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Comment: Re:Mental masturbation (Score 2) 123

Yeah, he kind of covers that in section 5. No reason for picking his model (other than simplicity), it can't predict new characters, and there's very little data to go off of.

Sure, it's mental masturbation. But developing little toy models like this is still interesting and helps you understand limitations and keep up your skills without working on big, complicated, boring real statistical models. This kind of thing is worth doing for the same reason masturbating is worth doing--it's fun. As long as you don't take it too seriously and start confusing it with actual sex.

Comment: I like this logic (Score 1) 186

by naturalog (#37658576) Attached to: A Few Million Monkeys Finish Recreating Shakespeare's Works
If this counts as 'monkey analogs' writing Shakespeare, I should start keeping a list of words I say. Then when any new book comes out, if it can be written using only words I've previously generated, but not necessarily the same order, then I wrote the book. Only Dr. Seuss will be safe from my litigation.

Comment: Re:math (Score 1) 241

by naturalog (#37580946) Attached to: How often do you put pen to paper?
I've always wondered if it would be difficult to make a voice recognition program integrate mathematical symbols. Even though those symbols exist as a shorthand, fields with underdeveloped notation can be a little cumbersome for writing. Anyone who can make my pen obsolete by accomplishing this can claim it as a prize.

Those who can, do; those who can't, simulate.

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