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Starting a Business at Stellenbosch University

At the last LaunchLab talk, Abey Mokgwatsane, the CEO of Ogilvy & Mather South Africa, expressed a truth that I think most of us are aware of: the only way South Africa will achieve the economic growth it needs to reduce unemployment is through the effort of entrepreneurs. As an economists, I lean heavily towards what we [...]

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graph theory basics

whilst doing my masters (which focussed on graphical models), i used to joke that i was researching the areas i loved most (graph theory), and hated most (statistics). since then my focus has changed somewhat (and i don’t hate statistics anymore), but graph theory remains fun to play with. (very) basics of graph theory simply [...]

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On the Edge

In ecology, ‘edge effect’ is an increased level of biodiversity that is observed where ecosystems meet. The slight overlap means that species from both biomes can be found there, as well as species that are specifically suited to that ecotone, or area of overlap. Think of coral reefs, for instance. These diverse ecotones are obviously [...]

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Network-inspired solutions to resource management

I recently had the opportunity to make use of a service called Car2Go in Vienna. This prompted some thoughts on ways that getting inspiration from certain network-architectures may be very useful in everyday life. Car2Go is basically a short-term car-rental service launched by Daimler in 2011. Users sign up for a lifetime membership and get access [...]

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short introduction to image parsing

humans easily do what computers cannot – look at a scene and not only recognise the objects in it, but also understand the image. a quick example:   looking at this picture, humans take a split second to recognise that there are two dogs (most likely border collies), a girl about to throw a ball, [...]

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Rust: A language for the future

I can already hear everyone moaning about why another language has been created and how it will differ from the vast selection of languages that already exist. What will make it different and how will it actually improve the current situation where choosing the right language for the job has come down to what language [...]

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The Right Tool for the Job

Someone comes up to you and says “So what’s the best [programming language | text editor | IDE | operating system | browser | database solution | version control system]?” You slouch back in your chair, look blankly up at the ceiling, and a small frown starts to form on your face. You say the [...]

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Trend Anomaly in Academic Publication Data

The predominant part of my Master’s research involves using a dataset about published academic papers in the computer science domain. I am using various ranking algorithms on this dataset to identify important papers and authors. During the course of my research I looked at some trends about the way researchers have published articles over time. [...]

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Linux as an Alternative to Windows 8

Next week will see the release of the latest version of Windows, Microsoft’s popular operating system, in the form of Windows 8. This release will see some major changes to the operating system. The biggest and most obvious change will be the default user interface, which has moved away from the traditional desktop interface to one [...]

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On Art and Development

I played the recorder. And xylophone. And violin, flute and trumpet. And TV and computer, especially imaginative roleplaying and adventure games. I made crystals and castles, bombs and swords, sandboards and robots and model planes, folded paper and cards and balloons, and designed, sketched, modelled, and animated.

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