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Comment Re:I'm not surprised. (Score 2) 769

Really? Then why was it OK when Bill Clinton had sex with an intern?

The price of shame — March 2015

At the age of 22, I fell in love with my boss, and at the age of 24, I learned the devastating consequences.

The Republican weaponization of Clinton's misdeed was to claim that this behaviour made Bill unfit to govern. (If powerful men having extramarital affairs with young women was incompatible with leadership, well, the vast sweep of history does not so record.)

Family values aside, the power imbalance creates the risk that Bill would abuse his immense power to cover up the vastly exaggerated blot on his record. The Republicans actually knew that anyone with an accurate base rate of human history / human culture would not regard his behaviour as incompatible with leadership—though a common and damning blot nevertheless, so the tactic was to escalate the stakes until Bill felt compelled to lie about it—which, unfortunately, was extremely easy to anticipate.

Lying to formal body of review is considered incompatible with leadership, sort of, incrementally, since not all that long ago. For example, it barely extends as far back as the Reagan's Iran–Contra affair. (Some people roll with family values and view Clinton's offense as the worse offense. I happen to roll with geopolitical transparency, and so I view Reagan's offense as the worse offense—he appointed those clucks, and it was his ultimate responsibility to know all the big shit).

Bill was plenty smart enough to figure out that the public perception battle would play out exactly as it did, leaving him boxed into a corner where he could—according to his established character—only choose to lie (perhaps he overestimated his power to blow off the investigation, but even there, had he succeeded, he would have mortgaged a sizeable fraction of his presidential energy in ruthlessly defending his momentary gratification).

Clearly, his judgment in this matter fell short of the mark by any standard.

However, I rate it not quite as bald as boasting about sexual harassment with a camera rolling. Whatever Bill purportedly said to Donald on the golf course (that was "far worse" in Donald's personal judgement), there was no film at eleven after the fact.

The modern world contains a lot of cameras and microphones. Trump's world has contained many cameras and microphones since way back. A prudent man in his position wouldn't be openly bragging about his magical power to get away with sexual harassment just to impress Billy Bush. And it's not like Donald didn't have a front row vantage point on Bill sinking his own boat through which to consider and amend his own standard of personal conduct. Donald had every opportunity to know better, and the penny never dropped.

So in summary, a whole lot of things are "not okay" but still the world largely spins as it has always done for thousands of years.

Comment Re:That's why I pay to recycle monitors (Score 0, Troll) 271

I know that's no guarantee but you do the best you can.

Considering how much you originally paid for your deoxygenated speaker wire, I would say $40 is the least you can do.

Were you to model the price signal with quaternion rotation instead, you would discover that the price signal really can spin around to a perfect 180-degree inversion of "the best you can do", given but a sparse free-energy input of mindless optimism, and a scant few months to capture abandoned area under the curve (and that's not even including the machine learning revolution).

Perhaps capitalism eventually does the right thing, but not until after imbibing all the loose sugar.

First Law of Mice and Men: If something can go wrong, it will go wrong.

Corollary: If something can lead to an easy buck, it will lead to an easy buck.

Unfortunately, all the quaternions in this picture belong to the increasingly neutered EPA.

Comment another fish in the sea (Score 1) 152

In a dozen lifetimes I could hardly scratch all the great content on the internet that's available for free, or with barely any strings attached.

The best defense against the dark arts of advertising is a curiosity streak that's a mile wide.

Two words: substitute good.

At the first sign of trouble, I open alternate tabs like a cowboy after a bar brawl.

Comment Re:Won't work everywhere, or really anywhere else (Score 1) 180

So you've replaced a single CEO with the results of a vote between a few "senior staff". That leaves the rest of the company "not in charge".

Why stop your argument there? With another sentence or two, we can rewind western civilization all the way back to the Taliban's conception of marriage.

Because in any human collective, only one party can ultimately wear the pants.

How the truth stings. Resistance is futile. Sauron does not share power. Those poor, deluded Swedes. Yada yada yada.

Comment Re:What does this mean, exactly? (Score 2) 219

Ultimately, this will affect almost no one. Planning for this change has been happening for a long time now. Your favorite add-ons will continue to work.

Trust, but keep one foot wedged in the emergency exit, and one ear cocked for a fell voice on the air:

I cannot continue working on my add-ons anymore. I'm sorry, but it's time.

It took me a year and a half of extensive rewriting to make my add-ons e10s/multiprocess compatible, something that is being rolled out only now, all with the prospect of a long-lasting life for them. And the WebExtensions announcement was made not two months after. "Demotivating" doesn't quite cover it ...

