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Creative Thinking

Creative Thinking

While Tim, Neil, and I were getting TradeLlama's core vision together, I was also looking to upgrade my main computer. This would be my official TradeLlama laptop, where the Llama magic was going to take shape. After lots of research, I landed on an Asus laptop with exactly the specs I wanted.

I don't run Windows on my computers; instead, I use Linux. My preferred Linux distribution is Fedora. Getting all the software I use on my new laptop was going well until I looked into the ASUS Battery Health Charging. It wasn't a surprise that it only runs on Windows; what was a surprise was that I could not find an open-source Linux alternative.

Unplug.

Nowadays many laptop and tablet manufacturers provide software that regulates your battery charge, this helps prolong the battery's lifespan. The short version of it is that, after having your device plugged in all day long, for a couple of years, the battery won't hold as much of a charge as it once did. This applies to humans as well; taking breaks throughout the day helps your overall quality of life.

To prevent this, manufacturers let you charge it up to a certain percentage, let's say 60%. Then the charger lets your device drain the battery a few percentages until it starts charging it again.

I wanted to use this feature, but I was definitely not going to start using Windows. My first idea was to manually unplug the charger and plug it back in after an hour or so, but this manual process was too error-prone.

Second idea.

Many years ago, I got a tip that I think about very often, it went something like "Always think of a second way of solving a problem, then you'll know you didn't pick the worst one."

And this time, my second idea was to use a smart plug. I didn't need anything with Alexa/Siri/Google Assistant integration; all I needed was a plug I could schedule so that it would turn on and off every so often.

I did some research, and two days later, I was home setting up a smart plug’s internal schedule.

From 8am until 8pm, the plug is instructed to stay on for one hour and then off for an hour, in a loop, every day. This schedule has worked well, while I test different ways to manipulate our large demo trading datasets, the battery drains, and if I happen to be pushing it too hard, a simple press of a button turns the plug on and the charge starts sooner.

I've been running this setup for about three weeks and my inner geek has been very happy with the results. I continue to use Linux, and I'm taking better care of my laptop's battery.

Creativity and Yama.

We recently announced Yama, our chatbot. Working on Yama has been an exciting journey, one where we also got to apply some creative solutions.

We are using natural language processing to extract meaning from questions our users ask. But unlike generic chatbots, we can take advantage of the data we have. When we get a question, we've programmed Yama so that the question influences the algorithm, which in turn provides our customers with more accurate responses.

Final thoughts.

I hope this post illustrates the kind of holistic approach TradeLlama takes when implementing features for our clients. We don't just take packaged solutions and put our brand on them. We use unsupervised machine learning algorithms in ways you don't normally see them being used. By doing this, we get to solve real problems our customers have and have fun in the process.

Your trading data has a lot of answers, waiting for the right questions to be asked. Our mission is helping you find those questions, with the help of machine learning, decades of experience in this market, and our human touch.

-DM