Alex C. Viana's blog

  1. What The F*ck Is The Internet Vol. 1: Bits, Encoding, Packets, and Protocols

    Fri 17 March 2017

    I organize a weekly series of tech talks at work. It's a good way to stay up on what technologies people are using in and out of the office. Recently, I've started presenting at these talks on various computer science fundamentals I was never exposed to in college ...

  2. Special Methods in Python

    Wed 15 March 2017

    This post is intended to accompany a presentation I gave to the Baltimore Python Meetup on Wednesday, March 15th 2017.

    This post assumes some familiarity with object-oriented programming as it relates to classes and inheritance in Python.

    The purpose of this post is to explore Python's special methods, also ...

  3. Setting Up Pelican with GitHub Pages

    Sat 25 February 2017

    This is a short post about how I set up my pelican project to deploy with GitHub pages. Specifically, I want to version control both the output static pages that are being served as well as the source Markdown files used to generate the output. What I ended up isn ...

  4. Writing a FITS File Bigger Than Your Memory

    Tue 08 April 2014

    I've listed Erik Bray(GitHub) as a co-author on this post. Erik is one of the PyFITS developers and this post was born out of an email chain where he explained most of what follows to me, several times.

    "I’ve always thought that one of the the great ...

  5. Working with NumPy Arrays and SQL

    Mon 07 April 2014

    Lately I've been doing a lot (millions) of calculations involving small NumPy arrays of HST PSFs. Naturally, I wanted to save the output of these calculations to for later analysis. I put all the results in a MySQL database so I could easily select subsets of the data for ...

  6. Fitting 2D Gaussians with agpy

    Thu 30 January 2014

    Update 01/30/2014: Adam has split his gaussfitter code off into it's own GitHub repository here ("PR's Welcome!"). This removes some dependencies and changes the import statement but as of right now everything else is the same. I've maintained the old links to the original agpy ...

  7. Faster File Existence Testing with Sets

    Sun 19 January 2014

    It's Time to Think about Performance

    Lately at work I've been thinking a lot about the performance of my code. In the past most of my work fell into one of two performance categories: (roughly) overnight or (roughly) right now. In either case I didn't really care ...

  8. 2014 Summer Internship Opportunity

    Thu 16 January 2014

    The Moving Target Pipeline group at the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) in Baltimore, Maryland seeks a graduate or undergraduate student for a paid summer internship through the Institute's Space Astronomy Summer Program (SASP). The intern will work with our group to develop, test, and run our software pipeline ...

  9. Guilty As Charged

    Thu 19 December 2013

    Earlier this month the wonderful Randall Munroe at XKCD posted this great strip poking fun at the decrease in commit message quality as a project ages.

    Oops, something broke.

    As the meme goes, "nailed it".

    Oops, something broke.

    (I did finally get everything to work BTW.)

  10. That Time I Made a Metaclass

    Wed 04 December 2013

    "If you don't know what a metaclass is you don't need to use one."
    - David Beazley

    I was shooting some messages back and forth this morning with some current and former coworkers on Twitter on the topic of Python Metaclasses. One coworker said metaclasses was something he'd ...

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