Data Science Hackathon Club Update

  • What we discussed on the first meeting (12/Nov):
  1. Google’s Deep Mind Explained! – Self Learning A.I.
  2. The first machine learning example tutorial (classification) 
  • What we discussed on the second meeting (26 Nov): linear model – part1
  1. Video lecture: linear model
  2. Tutorial problem: write your solution about house price prediction.
  • What we discussed on the third meeting (10 Dec, 11-12, G45): linear model – part2
    1. Video lecture: Gradient Descent, Logistic regression
    2. No practice session due to exam session

Club email list

Inaugural meeting of the Extreme Programming club

Today we met for the Extreme Programming Club for the first time and enjoyed discussing problem solving.

Meeting notes


We discussed the importance of programming practice, data structures, and algorithms. Plenty of exercises are available at

There you can even find a University of Reading Ranklist (so far two students *ever* participated).

Introducing and interactive solving of an easy problem

Firstly, Julian introduced the simple problem here:

Then we discussed a test harness to automatize the execution of the provided input/output tests to check the correctness of our results using a Bash script.

Then students worked in small groups to discuss the problem and sketch a solution. We then discussed the solution in a bigger group. We discussed the difference of using the data structures array vs. a dictionary to preserve the intermediate results of the computation and also about some performance issues.

Finally, we solved the problem using the programming language C.

Introducing problems for the home challenge

Julian introduced three problems of different complexity challenging students with different experience level.  These problems were:


Note that the hard problem is really hard to be resolved with a performing algorithm.  We briefly discussed the problem descriptions and organized small learning groups to support individual learning.

Next meetings

We discussed during the meeting the organization of subsequent meetings, which will take place Wed. 28th in G43 (likely to move to a different place from there).

About the club:

This is an extracurricular activity that fosters your programming skills and algorithmic thinking, and communication skills regarding programming. These capabilities are often key to yield high-profile jobs from, e.g., Silicon Valley companies like Google.

The club to which everyone – both, little or significant programming skills – is welcome, aims to:

  1. boost your programming confidence
  2. prepare you better for potential future jobs and programming competitions
  3. show that the algorithmic problem solving is fun!