StanCon Cambridge developer meeting opportunities

These two topics overlap and I’d suggest we also join the sparse matrices discussion @avehtari mentioned.

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To echo what @jonah mentioned two weeks ago, I wonder what activities can be arranged for people who won’t be in dev meeting, 2 hours is a long gap in the middle of the day.

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In Helsinki, many people attending the tutorials wished for longer breaks without any organized activities so that they can either experiment with what they learned in the morning or rest so that they are able to learn more in the afternoon. Thus this 2 hour break is intentional and it’s just the developers who have to suffer and manage without a longer break.

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Yay! Im in!

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I offered to help Aki with arranging these. Below are polls for each developer block mentioned. If you are interested in attending any of the developer meetings leave the dates you are available so we can get space accordingly!

If you can attend any day feel free to check-off all 4 days

@breckbaldwin once we have the dates that are best for everyone who do we contact to either see which rooms are free or reserve rooms?

Also, I kind of like the idea of making these meetings open. It could be a good opportunity to get new developers!

Thinking about this more, how would people feel about a “new devs” block? I kind of like the idea of collecting a bunch of small PRs across our packages and helping setup people who are interested in contributing.

Bayesplot

  • Tuesday (August 20)
  • Wednesday (August 21)
  • Thursday (August 22)
  • Friday (August 23)

0 voters

loo

  • Tuesday (August 20)
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  • Friday (August 23)

0 voters

projpred

  • Tuesday (August 20)
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  • Thursday (August 22)
  • Friday (August 23)

0 voters

Laplace for GLVMs (and Kinsol Solver)

  • Tuesday (August 20)
  • Wednesday (August 21)
  • Thursday (August 22)
  • Friday (August 23)

0 voters

Sparse Matrices

  • Tuesday (August 20)
  • Wednesday (August 21)
  • Thursday (August 22)
  • Friday (August 23)

0 voters

Parallelization / Optimization

  • Tuesday (August 20)
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0 voters

tidyverse had dev day with Hadley ringing a gong every time a PR was merged

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Yes my idea is v much inspired by that! They had a new dev event at a Chicago SatRday that went very well!

Surely Cambridge has a gong around somewhere we can borrow…

One thing I’d like to discuss wrt this is our memory model. I made a branch of stan-math which has a C++20 Allocator concept compliant allocator in it. (mostly stolen inspired by Eigen and Facebook’s folly). So instead of using raw pointers like vari** we can use something like

std::vector<vari, chainable_allocator<vari>> adjARef_;

I think we can take this idea a step further by creating a pool of stack allocators, where we have a number of allocators equal to the number of threads available. I think we could do this by using the Bloomberg style of dynamic polymorphic allocator in the initializer. So something like

std::vector<vari> adjARef_;
// In the initialization list
adjARef_(A.vi(), pooled_stack_allocators<vari>)

Then the pooled_stack_allocator gives a stack allocator for vari to adjARef_.

I think that makes sense? Though we should probably discuss this somewhere else

I believe there are plenty of rooms. I have scheduled 2hrs of dev time Tues/Wed, 1 hr on Friday. I was thinking of a general community meeting Thursday for an hour as well. Schedules up today/tomorrow.

Breck

We spoke yesterday about have a short discussion about the posterior database as well. I do not know where that would fit. @avehtari may have an idea?

A new topic to add: moderation of Discourse forums.

We’ve been getting a lot of spam recently. We could use volunteers to help moderate the forums. It’d be a good time to discuss what guidelines we need and what settings we can change through the Discourse interface. (cc: @breckbaldwin, @seantalts)

Does flagging the spam posts help in any non-negligible way? I see that it removes the post for me, dont know if it hides it for other too.

Yes, it does! Thank you!!! (to you and Dan Simpson and whoever has been flagging posts actively)

We have a lot of flags we can set, though. That might help cut down the problem a little bit.

Hello to all the jetlagged folk in Cambridge (it it’s surroundings).

Is there a schedule for these meetings so that I (and other unfortunates who aren’t physically present) can join?

Dev meetings as listed on the schedule, they are setup to encourage them to go long into breaks/lunch.
Tues/Wed
11:30am for an hour abutting Lunch
3:30pm for an hour, abutting end of day/happy hour
Friday 1-2pm but that is more constrained.

Setting up hangouts makes sense. I don’t have the cycles to make it happen.

Breck

The schedule doesn’t list the topics being discussed at each meeting. Can someone please update that?

(Edit: “someone” is probably @seantalts. Tagging because everyone’s probably horribly jetlagged.)

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I would like to see progress on this. @yuling is one relevant person.

Breck

I think Aki is running these.

@avehtari do you have a plan?

@Stevo15025 made a poll for the topics. I just noticed that the poll required to click Vote for each topic separately and it was not enough to click vote below the last topic I chose. I hope others have not made the same mistake, but it is likely as the last topics have much more votes. Please check your votes and we can then assign the topics first for certain dates. Also please vote if you want to participate via video. The topics with more 4+ people will have priority in scheduling a fixed time and the topics with less people can be more ad-hoc.