PyDev of the Week: Sophy Wong | The Mouse vs The Python

PyDev of the Week: Sophy Wong | The Mouse vs The Python

This week we welcome Sophy Wong (@sophywong) as our PyDev of the Week! Sophy is a maker who uses Circuit Python for creating wearables. She is also a writer and speaker at Maker events. You can see some of her creations on her Youtube Channel or her website. Let’s take a few moments to get to know her better!

Sophy's LED Manicure

Can you tell us a little about yourself (hobbies, education, etc):

I am a designer and maker currently working mostly with wearable electronics projects. My background is in graphic design, and I have also worked in fashion and costumes on my way to wearable electronics. I like to explore the different ways people interact with technology, and much of my work is inspired by sci-fi and pop culture. My projects often combine technology, like microcontrollers and 3D printing, with hand crafts like sculpting, painting, and sewing.

Why did you start using Python?

I discovered Python through Adafruit’s development of Circuit Python. Adafruit’s thorough documentation and huge library of tutorial projects make it easy for me to learn and write code for my projects. I’m primarily a designer, and code is a tool I use to bring my ideas to life. Circuit Python helps me learn programming basics, and is also powerful enough to support more complex projects as I gain more skills.

What other programming languages do you know and which is your favorite?

I also use Arduino for some projects, which lets me use the many fantastic Arduino libraries out there, like FastLED. I often use MakeCode when creating a project for a tutorial or educational workshop. As a visual programming tool, MakeCode is intuitive to use and easy to explain with screenshots. It’s still robust enough to support fairly complex projects, and is a great first step before going further with Circuit Python or Arduino.

Thanks for doing the interview, Sophy!

The rest of the post PyDev of the Week: Sophy Wong appeared first on The Mouse Vs. The Python.

from The Mouse Vs. The Python https://ift.tt/2MTAbQI

Advertisements

TechSpark Fargo: Grand Farm project will create the farm of the future | Microsoft on the Issues

TechSpark Fargo: Grand Farm project will create the farm of the future | Microsoft on the Issues

For generations, farmers throughout North Dakota have traditionally hired seasonal farm hands to help with planting, harvesting and other jobs. Digital technologies and big data are transforming agriculture. Today, those same farmers need to hire technologists, programmers and data scientists to improve productivity to meet food demands, boost yields to increase profitability, environmentally sustain the land and improve safety. But, according to the consulting firm Accenture, less than 20 percent of acreage today is managed using digital ag tech.

Grand Farm
In West Coast tech corridors 1,800 miles away, technologists, entrepreneurs and venture capitalists are coming up with their next big ag tech ideas. But too often those ideas are disconnected from the farmers, ranchers and agribusinesses the technology is meant to help. We believe meaningful innovation will happen when farmers are a part of the solution.

Drone investment
Our TechSpark signature investment in the Grand Farm will leverage projects like a TechSpark North Dakota investment we made earlier this year in unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), which most people know as drones, to provide access to low-cost aerial data imagery. Gov. Burgum, local businesses, universities and economic development organizations in North Dakota have an ambition to be the epicenter of U.S. drone innovation and entrepreneurism.We also plan on leveraging Microsoft technologies like those used in FarmBeats at the Grand Farm. FarmBeats uses AI in data-driven farming to augment human knowledge and help increase farm productivity and decrease costs. It uses inexpensive IoT sensors, drones, low-cost broadband connectivity using TV white spaces, and vision and machine learning algorithms to help maximize the use of agricultural land. FarmBeats gives farmers precise information about soil temperatures and soil moisture so they know exactly when the best times are for planting, watering and fertilizing, as well as the precise amount of water and fertilizer needed.

Rural broadband
Getting data from the farm is extremely difficult given there is often no broadband available on many farms. In the U.S., more than 19 million people living in rural America don’t have access to broadband internet. The farm of the future requires rural broadband.

Digital skills and employability
Ag tech innovation and broadband-connected farms require the right talent – people who know how to create and use new ag technology.

This starts with students in the region, who need the opportunity to study computer science in high school if they are to succeed in the digital era. But only 45 percent of U.S. high schools teach computer science, according to the nonprofit Code.org. Microsoft’s Technology and Literacy in Schools (TEALS) program is helping schools across the nation and British Columbia build their own computer science programs through partnerships between teachers and volunteers from the technology sector.

The rest of the post TechSpark Fargo: Grand Farm project will create the farm of the future appeared first on Microsoft on the Issues.

from Microsoft on the Issues https://ift.tt/2MQusen
via IFTTT

TechSpark El Paso-Juarez: Igniting digital transformation throughout the Borderplex | Microsoft on the Issues

TechSpark El Paso-Juarez: Igniting digital transformation throughout the Borderplex | Microsoft on the Issues
The El Paso-Ciudad Juárez Borderplex (Microsoft article photo)

On the 32nd parallel in a gap within the Franklin Mountain range sits an international intersection where two nations, cultures, languages and people meld together. Every day thousands of people legally cross back and forth between El Paso, Texas, and Ciudad Juárez, Mexico, on their way to jobs, schools, doctor’s appointments, shopping centers and the homes of family and friends. This harmonious exchange has taken place for more than 400 years, uniting neighbors through shared social ties, geography, history and, most importantly, an interlinked economy.

