Boing Boing 

The (real) hard problem of AI

It's not making software that can solve our problems: it's figuring out how to pose those problems so that the software doesn't bite us in the ass.

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Latent doglizards of cheeseglopping pizza-ads

Take one Google Inceptionism neural-net system, which, when fed its own output over and over, begins to hallucinate dogish-lizardoids in random noise; add one supercut of cheese-porn pizza ads; stir thoroughly and strain. (via JWZ)

Fhtagn! The inceptionized route from noise to latent doglizards, in 5:36

Take Google Research's "inceptionism" white-paper on AI-based pattern matching and feed it random noise, then recurse the output over and over, and the deep doglizards of reality come out to play.

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Calvin and Markov: text-chaining new, weird computer humor


Josh Millard's Calvin and Markov uses a small perl script to mine transcripts of Calvin and Hobbes strips using Markov chains to make new, weird, computer humor.

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Not a bug


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The Y2Gay Problem


A meditation on the problem of updating bureaucracies' databases that presently only support reciprocal "husband-wife" relationships, but not "husband-husband" or "wife-wife".

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Teaching image-recognition algorithms to produce nightmarish hellscapes


In "Inceptionism," scientists at Google Research describe their work training neural nets with sets of images, then tweaking the "layers" of neural net nodes to produce weird outcomes.

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Rudy Rucker's massive volume of journals now out!

Rudy Rucker -- mathematician, cyberpunk, computer scientist, gonzo hoopy frood happy mutant -- has released an 828 page volume of his journals!

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FBI's crypto backdoor plans require them to win the war on general purpose computing


The FBI wants backdoors in all your crypto, and UK Prime Minister David Cameron made backdoors an election promise, but as Stanford lawyer/computer scientist Jonathan Mayer writes, there's no way to effectively backdoor modern platforms without abolishing the whole idea of computers as we know them, replacing them with an imaginary and totalitarian computing ecosystem that does not exist and probably never will.

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Byzantine fault-tolerance considered harmful


No matter what we do to make out networks better, we make them worse.

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Kickstarting a new volume of Rudy Rucker's journals


The wild and talented cyberpunk original Rudy Rucker is kickstarting a volume of his journals, from 1990-2014, inspired by Kafka's journals, and "as long as three or four novels put together."

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Your voice-to-text speech is recorded and sent to strangers


Redditor Fallenmyst just started a job at Walk N'talk Technologies, where she listens to randomly sampled speech-to-text recordings from our mobile phones, correcting machine conversions.

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Lauren Ipsum: The Phantom Tollbooth meets Young Ladies' Illustrated Primer

Lauren Ipsum is an absolutely brilliant kids' book about computer science, and it never mentions computer science—it's a series of witty, charming, and educational parables about the fundamentals that underpin the discipline.Read the rest

Algorithmic cruelty


With its special end-of-year message, Facebook wants to show you, over and over, what your year "looked like"; in Eric Meyer's case, the photo was of his daughter, who died this year: "For those of us who lived through the death of loved ones, or spent extended time in the hospital, or were hit by divorce or losing a job or any one of a hundred crises, we might not want another look at this past year."

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Algorithmically evolved masks that appear as faces to facial-recognition software


Sterling Crispin uses evolutionary algorithms to produce masks that satisfy facial recognition algorithms: "my goal is to show the machine what it’s looking for, to hold a mirror up to the all-seeing eye of the digital-panopticon we live in and let it stare back into its own mind."

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Tldrbot: great works of literature in seconds

Tldrbot is the latest bot from Shardcore (previously, previously, previously) that slurps up great novels, algorithmically summarizes them to 1% of their length, then spits out audio files of a synthetic Scottish woman's voice reading those summaries aloud.

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Sock-puppet- and traffic-analysis-resistant group conversation protocol

Dissent implements the Dining Cryptographers and Verifiable Shuffling algorithms to produce a group-conversation system that is resistant to traffic analysis. Feels like we're entering the second golden age of cypherpunk.

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