hack day

I had a great time at dotastronomy NYC hack day, organized by Muench (Harvard). Foreman-Mackey and I (with help from Schwamb, Cooper, Taub) worked on a probabilistic analysis of exoplanet populations based on the Kepler objects of interest list. I wrote text, Foreman-Mackey wrote code, Cooper drew a graphical model, and Schwamb and Taub read papers. In parallel, many hacks happened. The most impressive was Schiminovich's 9-year-old son Theo's calculation of exoplanet transit lightcurves (including the secondary eclipse) in scratch. Theo went from not even knowing what an exoplanet is to doing this calculation in hours! Another impressive hack was Beaumont (Harvard), who hacked an OpenGL backend onto matplotlib, making the (notoriously slow but nice) plotting package outrageously fast for million-point plots. It was seriously impressive; I hope he pushes it to matplotlib development. There were many other nice hacks and a good time was had by all. Thanks to Muench, bitly, Seamless Astronomy, and Gorelick (bitly) for making it happen!

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