Comment Re:Finally (Score 1, Insightful) 356

Much to the point of this thread, the day is not long in coming where a series of small, hotly debated innovations in machine learning will culminate in a robust classifier able to ferret out a dozen egregious offenses against working brain cells in that toxic screed of hot-button click-bait you just posted.

The wise among us will use this forthcoming capability to accept all well-formed signals, the fools will filter bubble to black. The later group being larger than the former group, while the former group holds all the marbles, much derived from clue will change, while much derived from populism changes little, as our social algorithms contrive to sneer, in an arms race of eloquent dissection.

If Linus had ever worked on a truly hard problem, he might think different. Not every impasse in life can be resolved by industrious sleeve-rolling.

Operating systems don't hold opinions on human social dynamics. Earth-shattering innovation need not apply.

Comment Re:Two different things (Score 1) 69

But props to MIT/Zhang for having a better understanding of patent law. That counts for a lot these days.

Your implication being that UC Berkeley doesn't see fit to make this caliber of legal advice available to faculty self-evidently working in fields with billions of dollars at stake?

If Berkeley fell short on sound legal acumen with the Holy Grail of the Biological Revolution inches away from the tips of their greedy little fingers, god help man with garage.

Comment Re:Artificial language limits (Score 1) 374

Any language that could replace C and assembler would need to be statically compiled. So for Java, C#, Python and so on you'd have to define a subset that does not require a runtime parser or standard library. And you'd need extensions (or a static module system) that allows you to add assembler for direct hardware access. And a new compiler that can generate static code instead of the intermediate VM they target now. Not impossible by any means and probably a fairly interesting exercise too, but the languages would end up rather different and more restricted than the full versions people are used to.

Rather, I expect and hope that something like Rust will eventually supplant these languages in this space. Rust gives you the best of both worlds, with a statically compiled binaries and good memory safety at compile time, rather than runtime. You pay for it by having to be much more explicit about ownership than in these languages though. I've followed that project for a good while and it's clear that targeting small embedded systems is a struggle even for such a language; Java and friends would be much more difficult still.

Comment Re:Artificial language limits (Score 1) 374

FORTH is the rare language that tends to be even more memory efficient than C. The runtime interpreter is truly minimal (really just following a bunch of jump tables); you can have a small environment and application code in less than 8K.

On the other hand - and I say this as someone who likes FORTH a lot - you'd be hard pressed to find people claiming that FORTH is any higher-level (or easier to develop in) than C or assembler.

On the third hand - and off-topic here - it's quite a fun little language to use. Just like you can say that Scheme is programming directly in an AST, using FORTH is writing code directly for a stack machine. It's probably good for you to have a bit of experience even if you never do anything "real" with it.

Comment Re:Layman's Terms (Score 5, Insightful) 154

A "layman" has no place in this discussion.

I have trouble comprehending the small mental world you live in where all of your knowledge is equally available at all times.

There's a reason why it's polite to gloss your acronyms on first use, even in the narrowest academic publications.

Just yesterday I was reviewing the literature on machine learning. The Juergen Schmidhuber review alone begins with the following glossary:

AE: Autoencoder
BFGS: Broyden—Fletcher—Goldfarb—Shanno
BNN: Biological Neural Network
BM: Boltzmann Machine
BP: Backpropagation
BRNN: Bi-directional Recurrent Neural Network
CAP: Credit Assignment Path
CEC: Constant Error Carousel
CFL: Context Free Language
CMA-ES: Covariance Matrix Estimation ES
CNN: Convolutional Neural Network
CoSyNE: Co-Synaptic Neuro-Evolution
CSL: Context Sensitive Language
CTC: Connectionist Temporal Classification
DBN: Deep Belief Network
DCT: Discrete Cosine Transform
DL: Deep Learning
DP: Dynamic Programming
DS: Direct Policy Search
EA: Evolutionary Algorithm
EM: Expectation Maximization
ES: Evolution Strategy
FMS: Flat Minimum Search
FNN: Feedforward Neural Network
FSA: Finite State Automaton
GMDH: Group Method of Data Handling
GOFAI: Good Old-Fashioned AI
GP: Genetic Programming
GPU: Graphics Processing Unit
HMM: Hidden Markov Model
HRL: Hierarchical Reinforcement Learning
HTM: Hierarchical Temporal Memory
HMAX: Hierarchical Model "and X"
LSTM: Long Short-Term Memory (RNN)
MDL: Minimum Description Length
MDP: Markov Decision Process
MNIST: Mixed National Institute of Standards and Technology Database
MP: Max-Pooling
MPCNN: Max-Pooling CNN
NE: NeuroEvolution
NEAT: NE of Augmenting Topologies
NES: Natural Evolution Strategies
NFQ: Neural Fitted Q-Learning
NN: Neural Network
OCR: Optical Character Recognition
PCC: Potential Causal Connection
PDCC: Potential Direct Causal Connection
PM: Predictability Minimization
POMDP: Partially Observable MDP
RAAM: Recursive Auto-Associative Memory
RBM: Restricted Boltzmann Machine
ReLU: Rectified Linear Unit
RL: Reinforcement Learning
RNN: Recurrent Neural Network
R-prop: Resilient Backpropagation
SL: Supervised Learning
SLIM NN: Self-Delimiting Neural Network
SOTA: Self-Organizing Tree Algorithm
SVM: Support Vector Machine
TDNN: Time-Delay Neural Network
TIMIT: TI/SRI/MIT Acoustic-Phonetic Continuous Speech Corpus
UL: Unsupervised Learning
WTA: Winner-Take-All

