Weeknote WN202015 – pseudovacances

Aquesta setmana he pogut destinar temps a seguir el curs de Francesc Mas #nooc_telegram. M’ha servit no tan sols per entendre com fer bots amb telegram, sinó també i sobretot, per aprendre a fer servir Google Script. Molt interessant! I de passada he après una mica més de webhooks. Moltes gràcies Francesc!

He pogut també fer un taller de Viquipèdia (gràcies Amical Wikimedia) i assitir a un seminari de comunicació de la ciència en temps de confinament, de Duke University. Malgrat ser Setmana Santa, i el petit desànim d’estar “de vacances” confinats (i treballant), cal fer coses.

Imatge de la setmana

M’ha agradat aquesta imatge de l’AJC. Humor en temps de coronavirus i de confinament.

Què he vist a la xarxa?

Un interessant article de l’IHE és Academics’ Online Personas in a COVID-19-Disrupted World, que parla de com ara és el moment de posar en valor la marca personal com a professors.

The virus has disrupted so many universities’ research projects. Labs are inaccessible, travel for research has been halted and many decisions on grant applications are on hold. Some researchers who aren’t scrambling to provide online course experiences actually have more time than normal to prioritize other projects that have been on the back burner, such as building their online personas and communicating their research to external audiences. As communicators, you can be their partner by providing resources and support.

One such related activity is creating an individual website. For this project, it is helpful to have a model of some of the best practices that are being used by other savvy academics and experts who communicate their research and ideas effectively. An interesting reference point is the Thinkers50global ranking of management thinkers. The ranking consists of many academics and is touted as “the essential guide to which thinkers and which ideas matter now.” For an idea to matter, effective communications is essential.

Let us remember that in the midst of uncertainty is opportunity. The disruptions of today can serve as a call to action about the value of academics using digital communications to share their knowledge with the world, and communicators and marketers can play an important role in providing the support for academics to make this happen.

Lògicament estem fent docència en línia, i no es poden fer experiments als laboratoris, ara mateix. Per això és rellevant l’article de l’IHE How to Rethink Science Lab Classes

The rapid transition from college classrooms to online classes in the wake of COVID-19 has given faculty members little to no time for planning and preparation. Challenging pedagogical issues must still be addressed, particularly regarding the best way to educate undergraduates in online science laboratory courses. Science labs at the undergraduate level can be taught effectively online, however, with some modifications — and some of these modifications may be valuable even after academic life returns to normal.

Based on our discussion of this lab and other science labs, we have identified five objectives for online labs that are critical to any science laboratory experience and lend themselves well to online teaching. In fact, online education offers an opportunity to teach students frequently overlooked skills that are important for every scientific discipline.

  • Learn how to propose new scientific experiments
  • Learn how to review the literature and critically read peer-reviewed journals
  • Learn how to design complex research experiments
  • Learn how to analyze experimental data
  • Learn by teaching others


Un article del C&EN parla de la necessitat de posar a disposició de la gent de ciència les dades existents: Exploring chemical space: Can AI take us where no human has gone before?

Chemical space contains every possible chemical compound. It includes every drug and material we know and every one we’ll find in the future. It’s practically infinite and can be frustratingly complex. That’s why some chemists are turning to artificial intelligence: AI can explore chemical space faster than humans, and it might be able to find molecules that would elude even expert scientists. But as researchers work to build and refine these AI tools, many questions still remain about how AI can best help search chemical space and when AI will be able to assist the wider chemistry community.

Un altre article rellevant en el camp de la ciència i #artint és del Chemistry World: Algorithm can map scores of possible chemical transformations for any set of reactants

A chemoinformatics approach has been used to map 320 different ways to obtain amides from carboxylic acids and amines. The new exploration method can be applied to any set of reactants, opening many possibilities for manual or automated reaction discovery.

The structure and properties of pharmaceuticals and other important products are determined by chemical transformations, so reaction selection can influence how a candidate drug molecule will behave. Currently, a limited number of chemical transformations is used to produce most medicines. Amide coupling, which involves combining an amine and a carboxylic acid to form an amide bond, is very popular in chemical synthesis, being used in a quarter of the reactions reported in small-molecule pharmaceutical patents. But there are hundreds of other ways to connect these two common functional groups together, say Tim Cernak of the University of Michigan and his team.

He de mirar aqueset article: Hartree-Fock on a superconducting qubit quantum computer perquè és un bon exemple de química computacional fent servir ordinadors quàntics

As the search continues for useful applications of noisy intermediate scale quantum devices, variational simulations of fermionic systems remain one of the most promising directions. Here, we perform a series of quantum simulations of chemistry which involve twice the number of qubits and more than ten times the number of gates as the largest prior experiments. We model the binding energy of H6, H8, H10 and H12 chains as well as the isomerization of diazene. We also demonstrate error-mitigation strategies based on N-representability which dramatically improve the effective fidelity of our experiments. Our parameterized ansatz circuits realize the Givens rotation approach to free fermion evolution, which we variationally optimize to prepare the Hartree-Fock wavefunction. This ubiquitous algorithmic primitive corresponds to a rotation of the orbital basis and is required by many proposals for correlated simulations of molecules and Hubbard models. Because free fermion evolutions are classically tractable to simulate, yet still generate highly entangled states over the computational basis, we use these experiments to benchmark the performance of our hardware while establishing a foundation for scaling up more complex correlated quantum simulations of chemistry.

Llenguatges de programació (dèria)

Quan jo feia la tesi doctoral a la UAB, l agetn que es dedicava a la gestió feia servir el llenguatge COBOL, totalment diferent del nostre, el FORTRAN. Veig a COBOL, a 60-year-old computer language, is in the COVID-19 spotlight que es busca gent que hi sàpiga programar. Curiós.

Els tweets d’aquesta setmana