As Craig Silverstein was talking yesterday, I thought of Marvin Minsky the father and grand promoter of Artificial Intelligence at MIT. Not because Google uses very smart AI, but because they don’t do much of it at all.
Folks on the East Coast (overgeneralizing for effect) grabbed the Minsky challenge to create a machine intelligence that mimics and surpasses human intelligence. Afterall, machines can operate, doing certain functions, much more quickly and accurately than humans. Minsky-ites were also influenced by MIT linguists like Chomsky who pushed that concepts of deep structure that could be handled, if properly understood, by machines.
The more intelligently that the system could learn from the results noted as relevant, the better the subsequent result sets. Aggregating group results gave even better “Good” results and seemed magic (at the time) compared to simple keyword searches.
Larry Page’s insight in constructing PageRank was to see that goodness could also be indicated by the number of links related to a certain document. Again capturing the human intelligence embedded in the act of linking. Not just human intelligence but social intelligence. What we call knowledge capital or in a larger sense social capital.
Successful searches moved from less modeling of the brain, less artificial intelligence, and more and more social intelligence and what we now see in Web 2.0 as social networking. Not that computing and engineering didn’t matter, but that the machine component is most effective as a magnifier and enhancer and connector of the social intelligence supplied by humans.
What: North Carolina Science Blogging Conference When: January 20, 2007 from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Where: UNC-Chapel Hill (building and room to be announced) Preconference:So You Want to be a Blogger skills session on Thursday, January 18th from 2-4 p.m. at the UNC Health Science Library
Note: ibiblio.org is proud to be one of the sponsors for the North Carolina Bloggers Conference and I’m delighted to be one of the organizers helping out Anton Zuiker, Bora Zivkovic, and Brian Russell.
In the spirit of Openness, please dear readers and potential attendees, use the comments here to let me know any specific questions or areas that you’d like to see covered. I don’t want to talk endlessly on the differences between GPL 2 and 3, for example, unless someone cares, but then if someone does I want to be sure to be prepared and to do a good job.
CRAIG SILVERSTEIN Google‘s Tech Director will be speaking on Thursday, October 26 from 4 – 5:30 at the Medical Biomolecular Research Building here at UNC-CH. Details here.
Dan Gillmor is director of the Center for Citizen Media, a project affiliated with Harvard University’s Berkman Center for Internet & Society and the University of California-Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism.
He is the author of We the Media: Grassroots Journalism by the People, for the People (2004; O’Reilly Media). Dan likes to say that he “spent almost 25 years in the newspaper business, and am proud of it.”
He’ll be visiting the UNC J-School and giving a public talk at 4 pm Monday November 13 in the Pleasants Family Room, Wilson Library, UNC-CH.
A little sidebar gives brief voice to other local bloggers, most of whom I didn’t know, Sue Sturgis, Nancy Baker, Chris Anderson (of Lulu and Raleighing, not of Long Tail) and Gary Kueber. NandO does link to each of their blogs showing good form.
But try to find the stories on the News and Observer web site, where one might expect to see them prominently displayed. You can’t find them at all! You can barely find the Q section even if, like me, you were looking for it. NandO’s content-ignorant layout jambs the Q under Local and State in on the main page with no description or content revealed and under News as well as State and Local on the pull-down. Q however is more of an Opinion/Features/Forum section. Not exactly News and not entirely Local and State (although there are local interests and sources). Inconsistant as well as hidden from the folks who might want to read and react or just read and appreciate the discussions.
“2. Solicitation and distribution of literature or handbills is prohibited except as specifically authorized as part of a Weaver Street Market event.*
*WSM will sponsor a monthly event for non-profit-making organizations with values consistent with its mission to have tables and make their literature available according to guidelines set forth for this purpose.”
[I am trying to imagine handbill day at the Weave now.]
“3. Loitering is prohibited.” [staying a bit too long is part of what a third place is about, isn't it?]
“5. Unauthorized performances and unauthorized large or publicly advertised gatherings are prohibited. “Performance” means any activity intending to attract or having the effect of attracting a crowd of spectators, or that’s volume disturbs others. Performances need to have the advance written permission of Carr Mill Mall.”
A bit from a Finnish newspaper about the Dalai Lama in which he says that his successor could 1) be chosen by election or by the traditional reincarnation method and that 2) his successor could be a woman — even a Finnish woman. He sent a warning to the Chinese about the delicate environment of the Himalayas. His final message in the interview: “Live happy and spread happiness around you”Xeni link here.
The developers of TorPark, a USB portable Tor tunnel builder, have dedicated their latest release to the Panchen Lama Gedhun Choekyi Nyima. One of the Panchen Lama’s supporter wrote to the Torpark team with news of an open reward for $30,000 (USD) for anyone who establishes contact with the abducted religious figure – reports Xeni.
Here’s how TorPark describes itself: Torpark launchs a Tor circuit connection, which creates an encrypted tunnel from your computer indirectly to a Tor exit computer, allowing you to surf the internet anonymously.