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  1. What is Data Science? Data science involves extracting insights and knowledge from structured and unstructured data using scientific methods, processes, algorithms, and systems. It combines statistics, mathematics, computer science, and domain expertise to analyze and interpret complex data.

    Key Components of Data Science:

    1. Data Collection: Gathering raw data from various sources like databases, APIs, sensors, etc.

    2. Data Cleaning and Preprocessing: Organizing, cleaning, and preparing data for analysis. This involves handling missing values, outliers, and inconsistencies.

    3. Exploratory Data Analysis (EDA): Understanding the data by visualizing, summarizing, and exploring patterns, correlations, and relationships.

    4. Machine Learning: Using algorithms to build predictive models and make data-driven decisions. This involves supervised (predictive modeling) and unsupervised learning (clustering, pattern recognition).

    5. Big Data Technologies: Handling massive volumes of data using tools like Hadoop, Spark, and distributed computing frameworks.

    6. Data Visualization: Communicating insights effectively through charts, graphs, and dashboards using tools like Tableau, Matplotlib, or D3.js.

    7. Domain Expertise: Understanding the specific field or industry to extract meaningful insights that impact decision-making.

    Tools and Technologies in Data Science:

    • Programming Languages: Python, R, SQL
    • Libraries and Frameworks: Pandas, NumPy, SciPy, Scikit-learn (for Python), TensorFlow, Keras (for deep learning), ggplot2, dplyr (for R)
    • Big Data Tools: Hadoop, Spark, Kafka, Hive
    • Visualization Tools: Tableau, Power BI, Matplotlib, Plotly

    Applications of Data Science:

    • Healthcare: Predictive analytics, disease outbreak prediction, personalized medicine
    • Finance: Risk assessment, fraud detection, algorithmic trading
    • E-commerce: Recommendation systems, customer segmentation
    • Marketing: Customer behavior analysis, targeted advertising
    • Transportation: Route optimization, demand forecasting

    Career Paths in Data Science:

    • Data Scientist
    • Data Analyst
    • Machine Learning Engineer
    • Data Engineer
    • Business Intelligence Analyst

    Skills Required:

    • Proficiency in programming languages like Python, R, or SQL
    • Statistical analysis and modeling
    • Data wrangling and preprocessing
    • Machine learning algorithms and techniques
    • Problem-solving and critical thinking skills

    Challenges in Data Science:

    • Data Quality: Dealing with incomplete or inconsistent data
    • Privacy and Ethics: Ensuring data privacy and ethical use
    • Model Interpretability: Understanding and explaining complex models
    • Scaling Algorithms: Applying models to big data efficiently

    Data science is a vast and continually evolving field with immense opportunities and challenges. If you're interested, diving into courses, online resources, and practical projects can be a great way to start your journey


