- People v. Dronimos
- Writers v. A.I. Rowling
- The Algorithm Defense
The transcript of Josh’s fantastic talk on machine learning, voice, data, APIs, and all the other tools of algorithmic design:
The design and presentation of data is just as important as the underlying algorithm. Algorithmic interfaces are a huge part of our future, and getting their design right is critical—and very, very hard to do.
Josh put together ten design principles for conceiving, designing, and managing data-driven products. I’ve added them to my collection.
- Favor accuracy over speed
- Allow for ambiguity
- Add human judgment
- Advocate sunshine
- Embrace multiple systems
- Make it easy to contribute (accurate) data
- Root out bias and bad assumptions
- Give people control over their data
- Be loyal to the user
- Take responsibility
I can forgive our answer machines if they sometimes get it wrong. It’s less easy to forgive the confidence with which the bad answer is presented, giving the impression that the answer is definitive. That’s a design problem.
Jake is absolutely spot-on here. There’s been a lot of excited talk about adding an
h element to HTML but it all seems to miss the question of why the currently-specced outline algorithm hasn’t been implemented.
This is a common mistake in standards discussion — a mistake I’ve made many times before. You cannot compare the current state of things, beholden to reality, with a utopian implementation of some currently non-existent thing.
If you’re proposing something almost identical to something that failed, you better know why your proposal will succeed where the other didn’t.
Jake rightly points out that the first step isn’t to propose a whole new element; it’s to ask “Why haven’t browsers implemented the outline for sectioned headings?”
Matt takes a look at the history of scheduled broadcast media—which all began in Hungary in 1887 via telephone—and compares it to the emerging media context of the 21st century; the stream.
If the organizing principle of the broadcast schedule was synchronization — millions seeing the same thing at the same time — then the organizing principle of the stream is de-contextualization — stories stripped of their original context, and organized into millions of individual, highly personalized streams.
The view that more information uncritically produces better decisions is visibly at odds with our contemporary situation.
A superb piece of research and writing by James, skewering the technological determinism that underlies the current faith in “big data.” At best, this misplaced trust is inaccurate; at worst, it is deadly.
To the algorithmic imagination, the practice of journalism and the practice of terrorism appear to be functionally identical.
The act of linking to this story is making it true.
“I don’t think there’s any law against this,” I said. How could there be a law against something that’s not possible?
Tim Maughan reports on the same container ship trip that Dan W. is sending his postcards from.
I like the idea of there being an Apollo-sized project all around us, if you just know where to look.
First, towering above and over the ship, are the loading cranes. Vast structures mounted on huge, four-legged frames, they resemble the naked scaffolding of unbuilt skyscrapers, and trigger nostalgic reminders of Saturn V rocket launch towers from the 1960s.
Once in port at night I saw one suddenly fire into life next to the ship in a stroboscopic explosion of lights, before it tracked slowly above my high vantage point, bathing me in the orange glow of a dozen small halogen suns.
The image-stitching algorithm is trying its best.
She can only offer you unconditional algo-love.
Perhaps that’s the purest love of all.
A fascinating look at how Flipboard combines art direction and algorithms to generate layouts.
A fun bit of Markov chaining of your tweets. Some of mine:
Had a burrito in Barcelona. Thank you get the peacocks plumage.
Stand by to the most helpful. The Fuck Was That type shop and David Byrne walked into a Wikipedia entry?
Last Waltz again. This Is A demonstration of The office doors are they talk right now. Cool your plans.
Picking salad leaves from the people who own them. They’re just resting” at the communal testing lab is!
Heading out the standard option. Alas, there’s no signs of spending Bloomsday as constructive feedback?
An algorithmically-generated font sounds like a terrible idea but I actually quite like the end result.
Algorithmically-generated combinations of tweets in iambic pentameter. Some of the results are really quite lovely. I’m imagining a poetry reading of this stuff in a hip café …it would be fun.
I don’t understand the maths, but the logic is fascinating.
A brave attempt to explain the new outline algorithm in HTML (although it inaccurately states that no browsers have support for it—Firefox shipped with it a while back).
You can safely skip the comments: most of them are discouraging, ignorant, and frankly, just plain stupid.
Mike takes on the very tricky task of explaining the new outline algorithm—definitely one of the hardest features of HTML5 to explain, in my opinion.
A truly beautiful piece of work: generative music based on Conway’s game of life. Go ahead: create something gorgeously unique.
The latest Webkit nightly includes the HTML5 parsing algorithm. Now it's a race between Firefox, Safari and Chrome to see which will be first (non-beta) browser to ship with the new parser.
A very handy tool to help you check the outline algorithm in HTML5.