Archive for Paris

BASICS workshop in Paris [29-30/09]

Posted in pictures, Statistics, Travel, University life with tags , , , , , , on September 19, 2022 by xi'an

There will be a workshop on Bayesian non-parametrics, deep learning and uncertainty quantification, marking the closure of the BASICS ANR project, at Paris Sorbonne University, on campus Pierre et Marie Curie, on 29-30 September, with many friends speaking there. The participation is free. Registration is, however, compulsory and now open.

new campus

Posted in pictures, Running, Travel, University life with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 4, 2022 by xi'an

While I am keeping my office at Porte Dauphine, undergoing major renovations (of the 1955 NATO building!), I am now spending most of my time in a more modern campus, called PariSanté, located at Porte de Versailles, with medical research teams and startups. This is where our master MASH will be located. The place is very luminous and despite the close proximity with the Paris beltway (le périf’), quiet (and much quieter than Paris Dauphine). It is also an ecological absurdity, with a huge sunroof that could not be shaded during the heat waves, plastic trees, self-induced lights, and compulsory lifts. On the memory lane, it is a trip back 35 years ago, as it sits across the road from the Balard military compound where I spent most of my military service in 1987 (working on my PhD in a research department).  And it is conveniently located half-way between home and Paris Dauphine, although not skipping the tough hill of Porte de Versailles on the way back..!

a journal of the [tolerated] plague and [mostly] pestilence year

Posted in Books, Kids, Mountains, pictures, Travel, University life with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 31, 2022 by xi'an

Read Among Our Weapons by Ben Aaronovitch, the ninth installment in the Rivers of London urban fantasy series. Which I found superior to the earlier volumes. As the ninth novel in the series, it obviously shows some signs of fatigue in the relatively thin plot that painstakingly connects a series of no-spoilers with the Spanish Inquisition, in the convenient so convenient appearance of a new kind of magical being, and in the convoluted uncovering of this connection in the final pages. However, the witty remarks of Peter Grant still make me smile and his move to becoming a father is rather charming. Recommended for the comforting feeling of being reunited with a familiar.

Over the four week summer period “everyone” was away (on vacations), I managed to deal with long delayed projects, keep my Biometrika slate mostly clean, and work on an incoming grant. Plus, made an uninterrupted series of compotes from my neighbour’s fallen apples and rhubarb sticks from the local market, as I found a much faster way to bake them in the microwave oven, with no danger for kitchen pans! Observing in the process a phase transition phenomenon where the contents very suddenly change structure and the bowl overflows, despite my frequent stirring. And I found time to lazily bike with my wife on weekends to traffic-free Paris, incl. light dinners outside (except during heatwaves), like a nice and perfectly spicy Korean bulgogi near Denfert. Had some DIY experiences as well, incl. changing my 2000 Twingo car battery, which had run flat after at least three months of idleness (now that our children no longer drive it)! Which as usual induced several (dreaded) trips to the DIY store…

Watched Extraordinary Attorney Woo, which is a Korean TV series following an autistic attorney at law, which has some original features but leaves me uneasy about its rather charicaturesque depiction of autism. At least, addressing discrimination and sexism (albeit with mixed results, as in the stereotyped representation of both female heads of the law firms). And The Soul, a Taiwanese horror + sci-fi + noir movie whose foggy atmosphere was rather appealing but alas following a terrible scenario.

new bike

Posted in Travel, University life with tags , , , , , , on August 28, 2022 by xi'an

My university, Paris Dauphine, has recently introduced some support for its cycling staff as a substitute for the compulsory support for public transportation costs. Meaning reimbursing part of the cost of buying a new bike over two years. After one too many trip to the bike repair shop, I thus started looking for a sturdy enough gravel-like) bike with disk brakes (that did not need changing every three weeks!) to handle the Paris cobbles and saw this Trek Domane on sale at the (same) shop, which I bought when returning from Québec. After a few weeks of using it (solely) between home and campus, never to go shopping or swimming!, I am definitely appreciating the comfort and efficiency of this new bike! Hopefully, this will last over the Fall, despite worsening conditions in weather and traffic!

COMPSTAT²⁰²²

Posted in Books, Statistics, Travel with tags , , , , , , , , on August 21, 2022 by xi'an

I am taking part in [twice delayed] COMPSTAT 2022 this week, held in Bologna, virtually as my travel agenda is already quite heavy for the coming Fall Term. I sort of lost count but methinks this must be the fourth edition of COMPSTAT I am attending, the first one being Bristol in 1998, then Utrecht in 2000, and Paris in 2010. As it happens, all three plenary speakers are my friends and professional colleagues, namely  Holger Detter, Igor Pruenster, and Jean-Michel Zakoian. I am talking in  an Applied Computational Bayes session organised by Daniele Durante and Giacomo Zanella, although the talk is only remotely connected with my abstract from years ago:

Evidence approximation is a central object of Bayesian inference and despite numerous advances in the past decades, there still remain challenges to be met, especially when the sample size is large. We review here some robust solutions like the reverse logistic regression and a modified harmonic mean estimator, before proposing a related algorithm for Bayesian model choice.

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