Nabin K. Malakar, Ph.D.

I am a computational physicist working on societal applications of machine-learning techniques.

Research Links

My research interests span multi-disciplinary fields involving Societal applications of Machine Learning, Decision-theoretic approach to automated Experimental Design, Bayesian statistical data analysis and signal processing.


Interested about the picture? Autonomous experimental design allows us to answer the question of where to take the measurements. More about it is here...


I addition to the research, I also like to hike, bike, read and play with water color.

Thanks for the visit. Please feel free to visit my Weblogs.

Welcome to Please visit again.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

What do Teachers Make?

They make the difference!

Two videos:

This one is very strong:

Sunday, July 24, 2011

RoboSub 2011

Robosub ( is a competition involving Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUV). The challenge is to overcome the obstacles and perform the tasks without human interventions.
The winners are:

1st Place: ETS Team SONIA (awarded $7,000)
2nd Place : Cornell University (awarded $4000)
3rd Place: University of Florida (awarded $3,000)
4th Place : Reykjavik University (awarded $2,000)
5th Place: University of Maryland (awarded $500)
6th Place: University of Rhode Island (awarded $500)
7th Place: United States Naval Academy
8th Place: North Carolina State University

Mayor's Cup for Community Outreach: Carl Hayden High School (awarded $1,000)
Second Chance Award: University of Central Florida (awarded $1,000)
Outstanding Technical Mentorship: University of Maryland ($500)
Hardware is Hard Award: Utah State University (awarded $500)
Innovation on a Budget Award: Mesa College (awarded $500)
Best Paper Award: Kyushu University (awarded $500)
The video:

The team describes the challenges and the experience during the competition:

 A great collection of their papers etc:

Monday, July 11, 2011

Attending MaxEnt 2011 in Waterloo, Canada

I am attending MaxEnt 2011 in Waterloo Canada.

Travelling to Waterloo was slightly involved because of the few reasons. The first one was the visa issues. At least, I am thankful that it arrived a week before my departure. Few of my friends could not make it due to the delays. Another one was that the airfare to the nearby airport was  very very expensive.  So, I travelled via Toronto (about an hour drive).
However, the best part of the airport was that the the wifi was free. So, I quickly joined the network and started calling people while waiting for my shuttle to arrive.

Here, in MaxEnt 2011, I will be presenting my work on collaborative experimental design by two intelligent agents.  The abstract of the talk can be found here ...(PDF!)
The work is the result of the overall successful (past) developments (by the Giants) of the Bayesian method of inference, experimental design techniques and the order-theoretic approach to questions. 
We view the intelligent agents as the question asking machines and we want them to be able to design experiments in an automated fashion to achieve the given goal.  Here we illustrate how the joint entropy turns out to be the useful quantity when we want the intelligent agents to efficiently learn together.
The details are in paper, which will be put in arxiv soon.

On the side notes:

Google detected right away that I "moved" to canada. So they wanted to offer

yahoo music does not seem to work!

Pandora does not work.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Time Calls, once again

Today's Nepal is what was supposed to be the "new nepal" as was envisioned by the people who took bullet(s) in their chest a few years ago.   Those who survived might have a better answer to whether they took the bullet(s) for this. This is econo-political issue, which I am not much educated about, as a physicist.  It turns out that there are a lot of matters which I am not well educated about. Life is a journey where we learn. Either by doing or imitating what others did in similar instances: by following examples.

I wanted to talk about an issue that has been pointed out in a recent presentation by a Journalist (Prem Baniya). Everyone knows how corrupt the elements of the society has been through during these volatile period. Definitely, it needs a huge clean-out operation. One can wonder whether it is possible or simply blame it to the "bad politics" over the cup of the tea.  However, this time, the fingers has been pointed to the professionals; Those who were used to be set as respected examples.

The claim is that the associated professors take the paid leave on benefits, go aboard. And, do not return.
It turns out that those who took the benefits enjoy about $20-25 thousands over the five year period. Coming overseas on the paid leave is some kind of commitment that they had when they left the country.

It is the time to set an example.  As always, it is a call for Physicists. They have been good at setting examples or inspiring  generations.
The time calls once again.
Can the group of Nepali Physicists, who enjoyed the benefits and who have now decided not to go back, pay back what they have been blamed for?

If no one dares to come clean, the examples will never be set the same way.


Thursday, May 19, 2011

Miss-pronounced Names and Excuses
While doing the Teaching Assistantship (TA) duties, I always advertised my name.
"My Name is this and you can Google me!" and I wrote them with big letters on the corner of the board. Corner because it will stay till the end of the class, just in case. And I always encouraged them to call me by name... instead of "excuse me!".

I also gave them semester specific Email address such as "". That way I could filter the Emails according to the semesters/courses.

I always try to relate the name of the students with their faces. Sometimes I mis-pronounce the names of the students. It is a weird situation, you can read it from their face, but I would tell them immediately that "If I mis-pronounced your name once, I allow you to mis-pronounce my name three times". They seemed happy with that deal.
Moreover, Knowing each other by name is good for future networking too. They  grow up fast and become your friend.

Selling  your name, even the first few letters of your name, is better than the situations when  students looking for you asks others with  your description such as the TA with the weird cap, sandle, or may be BIG nose etc. 

Have you ever mis-pronounced names? Any interesting stories that you faced with names?