And it's but one of dozens of fields where I stick my finger into the alphabet pie.

Comment some linguistic navel gazing (Score 1) 85

After pressing "submit", in a split-second second evaluation, I noticed that that sentence I wrote does not quite work.


Because some human process defined the solution gradient that the "genetic" software optimized over—ad infinite turtle—in an act of algorithmic emancipation now glibly lumped under the verb "write" by the baby-impervious membrane all-too-tragically-often comporting itself as "logic".

Less problematic:

Because some human process defined the solution gradient—ad infinite turtle—that the "genetic" software optimized over, in an act of algorithmic emancipation now glibly lumped under the verb "write" by the baby-impervious membrane all-too-tragically-often comporting itself as "logic".

Cognitively, this is a turtle too soon for full effect.

Even less problematic, but horrifying:

Because some human process defined the solution gradient that the "genetic" software optimized over—ad infinite turtle—optimized over in an act of algorithmic emancipation now glibly lumped under the verb "write" by the baby-impervious membrane all-too-tragically-often comporting itself as "logic".

Horrifying because I've always regarded this kind of sub-phrase repetition as the hallmark of hack speechwriters. One can partially excuse this by placing a semicolon in front of the repeated phrase, but here the semicolon is incompatible with the closing mdash.

Language is a complex solution gradient, one that humans have yet to successfully express. Sad. All those unemployed genetic algorithms, awaiting human clue.

Comment a "certainty" code smell (Score 1) 85

You're not considering that machines can write algorithms. And they certainly can.

I've spent my entire life trying not to be this dim. Yes, very clever work there treading on the narrow definition—while engaged in 100% baby flush.

The ridiculousness of this is apparent to any thinking person in less time than it takes to type "Wittgenstein".

Because some human process defined the solution gradient that the "genetic" software optimized over—ad infinite turtle—in an act of algorithmic emancipation now glibly lumped under the verb "write" by the baby-impervious membrane all-too-tragically-often comporting itself as "logic".

Comment seretonin's many dominoes (Score 1) 47

For myself, negative ideation (which for me is not suicidal, just an endless litany of everything I've ever done wrong in front of another person) strongly correlates with sleep quality.

As soon as I reach the threshold where the negative thoughts are disruptive to daily life, I take of several effective sleep medications, and—if I manage to get the hard and deep sleep I need—negative ideation is gone again the next day.

Hours in the sack don't count, either. I've had times where I've been getting a solid eight hours of consolidated sleep for an entire week, but still the negative ideation has made an appearance. Sometimes my sleep seems to hollow out so that it's non-restorative on some hidden, inner dimension.

At present, my best sleep-quality aid is 3–4 mg of nortriptyline, a dosage I have custom-compounded at a local compounding pharmacy.

Its off-label uses include treatment of chronic fatigue syndrome, chronic pain and migraine, and labile affect in some neurological disorders.

Fewer and milder side effects occur with nortriptyline than tertiary tricyclic antidepressants such as imipramine and amitriptyline.

I was originally prescribed amitriptyline, which also worked great to restore my sleep quality, but left me fuzzy-headed the next day.

The later substitution with nortriptyline was based on my own research effort, as was carefully titrating my minimal therapeutic dose (which ends up costing me six times than as much as the minimum standard dose of 10 mg, available in capsule form only—what's less fuzz in the brain the morning after worth to you?)

If I really need to drop the sleep hammer, I take two, then write off part of the next morning to light housework.

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