Search found 87 matches

by ThinkingRunner
Wed Feb 16, 2011 1:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: IBM's Watson on Jeopardy tonight
Replies: 210
Views: 16881

2) trainable rules-based systems - Watson, Google Translate, modern search engines - inputs and outputs are processed according to fixed rules, but outputs will vary depending on the number and quality of inputs. 3) self-refining systems - ??? - the processing rules for inputs and outputs can be mo...
by ThinkingRunner
Wed Feb 16, 2011 1:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: IBM's Watson on Jeopardy tonight
Replies: 210
Views: 16881

OK, I think I can now categorize the different classes of computer program which different classes of people feel meet the minimum requirement to be called AI. 1) fixed rules-based systems - from pocket calculator to most chess programs to spreadsheets - a given set of inputs will always result in ...
by ThinkingRunner
Wed Feb 16, 2011 12:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: IBM's Watson on Jeopardy tonight
Replies: 210
Views: 16881

No, because your spreadsheet cannot learn, which is a requirement according to the definition of the word "intelligence". Again, if you insist on using your own definitions of words, then I have no argument. If I tried to teach Watson about music or how to solve a quadratic equation (assuming it di...
by ThinkingRunner
Wed Feb 16, 2011 12:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: IBM's Watson on Jeopardy tonight
Replies: 210
Views: 16881

No, because your spreadsheet cannot learn, which is a requirement according to the definition of the word "intelligence". Again, if you insist on using your own definitions of words, then I have no argument. If I tried to teach Watson about music or how to solve a quadratic equation (assuming it di...
by ThinkingRunner
Wed Feb 16, 2011 12:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: IBM's Watson on Jeopardy tonight
Replies: 210
Views: 16881

I would also argue that it really doesn't have the ability to learn in the sense that a human does. Yes you can design it to make new correllations with new datasets, but in reality it is just doing the same thing with a different dataset. It is following explicitly the code that was written for it...
by ThinkingRunner
Wed Feb 16, 2011 10:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: IBM's Watson on Jeopardy tonight
Replies: 210
Views: 16881

To your last question... the computer program has no awareness of self. I don't agree the computer can reason. Can it apply an algorithm to data? Sure thing... but it cannot do whatever it wants. If it has no will, it cannot reason IMO. My dog can disobey, but a computer program can only do what it...
by ThinkingRunner
Wed Feb 16, 2011 7:37 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: IBM's Watson on Jeopardy tonight
Replies: 210
Views: 16881

From some of the responses here, it seems to me that people are grudging Watson's phenomenal performance thus far - it has kicked major butt. Being able to decipher and respond to complex queries in natural language is no mean feat. As someone who works on machine learning problems, it is insulting ...
by ThinkingRunner
Tue Feb 15, 2011 11:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: IBM's Watson on Jeopardy tonight
Replies: 210
Views: 16881

Watson has a fixed method for evaluating a problem. The theoretical limits of Watson's ability are the limits of that method. Adding data points might bring you closer to that limit for a while, but at some point it will hit the limit and adding additional data will do nothing to improve its result...
by ThinkingRunner
Tue Feb 15, 2011 8:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: iMac - to switch or not ???
Replies: 113
Views: 9986

Try typing this into your windows 7 X11 window: ls -lrt * report back what you get. I still use Win XP. I've got: -r-xr-x---+ 1 Administrators SYSTEM 47564 2004-08-03 23:38 NTDETECT.COM -rwxrwx---+ 1 Administrators SYSTEM 843 2007-11-07 07:00 install.ini .... And then hundrends of other files.... S...
by ThinkingRunner
Tue Feb 15, 2011 6:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: IBM's Watson on Jeopardy tonight
Replies: 210
Views: 16881

You are incorrect in this assumption. Machine learning systems do in fact learn by discovering patterns automatically from data. They don't need humans to tell them that "dairy" and "milk" are related entities - the learning algorithm gauges these associations from data *without* human supervision ...
by ThinkingRunner
Tue Feb 15, 2011 6:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: IBM's Watson on Jeopardy tonight
Replies: 210
Views: 16881

