Nerd Up [Co-Coding Session]

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Nerd UP

The Nerd UP project is an initiative focused on the self-development of every enthusiast in the field of data science. It’s not a course or training but has the form of a co-coding session where beginners and even advanced people with an interest in machine learning and data science gather physically to learn together by coding without the guidance of a teacher or a lector.

The Nerd Up sessions are thought as regular events where the people will have a friendly environment and a physical place where they can gather together each week and develop in the field by coding with a group on a project.

At the first sessions of Nerd UP everyone will share their interests for practice in data science and we will brainstorm together who wants to work on what project. There will be several projects to join in which will start with the beginning of the initiative so the formed groups will choose their pace of learning and how they want to proceed to the project.

We invite all interested people who are dedicated to their self-improvement and will spare the time of the week to grow together with others in the field of machine learning and data science.

Who is this activity for?

In the very beginning when you’ve just heard about data science, machine learning and deep learning you may roaming in the dark. There is an enormous amount of information about this and you’ll don’t know what is important for you and what is just hype around. The best way to clarify the essence of this expertise is to try it out in a very easy way. If you’re are a programmer who wants to move to this area or a tech lead and need some insights… or maybe even if you’ re CTO and passioned about technical details this activity is for you.

The activity doesn’t expect that you know Python, Jupyter Notebook, or statistics. It’s good if you have knowledge but there will be also an opportunity to get familiar with it during practicing some tasks and depending on the projects you have picked.

How can you participate?

The activity is dedicated to everyone with an interest in the field from a practitioner point of view and it’s highly suitable for busy people who have a very tough schedule.

• As a participant

This is the mode when you’re trying to follow along predefined milestones by the group you are part of. You can switch the mode at any time depends on your work/life schedule. The whole group will decide about the next milestone altogether so you will figure out which is the best option for you. At every co-coding session, the study group will pick its tasks for the next session. You also can choose your own task if you like it more.

All interested people are invited to join even later and they will have the opportunity to track the progress.

Why participate?

The exciting about those Nerd UP co-coding sessions is that:

  • Every participant can learn following his own pace and the one set within the study group s/he will pick to be part of
  • The projects to choose from will try to cover the majority of skills set required for real projects and this depends on the group you will be part of. If needed, an expert might be invited.
  • This is not a course with somebody to control what to do – it’s a friendly environment for a study group which decides their own direction of studying with full freedom
  • You can switch the study group if you want to
  • Every study group will have the opportunity to present their project at our Data MeetUps once they have finished
  • We will gather together, code, drink beer and eat pizzas while doing something practical
  • There are no rules 

What will you get from it?

First of all, what you won’t get.

This is not a learning course with a teacher. So you won’t get homework or predefined strong class structure. Also, nobody will control your activity and pace. You’re the teacher and the boss for yourself. It’s up to you and your dedication how fast you will improve.

Now what you’ll get.

The most important outcome is your real experience in data science. As an active participant of the NerdUP sessions, you are supposed to obtain skills and knowledge in the field of Data Science depended on the project you have selected to be part of.

First Projects to pick from

This initiative is happening by an idea of one of our volunteers – Alexander Goida. Thanks to his effort and dedication, we are launching the co-coding sessions and here is the list of the first topics to start with:

1. The Process of Building a Model for a Recommendation System

The active participants in this study group will learn how to develop on Python, prepare data for model training, create a model, build ETL pipeline and Continuous Deployment process to refresh existing models. For starting this the study group, Alex prepared soft guideline about stages that a group is recommended to pass. Each stage will have a final meet up with a summary of obstacles and solutions. The initial structure with tasks to cover is with the goal of faster improvement. The level to be developed following this pipeline will be advanced (even starting from scratch) and the problems to be revisioned will focus on Sentiment analysis, classification, clustering and recommender systems. The final aim is to build a model for a recommendation system based on data from Amazon Fine Food Reviews.

2. Implement the theory using real data

Similar to our Datathons where the participants have a case and real data coming from business, there will be such a study group where people will have retail data and the opportunity to play with the data for creating models for existing challenges. In this study group, the initial tasks and the direction will be discussed and decided when the group is formed by its members.

3. Building Front-End for the Good Causes

We at Data Science Society have some very good causes (e.g. the Fake news detection, Sofia air quality prediction, European Health survey, National educational survey, Public tenders register mapping, Pisa educational data mining, etc.) But all of them do not seem to get publicity, mainly because there are not supported with user-friendly tools to be used by the public, but rather only mathematical models. So the idea is since we already have decent models, why not finish up them with some sort of front ends, so that they could be used easily by everyone.

Some Notes

Stay Open!  For every project, the study group will be able to set their Data.Chat channel for internal communication and sharing progress. The only requirement as a recommendation at NerdUP is for the study group to keep their progress open and shared within the community for people who might join later. For the people who come to a session for the first time and want to join, at the beginning of every session, there should be a fast intro (max 5 minutes) to the stage where the group is.  Each study group will set their own deadline for finishing a project to not losing motivation…

And that’s it, let’s code and improve together! 


We want to thank our partners from Sofia Lab for their support and willingness to provide us a home for the co-coding sessions!

Location: Sofia Lab, 1 Serdika Str., 1000 Sofia, Bulgaria

Time: 19:00 on Wednesday, 16th of January


Bookings are closed for this event.