This active border crossing alone accounts for 12 percent of total U.S. trade with Mexico, close to $45 billion per year. Businesses in El Paso and Juárez exchange goods and services back and forth, creating products commonly made in the Mexican city with American components using advanced manufacturing technologies, which are typically then transported by enterprises in El Paso using advanced supply chain and logistics technologies.

Beyond the people and goods, El Paso and Ciudad Juárez also converge in a cross-border flow of ideas, ambition and aspirations that have shaped the region for centuries. This forward-looking spirit is what attracted us to the region in 2017, when we launched Microsoft TechSpark to create new economic opportunities and help digitally transform established industries with modern software and cloud services. It’s also why today we are announcing that we are expanding the TechSpark El Paso program to include Ciudad Juárez and are making a $1.5 million investment in the bi-national Bridge Accelerator.

TechSpark is a six-community initiative aimed at bringing a bit of the Silicon Valley to the middle of the country by promoting the infusion of transformational technologies into the local economy through investments in computer science education in high schools, digital skills training, high-speed broadband and technology for nonprofits. To manage this broad portfolio, we hired a TechSpark manager, JJ Childress, who lives and works in El Paso.

The Bridge Accelerator

One person who is contributing to the cross-border stream of innovation is Ricardo Mora, a self-described third-generation serial entrepreneur who has built successful businesses on both sides of the border. Mora runs the Technology-Hub (T-Hub) and has a vision for the region. It’s one that includes the digital transformation of businesses and digital skills for the people living here.

Microsoft is partnering with T-Hub on The Bridge Accelerator, which is an intensive initiative with custom programs for the manufacturing industry, entrepreneurs and established companies. It’s designed to accelerate the growth of businesses on both sides of the border by combining technology with business acumen while creating advantageous connections between entrepreneurs and corporations. The program includes an early-investment venture capital fund and a digital fabrication lab called the Fab Lab that helps fledgling start-ups create prototypes of their inventions.

TEALS: Computer Science in High Schools

The key to fueling this cross-border innovation is talent – people who know how to create and use new technology. This starts with students in the region, who need the opportunity to study computer science in high school if they are to succeed in the digital era. But only 45 percent of U.S. high schools teach computer science, according to the nonprofit Code.org. Microsoft’s Technology and Literacy in Schools (TEALS) program is helping schools across the nation and Canada build their own computer science programs through partnerships between teachers and volunteers from the technology sector.

To read this post in Spanish, click here.

The rest of the post TechSpark El Paso-Juarez: Igniting digital transformation throughout the Borderplex appeared first on Microsoft on the Issues.

from Microsoft on the Issues https://ift.tt/2MJb9DA
via IFTTT

PyDev of the Week: Elana Hashman | The Mouse vs The Python

PyDev of the Week: Elana Hashman | The Mouse vs The Python

This week we welcome Elana Hashman (@ehashdn) as our PyDev of the Week! Elana is a director of the Open Source Initiative and a fellow of the Python Software Foundation. She is also the Clojure Packaging Team lead and a Java Packaging Team member. You can see some of her work over on Github. You can also learn more about Elana on her website. Let’s take a few moments to get to know her better!

Can you tell us a little about yourself (hobbies, education, etc):

I love to bake and cook, so my Twitter feed tends to be full of various bread pictures or whatever dish I’ve whipped up over the weekend. When I was a kid, I was completely hooked on the cooking channel—my favourite shows were “Iron Chef” and “Good Eats”—and I thought I’d become a chef when I grew up. That’s my back up plan if I ever drop out of tech!

I’m Canadian, and I attended the University of Waterloo in Ontario to study mathematics, majoring in Combinatorics & Optimization with a Computer Science minor. The University of Waterloo is famous for its co-operative study program, where students take an extra year to finish their degrees and forfeit their summers off to complete 5-6 paid co-op work terms. To give my schedule a bit more flexibility, I actually dropped out of the co-op program, but prior to graduating I completed 4 co-op terms, a Google Summer of Code internship, some consulting, and even became an open source maintainer. I learned how to admin servers for the Computer Science Club, and a group of my friends and I revived the Amateur Radio Club after it had been inactive for a decade.

Amateur (or “ham”) radio got me into playing with electronics, so I learned how to solder and now I occasionally build cool things like the PiDP-11 kit. And now that I can solder a PCB, I want to see if I can solder silver, so I’m signing up to take some jewellery-making classes this fall. I also take care of a bunch of wonderful, mostly low-maintenance houseplants. One day I hope to have a full-sized backyard for growing vegetables and setting up radio antennas!