  2. Seven years later, still pinned baby! Had a bit of a nostalgia moment for those mafia days
  3. @flamebirde I came back on today and saw this. I'm still alive, and hear you loud and clear. I'd wager a lot of people have moved on with their lives but were made better people through playing Mafia and being a part of this welcoming community, and at least had a great time! The game lives on somewhere, if not in this community then in new ones
  4. It still humbles me to this day that bringing the simple game of mafia to Brainden has spawned such a dynamic, devoted community (and ring of associated websites) of intelligent players. Keep on innovating and having fun And don't forget to go outside! haha
  5. I agree with pretty much everything been said so far, especially itachi's recommendations, though I'd like to add... A SCANNER DARKLY (some of the most intelligent/witty dialogue i've ever seen... and VERY cool animation style... and a killer story based on an awesome book by Philip K Dick) SPIRITED AWAY (complex and interesting) MOON (very psychological...smart and all twisty-like) THE DEPARTED (my favorite crime drama...so good...)
  6. Writing - nothing else is so basic and expressive except drawing, which is less intellectual though. So I would have to say writing. The way meaningless symbols can be fused into meaning is beautiful
  7. Yes at your age I had somewhat similar views and thought they would never change; this is characteristic of views held out of ignorance of the reality, instead of actual experience with an issue. Just keep an open mind and an open heart and you'll find your own path
  8. 2011 was great but 2012 is going to rock some socks people! So much positive things are going to happen for the world in this year, I have a feeling anyway. Evolution & Revolution. People are rising up against corrupt governments, in America and abroad. The internet has made us more connected than ever before but we must also be sure to not let it disconnect us from those people & things that truly matter.
  9. All valid points... you are very smart... thank you for admitting it doesn't make people go crazy (quite the opposite). However, I do have a couple bones to pick. About the medical thing, the system is nearly a joke. At least where I live in Ann Arbor, pretty much anyone can get a card if they shell out like 200 bucks to a corrupt doctor. I know it's even easier in Cali. But that's more a reflection on our bloated health care system. Now, about addiction, also valid - it irks me when super pro-weed people say it's "not addictive" and "it's totally safe". Well, no: it's not safe for your lungs if you smoke it. Otherwise it is safe. So if you ingest it orally or vaporize it, it is indeed 'totally safe' as far as we know, and there is extensive research. And it's true that it's not chemically addictive like cocaine, alcohol or tobacco - however it does make you feel good and anything that makes you feel good can be psychologically addictive and harmful to your life if you let it take over from other well-rounded activities. People can be addicted in this manner to all kinds of things, from Food to TV to video games to Brainden for that matter. Including weed. It is not a chemically fueled addiction like coke, but more of a socially fueled addiction - "all my friends smoke so I do" sort of thing. It's about how you spend your time, & what you think really matters in life. So addiction is a complex topic. There is a small minority of marijuana users who smoke constantly and let it consume their life and may stop them from doing other things - this I would call addiction, however it is psychological, not chemical. They have other problems and if not for weed they would find something else to fill some void in their life. Now the majority of users only use in certain occasions and for certain mentally-healthy reasons. Weed is very safe if used properly and believe it or not, most people do. Ohh the gateway drug argument. This is complex too but generally not true, for the following reasons: (1) people who want to do drugs are going to do them. Usually the first one they get their hands on, is the easiest one to find: marijuana. Hence the gateway illusion. But soon enough if they want to hard drugs they go there. But the vast rest of users stay with marijuana and occasional psychedelic use. That is the lifestyle they choose to live and it doesn't affect you. (2) it is no "A-OK". If you're a parent do you drink alcohol in front of your kid? This is a thousand times worse (for body, mind). Yet it is socially acceptable. Ultimately it just depends on the type of person. There is a rare case where someone is goaded, through acceptance of weed, into taking harder drugs and becoming addicted to them. I've actually seen this happen, more than once. But a hundred times more often than that I know those who never moved past weed because they don't want to. It's all about who you are and what you want to do.... saying "if you try weed it opens up all other drugs" is ignorant of the fact that most people trying it really aren't so stupid that they don't realize there's a difference between, say, weed and heroin. Because the difference from caffeine to weed is incredibly smaller than the difference from weed to heroin. It's a similar situation. After trying a cup of coffee you're not about to magically 'gateway' into rolling up a spliff, and rolling up a spliff you're not about to magically 'gateway' into shooting meth into your eyeballs. Also, regarding the whole gateway thing, the whole point of legalizing it, is to separate weed from the rest of drugs. Nowadays, your teenage kids will go to their drug dealer to buy their weed (Don't be naive, your kid probably has smoked). Their dealer is likely to have other drugs or be connected to other dealers who have other, harder drugs. This is the source of gateway-fearmongering. If weed were legal, your kids would buy it at your local head shop or gas station. And never meet dealers and gang criminals in the first place, never even have the chance of coming into contact with harder drugs. Legalization SOLVES the gateway problem don't you see? I could go on about other reasons to legalize but I don't want to drift away from addressing the points you brought up Anyway have a happy 2012!
  10. This shouldn't even be debated anymore: Legalize it. Get thousands of innocent people out of jail. End the insanity that is the War on Drugs. Billions of taxpayer dollars are yearly thrown into COMPLETELY FAILED attempts to stop peaceful hippie kids from smoking herbs; meanwhile the CIA sells guns and drugs in third world countries.
  11. itachi! Long time no see, what's up man Haven't been on brainden in forever it seems but this topic opened a potentially interesting can of worms so we'll see. Also, haven't forgotten the untitled PHOENIX project ;D I did get that writers guild thing in the mail last year. & From what you're saying it sounds like you're gonna be voting for Ron paul 2012
  12. Those who don't make an attempt to change things will be eternally stuck in their rut (or until someone else changes it for them). I admit it is almost certainly futile. That doesn't make it less important. But I also don't really think about politics THAT much on a daily basis so I feel where you're coming from
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