Ever wonder what Shakespeare would make of modern life? Better yet, what he would think of all the new ways of communicating that technology offers? Well, if the creative minds of the Julia meetup in Dublin are any indication, Shakespeare would have found plenty of inspiration in Ireland’s thriving tech scene.
Machine Learning in Julia
Just ask Pedro Ecija, who took to the stage at the monthly Julia meetup to deliver his new work: Machine Learning in Julia: A Tragicomedy in Five Acts. Yes, you read that correctly! A quirky take on the dynamic programming language, Pedro laughs when asked about his inspiration for the piece.
He says: “It was frustrating at times. It felt like a Shakespearean work – there was tragedy and comedy in equal parts. I thought it would be a nice experience for people to come to the group and hear about the experiences I’ve had with Julia, and what I learned from it. I felt it would be helpful for people who want to start using Julia, and if you think about it – you learn better when you’re having fun.”
Joined by a host of Julia enthusiasts at Dublin’s Chaplin pub on Hawkins Street for the occasion, he adds: “When we have a laugh, we’re more likely to remember it rather than simply going through lines and lines of code.”
Along with Pedro, a host of Julia experts attended the meetup on the night. Held in the upstairs area of the Chaplin bar, the event was a relaxed affair where members shared learnings and their experience of using the programming language.
A friendly environment to network in, Kevin O’Brien – one of the organisers of the regular meetup – says of the occasion: “I learn a lot of what I need for my job from meetups. With computer languages, they’re developing all the time, and the meetups really help you to keep up-to-date with current best practice.”
He adds: “In this case, Julia is for numerical computing, so it mostly is focused towards mathematical machine learning and people who are used to math lab. It’s numerical and scientific computing.”
A data scientist and lecturer at the University of Limerick, Kevin notes that the meetup scene is vibrant around the country. He says: “I’m based in Limerick and we are looking at starting a Tech Limerick series of events to build up a tech scene there. There are grounds for great optimism down there.”