Sep 19, 2023
I've been fortunate to explore several European cities showcasing remnants of Roman civilization, such as the Colosseum in Rome, the Library of Celsus in Turkey, the Theater of Merida, and the city of Augusta Raurica. However, Pompeii undoubtedly stands on a different league altogether. Last weekend I had the opportunity to go there and it was a truly fascinating experience
Since this Roman city was frozen in time after the catastrophic eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD and it took multiple to centuries to discover it, the extend of its preservation is remarkable. It's surreal to find yourself walking along the original Roman streets, where once the horse powered carriages use to ride. These narrow, cobblestone streets are flanked by impeccably preserved remnants of residences, stores, and public structures, such as the Amphitheater, the Forum, and even the impressive Tower of Mercury, which offers a panoramic view of the vast archaeological park.
Quite a magical place!.
Jun 15, 2023
May 3, 2023
Apr 18, 2023
Apr 10, 2023
A couple of days ago, as I was strolling near the lake, my eyes caught this intesting sight. The scenery, which featured the lake and the mountains in the backdrop, with the bright yellow tullips on the stage. I couldn't help but think that it would make an nice composition for a photo, such as the one I attempted above
Mar 13, 2023
One of the advantages of the EPFL campus is its location relatively close to lake Leman. Sometimes the landscapes that can be seen in the background are really spectacular and this was indeed hat happened last week: I was on the esplanade walking towards the library when I noticed in the background this composition that I thought definitely deserved a photo and a post about it.
Feb 26, 2023
Jan 24, 2023
Dec 30, 2022
Sep 19, 2022
Sep 2, 2022
Feb 9, 2022
Jan 20, 2022
Jan 8, 2022
Jan 1, 2022
On this first day of 2022 I had the opportunity to enjoy this beautiful sunset on the shore of Lake Geneva, with the church of Morges in the background. I felt at that moment that in spite of the difficult beginning of 2022, I have hope that everything will be better and that it will be a great year!
Nov 7, 2021
May 11, 2021
Dec 06, 2020
Nov 17, 2020
The number of cases of covid-19 in Switzerland increased dramatically in November, reaching more than 10,000 at the beginning of the month which forced the cantonal and federal authorities to take strict measures to prevent contagion.
One of the main differences with respect to the wave that occurred during the spring time, is that the number of hospitalizations has increased significantly as can be seen in the graph above. We hope that those measures taken by the authorities will help to control this new peak. Of course everybody has to their part: #wearamask.
Aug 26, 2020
Both in Basel city and Zurich it is required to wear facemask with the objective to reduce the COVID-19 transmission. The country flattened the curve but as soon as it began to reopen, the cases started to up again. The cantons of Geneva, Vaud and Zurich are the most affected as it can be observed in the previous graph.
Jun 19, 2020
There have been a some articles in the news lately discusing how the current occupant of the white house is losing ground against his democractic rival including: The remarkable collapse of Donald Trumps polling numbers and States that Trump won easily in 2016 are looking tight for him in November. The news are not surprising, giving the horrible COVID-19 numbers on the USA, its ecnomic impact and the wave of protest againts police brutaliy. The data from realclearpolitics seems to confirm this trend.
Feb 02, 2020
The US democratic primaries are around the corner with the first state voting next monday. I was curious how the Google Search Trends in the last 7 days, reflect on each one of top tier candidates. Bernie Sanders is clearly winning on that “interest” field. Interesting to see what will happen in the actual Iowa caucuses.
May 07, 2019
On the 25th of April, Joe Biden announced he was joining the crowded democratic primaries race. The aggregate polls show an interesting trend. Even before his announcement he was leading the polls, but there was a clear but in his numbers afterwards. It's interesting to see what will happen in the months ahead. Will those trends continue and the main race is going to be between him a Bernie Sanders? or will there be another candaidate getting into the top spot?. Time will tell.
Feb 28, 2019
The official FX Data from the bank of england site, shows the changes related to the whole Brexit process. Yesterday it was reported that MPs have voted overwhelmingly to hold Theresa May to her commitment to give them a vote on delaying Brexit if her withdrawal agreement fails to win a majority within the next two weeks.. It's interesting how everytime Brexit seems to be further away ... the better the British currency performs.
