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Machine Learning Used To Predict Military Suicides

lorinc The New Magic (74 comments)

Stop speaking of machine learning as if it's a new kind of black magic. I know it sounds better than "using a mathematical algorithm" or "performed statistical analysis", but to me it sounds as ridiculous as the "quantum whatever" of the 90's. Seriously, ML is being hyped beyond reasonable.

about a month ago
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I'm most interested in robots that will...

lorinc All of first 6 (307 comments)

I want all of the first 6!

about a month ago
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Denmark Faces a Tricky Transition To 100 Percent Renewable Energy

lorinc Re:Home storage (488 comments)

This is nothing compared to the price of the house. Let the company that builds the house install them, like they install isolating windows (which are more expensive than that, btw). Or rent it from your electricity provider. Yeah it's expensive for an egoistic individual, but it is not for the entire society.

about a month ago
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Denmark Faces a Tricky Transition To 100 Percent Renewable Energy

lorinc Home storage (488 comments)

Seriously. If a car can get a 50+kwh battery in it, why can't every house have it too? That storage capacity is enough for a few days of intensive use.

about a month ago
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Google To Lease and Refurbish Naval Air Base For Space Exploration

lorinc In SI for the non-US readers (89 comments)

1000 acres = 4 square kilometers or 404 hectares

about a month ago
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Machine Learning Expert Michael Jordan On the Delusions of Big Data

lorinc Re:I disagree. (145 comments)

You should probably take some lectures in computer vision, it would change your view on it. It's either that, or you have a misconception about what a human does when he's learning.

I'll take the Turing view on humans: big and horribly complex machine running a big and horribly complex algorithm. A part of this algorithm and its dedicated hardware is something we call "vision". Of course, it's a big an clunky part, and we even don't know its exact boundaries.

Now suppose you have a computer that does run an algorithm which is equivalent to the one of the human. Wouldn't you call it "computer vision"? I think that's a pretty good name that reflects correctly what the thing does.

Here comes the tricky part: we don't have the algorithm yet, nor do we know all the things it should do. Hell, we don't even now how to measure the equivalence with the human one!

But things are advancing and we're getting more and more pieces that seem to behave closer to the human algorithm (same inputs, same outputs). Some pieces are easy (depth estimation from calibrated stereo cameras), some are more involved but we can do it pretty well (OCR), some are really hard and we begin to do them not so badly (object recognition) and some are just so crazy nobody is even working on it (animal identification comes to my mind. Example: which of the wolves in the pack is Titus?).

I have no doubt we'll have one day a collection of algorithm that can do anything a human can do with his vision, whatever the environment. If that's close or far away is still debate though. I guess it will be much quicker than anyone expected, myself included. Will that collection be the same as the one in the human brain, i.e., will we have deciphered the human algorithm? No. That's not even a question in computer vision, that's a question of cognitive sciences. Although some parts can be inspired by what cognitive science tells us about the human mind (see, e.g., the recent developments in deep neural nets).

Suppose you now have that algorithm, wouldn't you sell it as "a complete solution comparable to a human" to quote your words? Of course you would, that's exactly what you tried to achieve from the beginning. Now, if a magazine sells it a already done while it still is being research, blame the journalist, not the scientists. It's been 50 years that journalists have sold nuclear fusion as our energy revolution coming next year, and still you wouldn't say physicists in the field are only good at marketing without strong stuff behind them.

(disclaimer: I also work in the field)

about 2 months ago
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Will the Google Car Turn Out To Be the Apple Newton of Automobiles?

lorinc Re:Limited Vision (287 comments)

I don't agree with you. Scientific expansion in ML is of exponential growth: what took 20 years to achieve will take only 10 to be doubly improved. When I see the state of the art in computer vision 2014, I have almost no doubt the vision problems associated with automatic cars will be solve in a fewer amount of time that anyone expected.

about 2 months ago
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For Game Developers, It's About the Labor of Love

lorinc Re:I hate this strategy of justifying exploitation (164 comments)

On the contrary, when a job is paid too much, people are doing it for the sake of money and not because they love to do it. Think of the politicians. They don't care that much about ideas, they are into opinions, and more favorably the ones that will get them the cash. That's why we get all these crappy laws.

