Author: Randy Olson
Dr. Randy Olson is a Senior Data Scientist at the University of Pennsylvania, where he develops state-of-the-art machine learning algorithms with a focus on biomedical applications.

TPOT Automated Machine Learning Competition

Can AutoML beat humans on Kaggle? Automated Machine Learning (AutoML) is poised to make a transformative impact on data science in 2017. At the University of Pennsylvania, we’ve been working hard to develop TPOT, a state-of-the-art open source AutoML tool

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Machine Learning Madden NFL: The best player position switches for Madden 17

A couple weeks ago, I wrote about my initial efforts toward using machine learning to model the “master equations” that govern the Madden NFL player ratings system. This week, I’d like to put those models to use to compute the

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Machine Learning Madden NFL: How Madden player ratings are actually calculated

For the past few months, I’ve been playing Madden NFL 17 in my free time. I really enjoy the team-building aspect of the franchise mode, where I’ve taken on challenges such as finally bringing the Lombardi trophy home to Philadelphia.

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Republican-leaning states tend to have more traffic deaths

Back in 2014, the U.S. Department of Transportation released a report on the (normalized) number of traffic deaths in each U.S. state. As I looked through the list, I noticed an odd correlation between the political leanings of a state

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Python 2.7 still reigns supreme in pip installs

The Python 2 vs. Python 3 divide has long been a thorn in the Python community’s side. On one hand, Python package developers face the challenge of supporting two incompatible versions of Python, which is time that could be better

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Evolution of active categorical image classification via saccadic eye movement

I put together a couple demo videos for our Active Categorical Classifier (ACC) project that we’ll be presenting at the PPSN 2016 conference. If you’re interested in this project and can’t wait for PPSN, we have: a preprint of the

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The Optimal U.S. National Parks Centennial Road Trip

In August 2016, the National Park Service celebrates their 100th year of managing the United States’ system of beautiful national parks. So what’s a better way to celebrate 100 years of stewardship than to visit all of the national parks

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Computing optimal road trips on a limited budget

About a year ago, I wrote an article introducing the concept of optimizing road trips using a combination of genetic algorithms and Google Maps. During that time, I’ve given some thought to how I could make that algorithm more useful

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How long does the average man last in bed?

A couple weeks ago, I ran across a research paper that inadvertently answered one of those awkward questions that so few people get the chance to talk about: How long does the average man last in bed? I was particularly

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Why is Reddit replacing Imgur?

In a surprise move this week, Reddit has started rolling out their own in-house image hosting service. This appears to be a direct move to replace the many image hosting services that have sprung up around Reddit—Imgur, in particular. Here’s

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