Nov 28, 2018
Oct 14, 2018
May 16, 2018
I always believed one the main problems with the presidential elections in Colombia, held every four years, is the timing: They always coincide with the Football World Cup!. Football is an extremely popular sport in the country and when the national squad qualifies to the tournament, the country turns the attention away from everthing except to this event.
The previous graph generated with Google Trends Search Data, relate to this point at least on the online sphere: The Colombian people are more interested in searching information about topics regarding the World Cup, than topics related to the presidentials.
The first round of this election will take on the 27th May and the second round on the 17th June (the World Cup starts on the 14th). Just saying ...
Jan 30, 2018
A couple of weeks ago an article in business insider stated that Apple’s iOS was losing market share in Europe's four largest markets (Great Britain, France, Italy, and Spain) besides Japan. I haven't checked the mobile global market in a while and today checking the starcounter stats, Android is clearly dominant on a global scale. It's true Android has some issues, including the well known fragmentation, but I still prefer the flexibility of this OS over the iOS one.
Aug 13, 2017
Google Search trends show vue.js has been the post popular framework in the last 12 months. Vue.js is self described as "a progressive framework for building user interfaces. Unlike other monolithic frameworks, Vue is designed from the ground up to be incrementally adoptable". I gave it a go and it's quite interesting.
May 31, 2017
When Theresa May announced her intention to seek a general election back in April, the conservative lead on the polls over labor was around 21%. As you can see in the graph above this lead has been shrinking over time. It's very interesting to see what is going to happen in this election next month.
Apr 23, 2017
Mar 10, 2017
A couple of days ago, on march th 8th, it was the international women's day. I was chatting with some family member about this day should exist at all (there were arguing that the day should be everyday). I was checking the pay gap between Man in Women in the European countries and I think there is still a reason to celebrate this day.
Feb 25, 2017
Wikipedia provides an article containing a list of the top 100 sites in the world in terms of traffic, using Alexa and SimilarWeb as sources. The chart above shows the type of sites count based on that list and Search Engines is the top category by far. Now, it's interesting to see how the main reason of this finding is due to the massive popularity of Google around the world: Its localized version on all this countries make it to the top 100 list:
Feb 20, 2017
Jan 24, 2017
The polls aggregates from Real Clear Politics shows that Trump opinion has never been more favorable than unfavorable. In fact it has been reported he assumed office as one of the most unpopular presidents in the modern history. The trend show it's again down after a short increase following the election.
Jan 17, 2017
Wikipedia has a useful page with a lot of stats about Switzerland Statistics. The chart above shows the number of live births per year. Very relevant information today.
Dec 29, 2016
Looking at the final 2016 US presidential election results, it's remarkable how bad trump lost in California. 8.7 million vs 4.4 million votes. It's not surprising that on the days after the election the #calexit hashtag started to trend. Clinton won the popular vote, so many Americans will feel underrepresented based on the electoral college system they have in place, but nowhere this is more dramatic than in California.
Nov 15, 2016
Not surprising. The earth temperature measured by NASA in September was the highest ever warmest month. http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/tabledata_v3/GLB.Ts.txt. This follows the same pattern as every month this year. The Paris climate agreement clearly recognized the wide impact of Global Warming, but with the recent results of the US Elections, this issue needs to be raised all the time.
Nov 9, 2016
This morning I woke up very early feeling a bit uneasy. I started to follow the live US presidential transmission and then slowly, it began to be clear that the Republican nominee was going to win. I was mentioning a couple of days ago, the main danger with this outcome is that the nationalists groups might feel empowered to spread and promote their hate speech. I'm really hoping this won't happen. And it was definitely a complete poll miss. A dangerous one.
Nov 7, 2016
Alright, the last 4 way presidential polls still put Clinton slightly ahead. Crossing the fingers the lead will hold. Yesterday the FBI director sent a letter clarifying there was nothing new in the emails from last week, so I hope the voters in the US will be able to compare the flaws of the democratic nominee against the real sexists, racist, protectionist and xenophobic positions of the Republican nominee.
Nov 1, 2016
I haven't checked the Mobile OS market share in a while. According to net market share Android has 68.5% and IOS has 25.8% in the last month. I'm curious how this will be affected with the whole Note 7 issue. But still it's impressive the growth compared with just 2 years ago.
