Half of Retailers Unprepared for Christmas Fraud Frenzy

– Retailers hit by 20,000 fraud attempts, following swing towards digital holiday retail spend –
Thousands of British retailers and millions of shoppers are being targeted by fraudsters as the holiday shopping season is in a full swing according to a comprehensive study by retail and fraud experts at GBG – the global identity data specialist.

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SpotX Appoints Allan Welch To Strengthen Political Vertical

Political advertising veteran joins company following the launch of its political data group
SpotX, the leading global video advertising and monetization platform, announced the appointment of Allan Welch as its Director, Political & Government Affairs. Welch will be based in Washington D.C. and oversee the company’s political-focused clients.

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Alternatives to the Gradient Descent Algorithm

Gradient Descent has a problem of getting stuck in Local Minima. The following alternatives are available. The following is a summary of answers suggested on CrossValided, originally posted here. 
Source for picture: here
First answer
There are many optimization algorithms that operate on a fixed number of real values that are correlated (non-separable).

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Building a business around Machine Learning APIs

I got a variety of reactions on Twitter following my GigaOM piece on how Data Scientists work at automating themselves. One of them I want to discuss today is about building businesses on top / around Prediction APIs such as Google’s or BigML’s (a.k.a. machine learning APIs).

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U.S. Heavy Truck Sales up 3% Year-over-year in October

The following graph shows heavy truck sales since 1967 using data from the BEA. The dashed line is the October 2019 seasonally adjusted annual sales rate (SAAR).Heavy truck sales really collapsed during the great recession, falling to a low of 180 thousand in May 2009, on a seasonally adjusted annual rate basis (SAAR).

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Claims and Evidence: A Joke

The other day a friend posted the following old joke about the level of rigor that mathematicians usually require. (Disclaimer: if you take the joke as a serious claim about the standards of quality in the other fields referenced in the joke, it is an obviously unfair characterization of both astronomy and physics.)
A Mathematician, a Physicist, and an astronomer were travelling north by train.

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New Year’s Resolutions 2018

Hold me accountable
This year, I propose the following set of New Year’s Resolutions. I am posting this subset of my goals publically so you can hold me accountable. I’ll do a retrospective at the end of 2018, and try to keep this list updated with progress throughout the year. I’m using Trello to keep track in real time.

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Proof that 1/7 is a repeated decimal

This blog post serves as an exercise and solution to the following question: $latex frac{1}{7}=0.overline{142857}$ In plain English: is the fraction $latex frac{1}{7}$ a repeated decimal (0.142857142857142857…)? Recurring pattern How can we tackle such a problem? First note that we have to deal with a recurring pattern: a pattern that refers to itself.

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