Learn R interactively with the swirl package

R, the statistical computing language of choice and what I use the most, can seem odd to those new to the language or programming. And I think this what holds a lot of people back and what keeps people stuck in limited software. The swirl package for R helps beginners get over that first hurdle by teaching you within R itself.

Reference: Learn R interactively with the swirl package

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New Clues in the Target Breach

This is a very well written summary about recent Target security breach. I would encourage you to check it out, if you are into technology a lot.

An examination of the malware used in the Target breach suggests that the attackers may have had help from a poorly secured feature built into a widely-used IT management software product that was running on the retailer’s internal network.

… This knowledge base article (PDF) published by BMC explains the Best1_user account is installed by the software to do routine tasks. That article states that while the Best1_user account is essentially a “system” or “administrator” level account on the host machine, customers shouldn’t concern themselves with this account because “it is not a member of any group (not even the ‘users’ group) and therefore can’t be used to login to the system.”

“The only privilege that the account is granted is the ability to run as a batch job,” the document states, indicating that it could be used to run programs if invoked from a command prompt. …

Reference: New Clues in the Target Breach

Octave 3.8 has been released and it has a GUI

Octave is a free, open source language for numerical computing that is mostly compatible with MATLAB. For years, the official Octave project has been strictly command-line only which puts many users off — particularly those who were used to the graphical user interface (GUI) of MATLAB. Unofficial GUIs have come and gone over the years but none of them were fully satisfactory for one reason or another.

As of the 3.8 release of Octave on 31st December 2013, this all changed when Octave started shipping with its own, official GUI. It is currently considered as ‘experimental’ by the Octave team and is obviously rough around the edges here and there but it is already quite usable.

Reference: Octave 3.8 has been released and it has a GUI

The Data Visualization Catalog

If you’ve ever struggled with what visualization to create to best show the data you have, The Data Visualization Catalog might provide just the help you need. Severino Ribecca has begun the process of categorizing data visualizations based on what relationships and properties of data that they show. With 54 visualizations currently slated to be categorized, the catalog aims to be a comprehensive list of visualizations, searchable by what you want to show.

Reference: The Data Visualization Catalog

33 Top Free Data Mining Software

Data Mining is the computational process of discovering patterns in large data sets involving methods using the artificial intelligence, machine learning, statistical analysis, and database systems with the goal to extract information from a data set and transform it into an understandable structure for further use. KNIME, R, ML-Flex, Databionic ESOM Tools, Orange, Natural Language Toolkit, SenticNet API , ELKI , RapidMiner, SCaViS, UIMA, Weka , Chemicalize.org , Vowpal Wabbit, Vowpal Wabbit, GNU Octave, Mlpy, MALLET, Shogun, Scikit-learn, LIBSVM, LIBLINEAR, Lattice Miner, Rattle GUI, Dlib, Apache Mahout, Jubatus, KEEL, Gnome-datamine-tools are some of the top free data mining software.

Reference: 33 Top Free Data Mining Software

Can an Online Education Actually Land You a Job?

While many students are flocking to new MOOCs to stay current on emerging technologies, many employers remain skeptical of nontraditional educational choices. Thus far, the one exception has been employers in technology and computer science, since MOOCS are effective at improving skills in specific topics, frequently focused on computer science, engineering and mathematics. With that as an overview, the article provides a survey of the leaders of the current MOOC landscape, pointing out the types of programs that are most popular with employers.

Reference: Can an Online Education Actually Land You a Job?

Famous movie quotes as charts

In celebration of their 100-year anniversary, the American Film Institute selected the 100 most memorable quotes from American cinema, and a few years ago, for kicks and giggles, the author put the first eight quotes into chart form.

Note: You may want to download the infographic from the quoted article to see it clearly.

Reference: Famous movie quotes as charts