" /> Coruscation: March 2018 Archives

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March 31, 2018

Pete Warden on machine learning reproducibility crisis

Pete WardenM.a> on the understated
reproducibility crisis in machine learning, with aside on technical debt.

Machine learning offers a fantastically powerful toolkit for building complex systems quickly. This paper argues that it is dangerous to think of these quick wins as coming for free. Using the framework of technical debt, we note that it is remarkably easy to incur massive ongoing maintenance costs at the system level when applying machine learning. The goal of this paper is highlight several machine learning specific risk factors and design patterns to be avoided or refactored where possible. These include boundary erosion, entanglement, hidden feedback loops, undeclared consumers, data dependencies, changes in the external world, and a variety of system-level anti-patterns.

March 27, 2018

Spring Sunburn Alert

Even on. acold spring day, sunburn is a risk. Know your SPF.

March 5, 2018

Human-Driving Manifesto

The first five points of Alex Roy's Human-Driving Manifesto are on point.

1. We Are Pro-Human, in pursuit of life, liberty and freedom of movement, by any means that does not infringe upon the safety of others.

2. We Are Pro-Technology, but only as a means, not an end. Technology is only as good as our understanding of it, and an incremental approach will save more lives in the near and long term while mitigating the second order consequences of an all-or-nothing approach.

3. We Are Pro-Safety, through a combination of improved drivers education, deployment of Advanced Drivers Assistance Systems (ADAS)--such as Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB) & Forward Collision Warning (FCW) Systems--and Parallel automation.

4. We Support Raising Driver Licensing Standards. Driving is a privilege, not a right. Earn it, keep it. Abuse it, lose it. Periodic retesting is essential. Education must include familiarization with the capabilities and limitations of new safety technologies.

5. We Support Defined Safety Standards & Transparency. "Safe" and "safer" must be defined, and claims by autonomous vehicle manufacturers and providers must be backed up by data shared publicly. If and when self-driving cars meet a regulatory safety standard, their deployment cannot infringe the public's freedom of movement.

March 2, 2018

Paul Soulellis' the post, the feed, the never-ending scroll: PERFORMING THE FEED

PERFORMING THE FEED by Paul Soulellis depicts how static blog posts lost favour to algorithmicly amplified and trending recently posted social media snippets. From Cybernetics 2018.

What is the balance between curation and performative work ? A history of the post, the feed, the never-ending scroll.

Start with the post -- the blog post, a news story that's been posted, a posted tweet. I see the act of posting as one of the foundational gestures of making public. Especially now, when we have an expanded field of publishing that includes anyone with a device who can amplify to the network.

All of this smoothed out into a performative stream of data that infiltrates like an atmospheric presence -- and so it's fitting to mention Manuel Castells' now twenty-year-old idea -- the space of flows. He says that flow is the space of power and domination over experience, because forces may act all at once, in a unified way, outside of contiguous space.