• Blog now sporting a new winter coat with tags

    Just finished updating the blog with a couple of new features. The main one is tags for posts, based on this guide by Christian Specht. Because Jekyll is a static site generator it can be difficult to generate dynamic pages such as tag pages on the fly. The solution I...


  • What can we learn from the history of physics publications?

    A paper published in Nature last week took a data driven approach to the history of physical science, setting itself the grand challenge of establishing how we define our subject. By looking at the publishing and citation history of physics papers (both within and outside explicit physics journals) they go...


  • Topic modelling No.10's speeches

    If you just want to play with pretty interactive things, scroll down and click on the image. Once you’ve finished, come back and humour me by reading the rest Computational text analysis is a rapidly growing field of research that promises to extract meaningful information from one of the most...


  • Educating undergraduates, a guide by Roger Blin-Stoyle

    Last Friday was my first day at Sussex University, and my first appointment was a 2 hour lecture on becoming an Associate Tutor. All postgraduate students in the school have the opportunity to become tutors, whose duties involve helping in workshops, laboratories, and with marking. However before getting stuck in...


  • Download D3 vis using SVG crowbar

    You can find D3 almost everywhere on the web now, and often you’ll want to grab a visualisation to use elsewhere. In particular, you may want to capture a particular state of an interactive visualisation after playing with some parameters. Since it’s not an image per se, you can’t just...


  • How to build a galaxy, #1

    In just two weeks I’ll begin my Ph.D., and after attending the STFC summer school program last week I’m now feeling very inspired and eager to start. In the run up I thought it would be quite fun (?) to write a few short posts on some of the work...


  • Tweets, Runs and the Minnesota Vikings

    A couple of weeks ago some colleagues and I published a post on the Bank of England’s independent blog ‘Bank Underground’, which acts as a forum for staff to post novel views that don’t necessarily align with the Bank’s official line. The post describes a project undertaken in the run...


  • Creating dynamic UI components in Shiny

    I was recently trying to implement some dynamic functionality in Shiny. The aim was to have a set number of UI elements load depending on a numeric value entered by the user, and then use the data input in these elements later in the app. I found the following thread...