Category Archives: Uncategorized

Remembering Michael

It has been a year since the tragic event of September 2017. We now know what happened, and it is a tremendously sad story of undiagnosed type 1 diabetes. This summer at MSR Michael was still very present in our … Continue reading

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Michael B. Cohen

This is an incredibly difficult post to write. Michael Benjamin Cohen, an amazing student and person passed away this week in Berkeley. Below is the official MSR statement (where he spent the summer together with many friends) and some personal … Continue reading

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Prospective graduate student? Consider University of Washington!

This post is targeted at prospective graduate students, especially foreigners from outside the US, who are primarily interested in optimization but also have a taste for probability theory (basically readers of this blog!). As a foreigner myself I remember that … Continue reading

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Guest post by Miklos Racz: The fundamental limits of dimension estimation in random geometric graphs

This post is a continuation of the previous one, where we explored how to detect geometry in a random geometric graph. We now consider the other side of the coin: when is it impossible to detect geometry and what are … Continue reading

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COLT 2016 videos

This is a one-sentence post for the set {blog followers}\{Twitter/Facebook followers} to advertise the COLT 2016 videos which have just been posted!

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AlphaGo is born

Google DeepMind is making the front page of Nature (again) with a new AI for Go, named AlphaGo (see also this Nature youtube video). Computer Go is a notoriously difficult problem, and up to now AI were faring very badly … Continue reading

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One year of blogging

A year ago I started this blog. I did not expect this experience to be so rewarding. For instance seeing weeks after the weeks the growing interest for the optimization posts gave me the stamina to pursue this endaveor to … Continue reading

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COLT 2013/ICML 2013 videos

The videos for COLT 2013 were just published on The videos for ICML 2013 are also available on

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Two summer readings on Big Data and Deep Learning

This is the first (short) post dedicated to the Big Data program of the Simons Institute. We received from the program organizer Mike Jordan our first reading assignment which is a report published by the National Academy of Sciences on the “Frontiers in Massive … Continue reading

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ICML and isotropic position of a convex body

ICML 2013 just finished a few days ago. The presentation that inspired me the most was the invited talk by Santosh Vempala. He talked about the relations between sampling, optimization, integration, learning, and rounding. I strongly recommend Vempala’s short survey … Continue reading

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