Updates and Additions / by Callum Lamont

Just a quick update from the last post. The phone is working fine, though the sliver in time in which it was sans-case was enough to render a few scratches on the back, much to my dismay. It looks like Android and I should get along just fine, but I have noticed a lack of seamlessness inherent in some operations. This ain’t enough to drive me back to an iPhone as of yet, but it highlights the point that some sacrifices will have to be made. The camera is also holding up strong, though I still need to get a case and a new lens. I might have underestimated the range and number of variables which need to be factored into this decision but I’ve got a few ideas scribbled on the whiteboard. The hope is that owning a camera will prompt me to further explore London (and possibly elsewhere in the UK.. possibly). So it's likely now that the avid reader can be exposed to new areas of this great city only moments behind my own experience. On this note, I’ll be throwing up my non-trashable efforts on flickr. The highlights of this will then ultimately trickle down to the snaps page on this website. With the basics of photography starting to get pinned down, it's about time to start improving my competence with RAW image editing, just to make these shots really pop. 

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While we're rambling on the topic of creative endeavours, I've recently been exploring the interesting possibilities of Google's DeepDream,  which is essentially some code which manipulates a neural network trained for image classification to generate art. The concept of neural networks for artificial intelligence is gaining recognition within the general public, even if the underlying concept remains alien. What should be more widely understood is how the nature of its operation inherently obfuscates how it achieves its strong performance as a machine learning technique. The initial goal of DeepDream was to provide a way to visualise what the network was doing behind the scenes. It just so happens that it's also possible to render images in some especially psychedelic ways. I'm hoping to write something a bit more detailed in the future on these issues, as they become especially concerning once it becomes standard protocol to apply these techniques for military or healthcare interventions, where erroneous behaviour could cut short countless lives. In the meantime you can likely expect numerous selfies popping up of me looking slightly out-of-this-world.