Ian Mulvany

February 2, 2023

What are the hard problems in innovating in healthcare?

Someone pointed out GlassHealth to me - https://blog.glass.health/company/ - a new startup that is building tools to help doctors. Their first tool is Glass Notebook, an online notebook for doctors to track their information, inspired by tooling like Notion, and dare I say it tools like ToddlyWiki. This whole area of semi-structured do...
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January 26, 2023

usage shapes computing, computing shapes usage

Our knowledge world is in the process of a shift in affordances. The development of large language models is creating tools and assistants that will change how we interact with information. I feel sometimes that I have a seat near the window, looking out at these changes happening before my eyes, but being separated from them, as I'm n...
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January 7, 2023

A scaled way to step back from twitter.

Following a post on the topic from Nate Mattis, I realised that it’s not enough to just use twitter less. You kind of have to tell folks that you are using it less. The reason is that it’s important to how our decision effect the network, for the network to be able to sense what is happening (broadly). One way to do this is to use a bo...
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January 7, 2023

Martin Fenner has launched a science blog indexing service

Are you a science blogger? Do you blog about your science? If so martijn Fenner has just launched a new service that might be interesting for you - the rogue scholar - https://rogue-scholar.org/#features. You point it at your blog feed and it provides full text indexing, assignment of a DOI and preservation. I love this idea. The norms...
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January 5, 2023

This researcher does not exist

I'd like to introduce you to Niamh Martins: This is her research biography: “Niamh Martins is an early career researcher and professor of ecology at the University of Galway in Ireland. She received her undergraduate degree in biology from the University of Dublin, and went on to earn her master's and PhD in ecology from the University...
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January 1, 2023

My 2022 in review

year in review - 2022 climbing A good year. About 290 Boulder problems climbed in contrast to 315 in 2021, but there has been a good shift in difficulty with 73 V4s in 2022 vs 45 in 2021, and in 2022 I tried v5s about 60 times, succeeding 7 times, compared to a much lower attempt rate in 2021. In 2020 I only did 7 V4s, so this is good ...
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December 25, 2022

async code reviews kill throughput.

This video about continuous code review is excellent https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=fYFruezJEDs. The main takeaway is that in order to get reasonable throughout along with retaining code quality, you need to look to techniques of cop creation (pairing or mobbing). Taking a economic systems approach to what happens with pull requests the...
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December 25, 2022

How team composition affects science.

This talk from James Evans from 2019 is a great synopsis of the findings of his group about how small disconnected teams are much more valuable for science than large tightly connected teams. https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=XSAlAcGwW8c&t=950s&pp=2AG2B5ACAQ%3D%3D It’s an insight that rings true - more independent investigation of reality ...
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December 21, 2022

Micro Book Review - Going Digital

Going Digital by Lyndsey Jones and Balvinder Singh Powar This is a micro-review of the the book Going Digital - what it takes for smoother transitions - https://www.amazon.co.uk/Going-Digital-Lyndsey-Jones/dp/1292375671/ref=sr_1_1?crid=21PD84V32VU1J&keywords=going+digital+book&qid=1671652221&sprefix=goi%2Caps%2C1966&sr=8-1. Overall I r...
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December 17, 2022

What trends in open science make me think about.

I was reading through this update on open science news from September (I’m on a kick to try and read through all of my open browser tabs before the end of the year) https://council.science/current/blog/open-science-round-up-september-2022/ It’s a really good update with a lot of activity happening. The general sense I get is around dis...
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December 12, 2022

Some quick reflections on week 49

Taking a moment to look back at the past week there have been a few really nice highlights. This was STM week. The Startup fair on the Tuesday was a real highlight. It was one of the best SSP events that I've been too. I'll write up some notes about some of the startups that I saw there - eventually. I missed the FutureLab meeting on t...
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December 9, 2022

a nice resource for learning how to graph things

If you ever want to get into plotting data in Python then please do check out this site - https://aeturrell.github.io/coding-for-economists/vis-common-plots.html It shows you how to create the same graph in a number of different popular graphing libraries in Python, a great resource.
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December 9, 2022

what will be hard and what will be easy with AI

The recent release of ChatGPT is all I am reading about, and I'm having a lot of fun playing with it too. It's shifting the goalposts on what is hard for an AI, so it seems like a good point to link to this post - https://clivethompson.medium.com/when-robots-attack-83102761c6d5 which talks about Moravec's Paradox - it's easy to make ma...
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December 9, 2022

What looks interesting in AWS going in to 2023?

I'm a very bit fan of Amazon Web Services. Every role that I have had since 2010 has involved some level of involvement with AWS and now the scale of services provided, and the pace of change, are just too large and rapid for me to keep on top of. AWS Reinvent just wrapped up and this page https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/aws/top-announcem...
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November 29, 2022

book review - rendezvous with Rama - Arthur c Clark.