Why did you start using Python?

I first learned Python to contribute to the OpenHatch project back in 2013. I had signed up for the Open Source Day at the Grace Hopper Celebration and was assigned to the WordPress group, but I ran into Asheesh Laroia and Carol Willing earlier at the conference and they poached me! I was amazed at how easy it was to read and understand the project code, even though I hadn’t written any Python before.

My very first bug assignment turned out to be more complex than anticipated, but I was later able to make a contribution and completed an entire summer internship with OpenHatch through Google Summer of Code, where I learned how to write Django and do Python web development. I then maintained the OpenHatch website and backend codebase for a little over a year, before the project started to wind down.

What other programming languages do you know and which is your favorite?

Oh, a lot! My first programming language was probably mIRCscript, which I learned as a teenager to make IRC bots and triggers, but I didn’t pick up any substantial programming skills until university. In school I studied Scheme, C, C++ and bash, and I learned SQL, Perl, and C# during my co-op jobs.

After I graduated, I worked primarily in Clojure, a dialect of Lisp that runs on the JVM. I might call that my favourite programming language because it’s so expressive and powerful, though I’m fond of all Lisps. Most folks would describe Python as a high-level language, but I can write much more terse, elegant abstractions in a Lisp than I can in Python! It’s the only language I’ve written where my colleagues have complimented my code by calling it “pretty” 😀

These days I don’t write much Clojure or Python; for my current day job, I work as a site reliability engineer for OpenShift on Azure, which means I write a lot of Golang and a little bash. I find Go a little bit too low-level for my tastes, but it’s really satisfying and cool to be able to contribute to upstream Kubernetes!

Thanks for doing the interview, Elana!

The rest of the post PyDev of the Week: Elana Hashman appeared first on The Mouse Vs. The Python.

from The Mouse Vs. The Python https://ift.tt/2MbaZWL

Samsung and other Google partners show interest in Fuchsia – 9to5Google

Samsung and other Google partners show interest in Fuchsia – 9to5Google

Not frequent enough for my tastes, but it looks like Fuchsia is near the point of being the official successor of Android. And more importantly from Google’s point of view is direct control, unlike Android which is open source. Here’s hoping for more consistent news on that front.

This may be related to this announcement and article on ZDNet.

Over the past two years, we’ve closely followed the development of Google’s Fuchsia OS and the various hardware products it supports. Thus far, these products have almost all been Made by Google devices like the Pixelbook and Nest Hub, used simply as testbeds for Fuchsia on various form factors. But if Fuchsia is to ever succeed, Google will need to partner with other companies on developing their own Fuchsia-based hardware and software projects.

This week in Fuchsia Friday, we take a look at the various Google partners that have looked into Fuchsia OS, including familiar names like Samsung and Sony.

Samsung and other Google partners show interest in Fuchsia – 9to5Google https://ift.tt/31dw877 via Tumblr and IFTTT

Microsoft invited Jason Ward to its fall Surface event — and it was AWESOME | a certified Warditorial

Microsoft invited Jason Ward to its fall Surface event — and it was AWESOME | a certified Warditorial

It does help to point out that Mr. Jason Ward has been talking about devices similar to what Microsoft announced this month for many months now. Clearly someone in Redmond was listening as far as this type of hardware is concerned, Jason is the Mary Jo Foley of Surface devices. And that’s a compliment to both, who I follow and listen to.

Last week Microsoft sponsored my wife and me at its biggest Surface event ever, and it was amazing!

On October 2, 2019, Microsoft set the internet ablaze with an event that reflected a refinement and evolution of its successful Surface hardware. The accelerant for this inferno was the addition of bold category-defining devices to the Surface line of first-party products. Microsoft positions these products as reference hardware to guide industry partners as they build Windows, and now with Surface Duo, Android devices.

Surface Pro did this for 2-in-1s, which even now Apple is mimicking. Surface Pro X, Surface Earbuds, Surface Neo, and Surface Duo are meant to encourage OEMs to create current generation products as well as create categories for what Microsoft sees as next-generation computing.

the rest of the post comes from Windows Central – News, Forums, Reviews, Help for Windows 10 and all things Microsoft. https://ift.tt/2nIdYN2
via IFTTT

UPDATE

I found another Microsoft focused outlet that not only covered the event (would have loved to get on a plane to Seattle to see it personally, but…) but asked some of the same questions that Jason had for the past months and years since the mobile industry essentially became 2 flavors only. Another view of the Surface Duo can be found here.

CFTC says cryptocurrency ether is a commodity, and ether futures are next

Last December, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) issued a public call for feedback to “better inform the Commission’s understanding” of the Ethereum network and the cryptocurrency Ether.

from CryptoBlock CurrencyChain https://ift.tt/2M5S93o
via IFTTT