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Comment Forecasting (Score 3, Interesting) 148

machine learning is more about forecasting than about understanding the effects of policy

And forecasting depends on some underlying behavioral model. Problem is, people keep changing the model. They try to anticipate or short markets to gain an advantage and very rapidly, this new response to market conditions replaces the previous behavior, invalidating previous relationships.

Comment Re:Programmed behaviour is programmed behaviour. (Score 1) 419

In the short-term, the human driver can take over in these situations.

But the human 'driver', freed of the need to keep tabs on traffic is probably doing something else.

Yesterday, I was coming home through the daily traffic jam. Heading eastbound, I saw a van stopped in the westbound lane, backing up traffic. I figured it had broken down or something until I passed it. The driver had his nose in his phone, busily texting away (or playing Angry Birds). He probably figured that he'd get something else done while the line wasn't moving and failed to notice that it had started again.

Comment Re:At what point (Score 1) 81

it's plain simple theft.

And murder committed in the comission of another crime is treated as aggravated murder. Even if you didn't pull the trigger but only drove the getaway car, if the bank guard got killed, you can be found guilty.

The theft is the aggravating offense. Bridges caused someone to attempt murder. So he should be charged with aggravated attempted murder.

Comment Re:How was he caught? (Score 1) 81

The wallets can be anonymous. But it's a simple matter to trace Bitcoin through a series of wallets. Once the real owner of one of these is identified, one can trace certain transactions back the other way.

For Bitcoin to be of any use, eventually it will be spent on actual goods. And these can be traced. Very few people have the discipline to maintain multiple completely separate lives.

We don't really understand it, so we'll give it to the programmers.