Oct 30, 2016
Yesterday I saw the excellent documentary "Hate Rising" (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gOsRktPBNhI), a film where the journalist Jorge Ramos, explores how the current US election has empowered white nationalist groups, leading to a rise of hate in that country, including attacks to minority communities. This documentary brought memories back of my mother because I'm sure she would be extremely disappointed. Before she got sick and passed away, she worked with the Girl Scouts of the USA, setting up programs to make the Latino girls proud of their heritage and to help all the girls to feel equal and part of one nation.
"The most important task in my job is to make one world, It's important for the Latinos and it's important for the American people.", my mom used to say. I have been following close the US presidential elections, not only because I have many relatives and friends living in that country, but also because I truly believe, its outcome will have important repercussions around the world.
If you don't want to live in a country where hate is normalized, where sexist and misogynist views come from the top of the leadership and where your liberties and rights get curtailed under the "law and order" sophism, please vote on this binary election!. As an European I followed the Brexit vote closely because I still think the European Union project has brought a lot stability and peace to this continent and I thought it would be bad for my adoptive Irish nation. As you know the yes camp won mainly on “immigration control” grounds and unfortunately the attacks against immigrants communities increased immediately after the vote. The future of this nation looks gloomy, since most of the promises of the yes camp where not attainable.
On the other hand as a Colombian I was extremely hopeful about the referendum to accept the peace agreements signed in Cuba to put an end to the oldest civil conflict in the Latino American continent. For the first time of the civil war the two sides were serious about ending the conflict and didn’t use the talks as an strategy of war.It pained my heart to see how a disinformation campaign orchestrated by the opposition, helped the No camp to obtain victory. Now this conflict affecting mainly the minority populations living in the most remote and poorest parts of the country, is in a very dangerous stalemated situation.
As an immigrant on the other side of the atlantic, I'm really hoping the people appearing in Jorge’s documentary are a minority and that they don't reflect the United States population overall. And I really hope the outcome of the US presidential election will reflect this statement.
So please don't fall into the fear trap and go out and vote to make a stand against the people attacking the diversity that’s so needed in this world.
Oct 29, 2016
I have been using Python for many years and I recognize how powerful it is with libraries like Pandas and Scikit-Learn for Data Science. In a previous I have the opportunity to use R, but I haven't touched it in a while. I was curious to see what is the interest between in R vs Python in the Google Search Trends and you can see the graph above plotted with this data source.
Oct 17, 2016
Last weekend I finish converting the FX calculator I developed during my career break to React.js. I have briefly touched some code at work but I wanted to get my hands dirty and understand better the advantages and the challenges of this library.
Oct 14, 2016
FiveThirtyEight, the interesting site focused on opinion poll analysis, has become of the most quoted sites in political news. A couple of days ago the published an interesting article on how the USA election electoral map would look like if only women voted, based on their polls models. It's interesting on how it would be landslide defeat of Donald Trump!
Sep 29, 2016
According to Nielsen, the presidential debates number of viewers are out, for the first debate between Trump and Clinton, and this was the most viewed debate in the history of the presidential debates (84 Million viewers). The second closest was the one that happened in 1980 between Reagan and Carter.
Sep 6, 2016
I haven't checked the global search engines market share in a while because clearly Google dominates in almost every country but yesterday I heard an interesting podcast on BBC about the power of Google and I was curious about the position of the 2nd and 3rd players. The chart above is generated with data from startcounter.
Sep 2, 2016
Alexa and Similar web rank Wikipedia as the 7th and 9th most visited site on the web, so the visit statistics produced by the foundation are a good proxy for getting data on the most popular platforms on the web. The previous chart shows the visits by OS family. As you can observe there windows 7 is the most popular desktop OS, but the mobile OS (Android and IOS) are responsible for almost 40% of the visits to those sites.
Aug 16, 2016
Aug 3, 2016
Aug 2, 2016
Last weekend we did a long weekend trip with my girlfriend to the Ticino region of Switzerland, staying in Locarno. I wasn't aware but the Locarno Film Festival was starting this week and part of this event was a preview showing of a movie on Sunday night open to the public.
The organizers decided to honor Bud Spencer, one of the classic italian actors from the 70's in the action-comedy genre who passed away earlier this year. They featured <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/They_Call_Me_Trinity", one of the best examples of the "Spaguetti Westerns" target="_blank">Lo chiamavano Trinità. I really enjoyed this movie!. It brought really nice memories since the movies featuring the duo Bud Spencer / Terence Hill were one of my grandpa's favorites.
