The Peltarion Forums are online again. We turned them off for a time while due to the excessive levels of spam. CAPTCHAs have turned out to be rather useless as the spammers use human beings to crack them.
With all the spam the forums turned out to be more work than it was worth. Only a very small percentage of users ever even looked at them, much less posted. From customer surveys we've figured out that the primary reason for this is that most of our customers are using it for commercial purposes. They tend to be protective of their IP and not really interested in participating in an internet community. The ratio of support emails that we get vs request for support through the forums is perhaps 100:1 if not more.
Ultimately we decided to re-open them again, but not accepting any new outside registrations except from customers.
If you are a customer, log in to your account, go to the support section and click on the email link. Just write that you want an account in the body of the email. For now we'll process the requests manually - we may automate it in the future.
In the future we may allow the registration of non-customer users in some way, but right now we're taking it one step at a time.
One commonly asked question is how to best use a trained system with new data. There are three basic approaches:
- Using the probe post-processing component .
- Deploying the system (covered in detail by tutorial #2)
- Loading the new data into Synapse
As the first two ways are covered by existing tutorials, this post will cover 3) - how you load and and use new data within a solution in Synapse.
Synapse 1.5 has been released and is available for download.
- Full multicore support for optimizers.
- A new Fully Forward Connected Perceptron Array (FFCPA) advanced neural network block.
- New non-linear gradient optimization algorithms.
- Improved SQL interoperability and data loading performance improvement.
- Control system customization (for deployment)
- Many performance improvements and bug fixes.
If you have Synapse installed and automatic updates enabled, you'll get the 1.5 version just by starting up Synapse - for Windows 7 & Server 2008 installations, read note below. Customers can download the full installation package from the customer area. A 30-day evaluation version can be downloaded here.
Very important upgrade information
Due to recent changes to the way Windows handles file and directory permissions, if you have User Account Control (UAC) activated the Synapse automatic updates will fail. This is because it no longer has permissions to write to its own plugin directory. In order for the upgrade to work you need to right click on the Synapse icon and select "Run as administrator".
You will only need to do this once as the 1.5 version is compatible with the newer Windows permission policy.
It’s been a while since we published anything here on the blog so here is an update on what’s happening at Peltarion and what the near future looks like.
Two new products
We are currently working hard on the development of two new products. At this point the only things that we can reveal is that the products won’t replace Synapse, and that one is planned for a 2011 and the other for 2012.
The next version of Synapse (1.4) is currently under development. It is feature complete but we have some work left to make it ready for release. It will among other things include multi-core support for optimizers – something that required a complete rewrite of the batch processing system. Synapse 1.4 is planned for release Q2/Q3 2010.
Finally, an exciting bit of news is that we have begun a collaboration with Intel. We are not allowed to say anything about it yet, but it involves a combination of their next generation technology and our next generation technology. There will be some seriously cool stuff there.
--The Peltarion Team
We have moved to new offices at Sveavägen 52 in Stockholm:
A few pictures (we’re still decorating):
The Peltarion Forums are now finally online. They are provided as a courtesy first to the users of Peltarion software and second to people interested in adaptive systems. Since Synapse was first released in 2006 we have had many requests for community forums to be set up. It took until now because most of the Peltarion staff felt that there were higher priorities than to spend a large amount of time moderating and administering the forums. An introduction of community forums was however always on the agenda.
This can be considered a test run of the forums. Should they prove popular and work well, we'll keep them. Our goal is that they in the end will be 100% community managed. For now however, moderation will be done by Peltarion staff until and if the forum participation grows to be large enough to pick moderators from the community. This goes for the wiki based general documentation system as well. Right now the documentation is read only for all but Peltarion staff, but should the community grow large enough, it will be opened up for editing by trusted members of the community.
We hope you will find the forums useful and that it will connect you to other people with similar interests in adaptive systems. We know from the support email we get that there are a lot of people working on similar problems. Hopefully it will be the place where they can exchange experiences and ideas.
--The Peltarion Team
We have released Synapse 1.3.1 which contains a number of improvements.
The most visible change is to the Sensitivity Analyzer postprocessor which now has a new interface and functions for compensating for internal correlation between features.
There are two major groups of fixes that have been made. One concerns how validation sets are handled by control systems and filters. Only having one or more validation sets could cause inconsistent behaviour in some filters and that has been fixed.
The second group concerns data loading with major improvements in the SQL format and the CSV file format. In both cases threaded data loading speeds have been vastly improved. Also support for accessing a Synapse solution offline (i.e. when the data file/database connection is can't be accessed) has been added. The data unit input manager has been improved as well to better support threaded loading and offline mode.
