Can Machines Decide What’s Worthwhile?

Is it Worthwhile? As a graduate student I periodically attended talks in the mathematics department. It would always be the same. A professor in the department would introduce the speaker. The speaker would read from a sheaf of papers and occasionally write or draw on the chalkboard. After an hour the speaker would finish and…

How is Learning Even Possible?

By Jitendra Subramanyam We’re surrounded by the successes of machine learning. Self driving cars, sophisticated translation, being able to tell Alexa what music we want…. These sucessses are real, yet for most of us (myself included), they seem magical. As the science fiction writer Arthur Clarke wrote in 1973, “Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable…