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Comment Re:Mental masturbation (Score 2) 127

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 Re:math (Score 1) 241

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.

Comment TI-89 (Score 1) 776

My favorite is a TI-89 emulator, because when I use a calculator I'm usually not in it for the general operations. Unless you count Mathematica as on-screen (and as a calculator). But I guess anything that can make graphs and calculate their diameters and girths for me isn't a 'calculator.'

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One good reason why computers can do more work than people is that they never have to stop and answer the phone.