Think of a fireworker paid a million dollars. At that rate, you'll get a bunch of real assholes that will do anything to get the job because of the money, but when the day comes they have to risk their life to save your ass, they'll just flee saying "f**k, that's not worth it".

So while I totally agree with you on the low pay justified by passion bullshit, my point is that we should not rely on high pay to expect the jobs to be done correctly. A job is done correctly iff the guy in charge is happy with his job done correctly.

about 2 months ago
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Outsourced Tech Jobs Are Increasingly Being Automated

lorinc Re: Monitoring software (236 comments)

That being said, it can surely be further automated in the next decade to get rid of another 1/3. How many decades until there is only one guy at your factory that is in charge of rebooting the whole system if ever it fails?

It's not that automation is bad, it's actually great for the human condition, it's our society that cannot handle such evolution.

about 2 months ago
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Is an Octopus Too Smart For Us To Eat?

lorinc Re:People (481 comments)

Self-preservation. We are people, hence by social contract we (no longer) eat each other. That way each of us can feel safe that others will not consume him. We consider people who violate that rule criminals or insane and deal with them appropriately.

There is no such social contract with animals. We can eat them and they, occasionally, eat humans too.

This.

You can even extend this to why we don't eat cats and dogs. Dog owners don't want their neighbors to eat their precious family pet, and nobody want such a mess in society. These are self preserving rules of our society, and not things based on some fancy individual reasoning. Note that in not so ancient time, people did eat dogs in most Europe, but that was before dogs were common pet.

about 2 months ago
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New Study Projects World Population of 11B by 2100

lorinc Re:Assuming we find a hydrocarbon energy substitut (326 comments)

The thing is, population will continue to grow even long after the resources collapse, because it has some delay between the behavior changes and the economic situation. This just makes things even more likely to end with the nuke option.

about 3 months ago
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Solar Powered Technology Enhances Oil Recovery

lorinc Re:Renewable (82 comments)

As of 2014, how do you power trucks, tractors, cargo ships, and planes on solar?

I dunno. Maybe but using the energy to synthesize some chemicals that can later on be burned in a motor, performing a closed cycle.

about 3 months ago
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Solar Powered Technology Enhances Oil Recovery

lorinc Renewable (82 comments)

Using renewable energy to tap unrenewable energy... Seems not really enduring. Why not just use directly the renewable energy in first place?

about 3 months ago
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Is It Time To Split Linux Distros In Two?

lorinc Re:I think this is a good idea. (282 comments)

I am a linux sysadmin, and many of the packages required for desktop use not only don't apply to me, but are pretty well useless. I would love to see a distribution where any dependency on X11 was not only stripped out - but *compiled* out. I would love to see a distribution where systemd was not getting its mitts into everything.

It's called gentoo.

about 3 months ago
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Is It Time To Split Linux Distros In Two?

lorinc Nonsense (282 comments)

It's up to the distro to focus on what they want and make declination either for desktop, or servers, mobile, embedded, etc. None of this has anything to do with linux which is, you know, just a kernel.

about 3 months ago
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Invasion of Ukraine Continues As Russia Begins Nuclear Weapons Sabre Rattling

lorinc Re:Wow (789 comments)

If Putin gets Ukraine, then it's going to get even worse. Do you remember that little sentence about about "dishonor and war" 75 years ago? It's about the same situation today.

about 4 months ago
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Should police have cameras recording their work at all times?

lorinc Not needed (455 comments)

If you live in a society where you can trust no one and especially the police officers, well, just move somewhere else because that's the anti-definition of society. And ask yourself about your personal contribution to that awful shift of behavior.

about 4 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Are the Best Games To Have In Your Collection?

lorinc The Great Dalmuti (382 comments)

The rules are simple and you can play with almost any number of people. Even people who don't like to play games often give a try.

about 4 months ago

Submissions

lorinc hasn't submitted any stories.

Journals

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Project Death Star

lorinc lorinc writes  |  about 2 years ago

I'm not american, but I'd love to see the US build a Death Star by 2016 (which ultimately uncovers the true evil nature of this country -- just kidding). I'm pretty sure there are enough nerds out there to have the government think about it, so stand up american geeks and vote!

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