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    nmw 15:16:27 on 2016/03/04 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , , , , content. Wordpress, , , functional, , , , intelligences, , , , , procedural, procedure, procedures, refer, reference, relate, , , , , , technologies, , tool, , , , ,   

    Limitations in the WordPress Notifications algorithm 

    Ted and Brandon’s most recent episode of the „Concerning AI“ podcast is a very rewarding listen… – mainly because of their thinking with respect to compassion towards (or against) algorithms.

    Having compassion towards or against an algorithm seems like a very strange concept, and I feel I very much agree with Ted and Brandon’s thinking during the episode, but I also want to use the suggestion as a „what if“ sort of springboard.

    Ted and Brandon provided several examples algorithms (and/or tools). Perhaps the quintessential example is the hammer (for pounding nails). Another example they provided was the so-called „Google“ algorithm (presumably counting the links that point to any particular internet address, in order to „load the value“ of that address. Another algorithm they mentioned was an „alpha“ (sp?) Go algorithm. One they didn’t mention was the Facebook Group algorithm, which they employ for the purposes of facilitating discussions related to the podcast. Another algorithm (or perhaps „procedural code“ might be a more appropriate term) they didn’t mention is the WordPress Notifications procedure (or function?) … which attempts to notify the management of a site running WordPress when content on the site is mentioned. I am not exactly sure how it works – but I think both sites might have to be running WordPress (or at least software that is compatible with the notification procedure / function)… thereby enabling one site to send the other site some message indicating that the latter site was referenced by the first site. In traditional publishing, such references were called „footnotes“, and there was indeed also a tool in the paper era that notified authors when something they wrote had been cited (these were referred to „citation indexes“).

    I am belaboring this one algorithm (or procedure or function or whatever sort of code it might be) primarily because I think it could be coded better. As far as I know, whenever I mention the site concerning.ai in general, the concerning.ai site is not notified. The only way the concerning.ai site can be notified by my mentioning it is if I mention a particular piece of content – for example: Episode Number 14. I think it would be nice if the site would be notified even if I only refer to the site in general.

    Ted and Brandon discuss that they don’t feel as if they can empathize with any of the algorithms they mention – but I feel the probably do. If they want to play Go, then they will probably be more likely to „hang out“ with a Go algorithm. If they want to meet people, they might be more likely to „hang out“ with a Facebook algorithm. If they want to watch Youtube videos, they might search for such information directly on Youtube, or perhaps the might utilize the Google search algorithm (in particular because Google and Youtube are apparently very closely related).

    I have a hunch that the best way to think about this is via the concept of relationships. When my aim is to pound nails, then I will probably develop a close relationship with a hammer. If my aim is to play Go, then I could develop a relationship with algorithms devoted to Go (perhaps alpha-go.com or maybe play-go.net etc.), or perhaps I could input strings into some other algorithm (e.g. Google, Facebook, Youtube, etc.) and use whatever output I get in order to reach my goal. This might also work for the goal „have a conversation“. Indeed: many written texts are in a way conversations, and we often develop relationships with codices that are no longer limited to the life spans of their authors, etc. I don’t even know who invented hammers. I mainly simply think of them as „hammer“.

    Please note that I have tried to make this post very brief. Lawrwnce Lessig has argued about the code in so-called “artificial languages” being like laws. I could equally well argue that the code in laws codified in so-called “natural language” are actually code. For more on this, please consider also reading “How to Constrain the Freedom to Choose the Best of all Possible Worlds During an Era of Uninterrupted Progress“.

     
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    feedwordpress 15:38:17 on 2013/12/25 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , , coach, coaches, coaching, , execution, executive, executives, , , , , , , , , , , , , podcast, podcasts, , purposes, , Ted Ernst Sarvata, tool, ,   

    Looking Back, Looking Forward 

    Listening to some Dire Straits, I figure I might as well go down to the water line… ;)

    This year has been tremendous! :D This year has been stupendous!! 8O This year has been a blast and a half!!!

    I won’t recount everything, mostly because I don’t want to embarrass everyone. :P I will stop with the stupid smileys, though — in case you’re almost ready to pull out all of your hair ;) )….

    I choose to highlight one thing in particular: My friend Ted Ernst Sarvata‘s new podcast, the Purpose Podcast. I’ve been listening since he started it this past summer, and now I think I’ve figured out one of my purposes in life: To get people out of the way — of each other, and also out of the way of other forms of life. I have been deeply influenced by very many very smart people in this… and it was not a completely straightforward insight (at least not for me), and so I’d like to explain my thinking at least a little bit… or at least I’d like to try to do that!

    So here goes: There are (surpise, surprise!) some people who are simply letting their badness run wild, they don’t seem to be able to reign it in, and they make life difficult for us nice guys! I simply want to get them out of the way.

    One of the people who has influenced my thinking is entirely unknown to me. This person wrote an article titled: “Why I’m Not a Leader (and Why You Shouldn’t Be Either)“. I hope Sean Werkema will get a trackback (and maybe even sign up / join TAGSEO — and I also think you should join, too!).

    I think Sean put it very well, and whatever school turned him down must have too many too conservative thinkers to be a place to learn some new tricks!

    For Ted, I would add that I now guess that the Wisdom of the Language is probably a tool to achieve this purpose — but I am not sure. Maybe someday we can chat on the phone, and if he can record it, he can ask me questions and I could try to give somewhat coherent answers and/or explain something that still seems to be stuck in my brain as if it were molasses or some other strange gooey syrup.

     
  • Profile photo of feedwordpress

    feedwordpress 16:50:32 on 2013/11/09 Permalink
    Tags: , creation, , , , instrument, instruments, , , , , , , , tool,   

    A Machine to Create the Future 

    One of my favorite chapters in E.F. Schumacher’s “Small is Beautiful” is called “A Machine to Foretell the Future” — in this chapter, Professor Schumacher criticized (more or less) what my father did for a living: Econometrics and econometric forecasting.

    There’s a popular quote from Walt Disney that goes something like:

    the best way to predict the future is to create it

    Today, we have machines to comb through the past (e.g. Google.com, Archive.org, etc.), machines to share the present (Twitter.com, Facebook.com, etc.), but it seems like we don’t have anything that might help us create the future. :|

    Note the word “seems” — I actually have an idea in this vein… I am working on it now. What kinds of “features” do you think such a machine ought to have?

     
  • Profile photo of feedwordpress

    feedwordpress 19:13:39 on 2013/02/27 Permalink
    Tags: , , humanism, , languagle, , , , , , , , tool,   

    Humanity, Science, Machines and Love 

    Let me start with machines. Machines need something to work. Their food is electricity, oil, or any resource they can use as a source of power. They need materials as inputs, then they create products as output.

    Humans are different — we just exist. Or maybe we were put here by God. We can be nice, we can be nasty,… — by and large we try to get along and love each other.

    When many — or maybe most? — people think about love, they think in terms of “you” and “me”, not so much in materialistic terms such as “input” or “output”. We may say we love chocolate or ice cream, but that is both different than the relationships machines have to their sources of power and also different than the way we love each other.

    Machines are on a grid, they are all hooked up to each other somehow. Trying something like that with humans might land you in jail.

    When I think about language as a tool for communication, people think that sounds abstract, mathematical, and cold. Most humans don’t think love is a matter of networking with everything, so love and science have nothing to do with each other.

    Pollution and global warming may be bad, but it isn’t as bad as Hell.

     
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