#book/review I read a lot of science fiction when is as growing up, and I was by far more of an Isaac Asimov reader than an Arthur c Clark reader, so my coverage of the classics in the genre from art Chue c Clark is pretty low. In the summer my brother in law was reading rendezvous with Rama and when he finished he gave me the copy. I ...
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November 22, 2022

Two pieces of news regarding large language models

(a scientist writing a paper with a robot - Dalle) Within the last week papers with code and Facebook released Galactica - a large language model trained on the scientific research literature. https://galactica.org. It looks like you could download the model and get started with it pretty quickly (though I failed to get it running on a...
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November 12, 2022

eLife, peer review, and architectures of attention

(How I imagine peer review works - via Stable Diffusion) #blog/draft #publihsing #stm #peer-review #elife eLife announced a new peer review model a few weeks back that will be fully rolled out by end of Jan 2023. It’s received a lot of attention, so you may have heard about it already. This post outlines the model, some reactions to it...
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November 8, 2022

fast tools for data processing

I hardly cut any code any more, but that doesn't stop me being interested in tooling. My language of choice for many years has been python, and the following post: https://til.simonwillison.net/duckdb/parquet is a nice short overview of how to use DuckDB (https://duckdb.org) to query parquet files blazingly fast. Simon manages to sum o...
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November 6, 2022

Questions to test your idea with

This post from Isabel Thompson - https://typeshare.co/isabelthompson/posts/7-questions-darpa-developed-to-assess-research-proposals talks about seven questions to ask about a research proposal. It reminded me of advice from paul graham: # Paul Graham’s Advice Who is your user? What problem are you helping them with? Why is this a probl...
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November 5, 2022

What will be the effect of Elon Musk on Altmetrics?

(a male tech billionaire wearing a puffer jacket, pouring petrol over a stack of burning library books, photo, life magazine - Dalle) #blog #twitter #altmetrics #predictions Caveat first, there is a lot to unpack with Musk's purchase of twitter. Twitter operates at scale, as individuals it is very hard for us to reason about systems at...
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October 28, 2022

Wiley Partner Solutions

A few years ago Wiley bought Atypon, the main hosting provider for their journals. That kind of made sense — owning the infrastructure that you run on. At the time it caused conniptions amongst other publishers who were hosted on Atypon (I was working at SAGE at the time. For a period of time there was a palpable fury in some quarters)...
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September 19, 2022

A good overview of challenges in adopting AI in healthcare.

“At a conference in 2016, Geoffrey Hinton, British cognitive psychologist and “godfather” of AI, said radiologists would soon go the way of typesetters and bank tellers: “People should stop training radiologists now. It’s just completely obvious that, within five years, deep learning is going to do better.”” Obviously today we have not...
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September 7, 2022

When will researchers use AI to manipulate images?

(broken ceramic sample after a compression test - via Sylvain Deville generated by OpenAI) Inspired by this twitter thread - https://twitter.com/DevilleSy/status/1567412785897676800?s=20&t=CcZeMymoXFtaRliENhytUA I was wondering what it would look like when researchers start to use new image generation tools to manipulate or fabricate d...
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September 5, 2022

Some quick Links - End of summer 2022 edition

(a hurdle race, where the hurdles are made out of internet browsers”) A paper on ArXiV looking at the impact of code quality on delivery . one caveat is that the study is from a company that offers tools to look at code quality, but the takeaway is that their measures indicate that “poor” code quality on average doubles time for develo...
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September 5, 2022

Using GTP-3 to do some data cleaning

Ian × DALL·E | a friendly robot goes to secondary school for the first day, still from a studio Ghibli film. My son is just entering year six in primary school. That means that over the next few months we have to visit secondary schools in our area to learn which ones we want to apply to. The schools all have different visiting dates, ...
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September 3, 2022

When should you build platforms?

Don’t build a platform, build one thing that works! - this post (Link) covers some very good advice on how to evolve towards platforms - or not. The key message here is to avoid enterprise thinking and premature optimisation of committing to platform delivery before there are real world use cases. I’ve added some key quotes below. A go...
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August 26, 2022

DocMaps and integrations

(image via DreamStudio) Yesterday I wrote up some thoughts about DocMaps and I asked whether they might be interoperable with MECA. Tony Alves - the co-chair of the MECA standing committee reached out with the following: “we had Gabe Stein come and talk to us about DocMaps. We are currently revising our Reviewer XML guidelines/schema a...
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August 25, 2022

docmaps - perhaps an effort to represent the creation of knowledge?

(image created by https://beta.dreamstudio.ai/dream). Knowledge Futures Group, eLife, Cold spring harbour press, and EMBO are collaborating on the development of https://docmaps.knowledgefutures.org. In one place they talk about it as being “a community-endorsed framework for representing research object-level review/editorial processe...
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August 12, 2022

some experiments with DALL.E and AI generated images

("Robots painting an imagined future" - https://labs.openai.com/s/DVLdRxX1ttkpr02Y3E0GmHon). This month I got access to DALL.E - the AI tool for generating images from text prompts. It's astonishing. It feels odd using it, almost an amplification of the blank canvas problem. I spent a lot of time looking at images that were created by ...
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July 27, 2022

Book review - “The Storm before the Storm” by Mike Duncan.

#blog/posted#book/review When the Republic began to break down in the late second century it was not the letter of Roman law that eroded, but respect for the mutually accepted bonds of mos maiorum - Mike Duncan I’ve just finished reading The Storm before the Storm by Mike Duncan, and I can't recommend it highly enough. The book covers ...
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