Finally, on an unrelated topic, the Peltarion website now fully supports the Google Chrome browser.
--The Peltarion Team
Summer is here and Peltarion would like for you to enjoy it as much as we do. Therefore we are currently offering a limited number of Synapse Licenses at half price during July and August! The first licenses each month are automatically sold at half price. There is only a limited number though, so act while there is still time.
Are there discounted licenses left for this month? Visit our web shop and see for yourself!
Update: All discounted licenses have now been sold out. Congratulations to everyone that got a discounted license!
Synapse 1.3 has been released and is available for download. This release is a big one with new features and improvements in over 50 components. Although there are hundreds of improvements in the new version there are three major features that you will notice right away:
- Integrated help system. On all blocks and filters you can now find a "Help" item in the settings browser. Clicking on it will take you to the relevant documentation in our new documentation system.
- Script Filter and Script Format components with an advanced Visual Studio-like code editor that allows you to write your own filters and formats directly from Synapse:
- LSTMs (Long Short-Term Memories) are advanced memory structures for use in dynamic adaptive systems. Unlike standard feedback loops LSTMs can preserve information over indefinite time gaps. With LSTMs previously unsolvable time-series problems can now be handled with ease.
If you have Synapse installed and automatic updates enabled, you'll get the 1.3 version just by starting up Synapse. Customers can download the full installation package from the customer area. A 30-day evaluation version can be downloaded here.
We are currently in the process of upgrading our server hardware, software as well as launching a new version of the home page and a new version of Synapse. This will cause interruptions in our service for the next 24-48 hours. We apologize for the inconvenience but we are sure you will like the improvements.
The new documentation system (http://www.peltarion.com/doc) is online and you can reach it if your ISP's DNS entries have been updated (if not, they will within the next 24 hours). The forums (http://www.peltarion.com/forums) will remain offline for a short while until the upgrades have settled.
A new version of Synapse that features massive improvements will be released tomorrow as both download and automatic update. More on that tomorrow.
We apologize for any inconveniences during this upgrade and hope you will enjoy the new site and the new Synapse 1.3.
--The Peltarion Team
Synapse 1.2 has been released and is available for download. This release contains a large number of bug fixes in over 40 components making it the largest update yet in terms of number of changes.
There have been some features added as well - mostly minor usability features such as:
- Enhanced copy to clipboard functionality to visualizers
- Cropping by sample and seed support in crop filter
- Per channel equalizing with the equalizer filter
- Improved operator support in the expression filter
- More customization options (scaling, cropping, interpolation..) in image format
- Per sample mixing in the mixer filter
- Row concatenation support for the join format
- Integrated set support for the sink and output formats
- Support for seeds in the unit generation format
- Support for additional data types for the SQL format
Algorithm improvements include:
- NaN/ Infinity detection and prevention for gradient based update rules
- Improved selection algorithms for the GA optimizer
- Additional operators for the expression filter
- Thread securing of optimizable components (for multithreaded execution stability)
The update is about 5 Mb in size when upgrading from 1.1.
If you have Synapse installed and automatic updates enabled, you'll get the 1.2 version just by starting up Synapse. Customers can download the full installation package from the customer area. A 30-day evaluation version can be downloaded here.
We are happy to present a Christmas gift from us - a new version of Synapse. Version 1.1 includes over 400 improvements including new features and bug fixes. It would take up too much space to list them all, but here are a few highlights:
- A new visualizer, the SOM View that allows visualization and preprocessing of data using Self-Organizing maps. It can also produce clustering filters. For more details see this.
- A new powerful expression filter that allows you to create new features based on equation evaluation.
- New much requested "housekeeping" filters such as the reorder filter and rename filter.
- Windows Vista now supported
- Greatly improved support for data with a large number of features (such as images), including new ranged normalization and great performance enhancements.
- New binary compressed xml file format (.synx) for solutions (old plain xml still supported)
- The Error Analyzer can now send error (system metrics) data to preprocessing in the form of a full data unit.
and much, much more. Documentation for the new features will be published shortly.
If you have Synapse installed and automatic updates enabled, you'll get the 1.1 version just by starting up Synapse. Customers can download the full installation package from the customer area. A 30-day evaluation version can be downloaded here.
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from all of us at Peltarion!
The Peltarion Blog has now gone live. Here you will find regular updates and previews of upcoming Peltarion software and software. In addition, you'll get regular tips and guides to using Synapse and in the future other Peltarion products. Enjoy!