.
Photo: Jonah Zimiles
Whoopi Goldberg has been to [words] Bookstore in Maplewood.

Author events for Govs. Mario Cuomo and Tom Kean have brought them there, too. Can’t forget NBA legends Earl Monroe and Bernard King and authors Harlan Coben and Zadie Smith.

Now, [words] has caught the attention of  Publishers Weekly. The book company selected [words] as one of five finalists for Bookstore of the Year during the Winter Institute, an annual meeting of the American Booksellers’ Association that was held Thursday in Baltimore...

“The bookstores who reached the finals for this year’s awards represent a broad spectrum of general independent booksellers across the country that have weathered the changes that have roiled retailing in general and bookselling in particular,” said Jim Milliot, the editorial director of Publishers Weekly. “I find it heartening that year after year we find so many strong contenders for the Bookstore of the Year Award.”