2003-12-08 18:05 in /tech/nips
Session III, I picked "Algorithmic Tools Applied to Learning and Inference Problems". This started out quite interesting, but turned into a bit of a slog as he tried to cover 4 example cases, each of which could have been a 1 hour talk, in 30 minutes each.
Of these, only the first looked like it might have some relevance for us, which was "A Data Structure for Nearest Neighbors on Manifolds", which provided a technique for doing approximate near-neighbor searching on a fixed set of point, with O(log n) query time (and O(n log n) space and O(n log n) time to build). I wonder if there are any rigorous guarantees provided by our systems which perform related tasks.
"Markov Decision Processes with Nonrecurring Rewards" talked about a traveling salesman-like problem with time-sensitive rewards associated with each node.
The other two talked about error-correcting codes and learning Markov models. My brain was pretty much full for these and I didn't get too much out of them.
Anyway, now I'm going to do explore the hotel a little more, and also see if I can find Cem.
2003-12-08 15:30 in /tech/nips
Now, I know that both programmers and scientists operate on caffeine, but never did I expect that asking, "Where can I get some water?" would cause me to be stared at like a space alien. "Um, let me check," disappears behind curtain. I am not kidding when I tell you that I overheard someone say "Ask him what he means by 'water'?".
2003-12-08 15:26 in /tech/nips
Unfortunately, we thought this session started at 1, not 1:30, so arrived a bit late.
corner detection -- not scale invariant (change in resolution)
search for scale invariant feature recognition -- difference of successive gaussian blurs
Unfortunately again, I'm totally wiped out from getting up at 3:30AM. This was quite interesting, but I couldn't keep my eyes open and retreated to my room for a nap.
2003-12-08 11:32 in /tech/nips
Have arrived at the hotel and checked in and registered. Now at the tail end of the first tutorial, "Towards Brain Computer Interfacing". Playing Tetris by thought alone!
Well, pretty much only got the conclusions:
- It works!
- Currently required hundreds of hours to train the system and the user
- This might be okay for medical uses, but not general use
- Probably don't need to aim for near instant usability. Some training is okay, e.g. learning graffiti for Palm, or dictation software.
2003-12-08 05:02 in /tech/nips
Fortunately, my shuttle arrived early, 3 hours and 15 minutes before my flight.
It is a curious fact that airports are decidedly not 24-hour operations. The $64000 question is: when can you buy a cup of coffee?