Friday, September 29, 2017

Upgrading Octave to the Latest Version on Ubuntu

These days, I'm following the machine learning course in Coursera conducted by Andrew Ng. In this course, the most important thing is the exercises. Since I'm on Linux platform with an Ubuntu 16.04 version, I installed Octave for this work as follows.

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install octave

The latest Octave version on Ubuntu 16.04 repositories is 4.0.0. However, while working on the exercise of this course, I realized that this version has some problems which make it unsuitable to use with the sample Octave scripts provided in the course. The advice was to use a higher version of Octave than 4. In order to do that, we have to add a new PPA to the system as follows.

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:octave/stable
sudo apt-get update

Now, let's remove the whole previous Octave version and install from the beginning with the new PPA.

sudo apt-get remove octave
sudo apt-get autoremove
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade
sudo apt-get install octave

Now, the version we get is the latest version in the new PPA. You can check it by first starting Octave and typing "version" on the prompt. The version I got was Octave 4.2.1.


Friday, September 22, 2017

"AI and The Future" by Margaret Boden

Last Tuesday, I attended to an interesting guest talk by Professor Margaret Boden from University of Sussex under the topic AI and The Future. Even though I'm not much into Artificial Intelligence topic, I decided to attend to this session simply driven by curiosity. Most importantly, this is the first session of its kind I'm attending in UCD and therefore I just wanted to see how guest talks are going to be here. The talk was delivered at the Moore Auditorium in UCD Science Center.
In her talk, she mostly talked about the implications of AI systems in our everyday life and what she believes as the things to be worried about. The concern she pointed out in her talk is that, when AI systems replace human presence from certain activities, we tend to receive bad results and bad long term impacts on our society even though AI application can seem to be useful and makes life easier. In order to support her point, she took a broad range of examples including autonomous drones, AI systems to take care of elderly and kids.

Even though I have a habit of posing a question when I attend to sessions like these, unfortunately, I couldn't ask a question in this session. They were running out of time and many people wanted to ask questions. However, I feel that it's worth the time I invested on attending this guest talk. I will hopefully attend to the future sessions organized by them.