Jul 28, 2016
This morning I was reading in the fivethirtyeight site an interesting section dedicated to the US elections. They try to predict who will win the election based on the polls and historic data. They have been very accurate in the past so there are definitely an interesting source.
One of the articles linked on this site was a post titled why obama might be trump's biggest challenge where they discussed how president Obama is enjoying a high approval rate. The chart above is generated with the >>>Real Politics>"http://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/other/president_obama_job_approval-1044.html" data they were mentioning in the post.
Jul 21, 2016
Jul 17, 2016
Jun 23, 2016
Browser usage according to the Wikipeida article on browser usage and the global stats reported by W3Counter. Not surprising Chrome is the most popular browser today and fortunately IE is in a complete decline.
May 17, 2016
May 15, 2016
Mar 30, 2016
Last night when I was reading about the EgyptAir hijacking I was thinking that fortunately these type of incidents are now very rare. I remember when I was a kid that these was one of the cliches in the American movies of the 80's (ie. Delta Force), but with the tough security measures in place in most of the airports, this doesn't happen as often.
Wikipedia has a detailed compilation on the aircraft hijacking incidents and there is defintively a decrease compared to the peak on the 70s.
Mar 29, 2016
Mar 7, 2016
Asylum is defined as the protection granted by a nation to someone who has left their native country as a political refugee, mainly for fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group, or political opinion. The raging conflict in Syria there has been sharp increase in the number of refugees coming to Europe.
The last quarterly data report by Eurostat demonstrates this upwards trend. Germany and Sweden have been the countries who have welcomed the highest number of asylum seekers.
Mar 4, 2016
Feb 26, 2016
The last episode of the excellent show Last Week tonight from John Oliver dealt with a very contentious issue in the US: <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DRauXXz6t0Y". I really like the approach that he took on this matter, acknowledging there are different positions on this topic, but hammering the "hypocritical" laws that under the umbrella of protecting the "Women's health" target="_blank">The abortion laws crear barriers for people who need this medical procedure and unfortunately don't have the money to go somewhere else.
The next map shows the US states that had enacted laws to force the women requiring an abortion for see an ultrasound on the unwanted pregnancy:
Feb 23, 2016
Yesterday at the office we were discussing the issue about the possibility of the UK leaving the European Union. Actually we wrote in our company blog, what this brexit would mean for European workers, some time ago. But with all this brexit discussion, we forget the UK is actually one of the oldest members of the European Union (1973).
You can check this map in detail here
Feb 10, 2016
It is hard to assess what are the most popular programming languages because there are multiple ways to measure them but none of the are perfect (ie. Repositories, lines of code, occurrences in job offers, etc). For example if work with embedded systems C is very popular, but if you work on the web the history is very different.
One interesting measurement of popularity of a language are the questions related to the language. Stack Overflow features questions and answers on a wide range of programming languages and compiles a list of the most popular tags with total, today and this week breakdown.
This data is a nice proxy on how popular are the different programming languages.
Feb 6, 2016
Last night I was reading in Business Insider the headline about how Bernie Sanders just melted away a 30-point Hillary Clinton lead in a new poll, related to the US presidential elections. Wikipedia has a useful article where they track the different polls for both parties. The results of those polls are reported here on that page: Democratic Primaries.
It's true that the last poll conducted by the Quinnipiac University shows a preference of: Clinton: 44% and Sanders 42%, and with a 4.5% margin of error, they are virtually tied. There is even a newer one performed by "Reuter/Ipsos" showing a similar trend: Clinton: 48% and Sanders 45% (with a 5% margin of error).
It's fascinating to see how this candidate without any of the infamous [superpacs](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Political_action_committee#Super_PACs) behind him has been able to attrack so much attention and how it has become a real contender in the US 2016 presidential elections.
Jan 27, 2016
Yesterday I was reading the news about the Apple: On Tuesday they reported the financial results of their fiscal first quarter. One of the conclusions from this event is that even if they had records on profits, on the other hand the iPhone sales rose less than 1 percent from a year earlier.
I was checking the Mobile & Table operating systems market share data published by netmarketshare.net and this trend downwards is clear:
I never owned an iPhone. I really like the quality of the hardware and software produced by this company (In fact I'm writing this post on a macbook air), but I don't like the closed restricted ecosystem associated to their business model. It's refreshing to see so many different android devices on the market.