In fact, it is possible to imagine that if you 'created' several identical Watson-clones and then exposed them to different data sets over different time periods that they would be perform very differently at game shows. This is not intelligence, it's still completely deterministic. Now if you take...
by ThinkingRunner
Tue Feb 15, 2011 5:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: IBM's Watson on Jeopardy tonight
Replies: 210
Views: 16881

Eh, just because Watson does not understand the meaning of _all_ the 'answers' and gets things wrong does not mean that it does not 'understand' some of it. The difference between a dumb computer program that just runs a simple memory-less algorithm and something like Watson is its ability to learn...
by ThinkingRunner
Mon Feb 14, 2011 11:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: IBM's Watson on Jeopardy tonight
Replies: 210
Views: 16881

I noted that Watson did really well on some categories (for which presumably rich training resources were available, narrowing the solution space) and not so well on others. The questions it missed were interesting. I thought they clearly showed that the machine was producing correct responses with...
by ThinkingRunner
Mon Feb 14, 2011 8:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: IBM's Watson on Jeopardy tonight
Replies: 210
Views: 16881

During the second half, I was also puzzled because the human contestants were winning rounds in which the screen overlay showed that Watson apparently had the right answer. Apparently Watson was just slightly too slow each time. Behind the scenes, was the director saying to the technicians, "OK, 90...
by ThinkingRunner
Mon Feb 14, 2011 5:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: IBM's Watson on Jeopardy tonight
Replies: 210
Views: 16881

Natural language processing (NLP) and speech recognition are my areas of expertise, and I can attest to the fact that these are incredibly hard problems. State-of-the-art systems are not rule-based (the latter are brittle and don't generalize well at all), but are statistically driven. In other word...
by ThinkingRunner
Sun Feb 06, 2011 11:08 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: if you are (were) renting..
Replies: 52
Views: 5790

Re: if you are (were) renting..

Location, location, location. $2400 for a 600sqft 1br in Manhattan. Don't gasp - I have friends paying the same for a studio :) I have a 600 square foot garage. Fits a boat, two SUVs, all my outdoor equipment, a workshop and a home gym. (Although I confess I have to back one car out to do any serio...
by ThinkingRunner
Sun Jan 23, 2011 8:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tokyo day trip (or two)
Replies: 5
Views: 1222

Nikko is a great place to visit - couple of hours from Tokyo by train. It's up in the mountains, has some really good shrines dating from the Tokugawa Shogunate. A bus takes you further into the Nikko National Park, up to Lake Chuzen-ji (a volcanic crater lake), and on to Yumoto Onsen, which houses ...
by ThinkingRunner
Wed Jan 05, 2011 10:15 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: how many of you are distance runners?
Replies: 75
Views: 8300

http://www.runningahead.com <= Great site for runners So far, I've participated in 5km, 4 mile, 8km, 5 mile, 10km, 15km, half marathon, 25k, 20 mile, marathon, and long distance relays (>200 miles). Majority of the time, I run a leisurely 9-10 min/mile. I need to look into training plans and work a...
by ThinkingRunner
Wed Jan 05, 2011 10:05 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: how many of you are distance runners?
Replies: 75
Views: 8300

Re: how many of you are distance runners?

Judging by the user names, there are quite a few of us out there. Any of you run marathons and if so, what is your best time? Feel free to fudge it a bit to preserve your anonymity. I run 5Ks these days because that is the most common road race in my area and I only run 15-30 miles/week. I've run 1...
by ThinkingRunner
Tue Dec 21, 2010 1:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Strategy for switching cellphone carrier with data plans
Replies: 1
Views: 527

If you don't call each other a lot (i.e. don't need unlimited mobile-to-mobile) and are willing to change carriers, I can suggest the following: 1) If you don't need data, switch yourself to T-mobile pay as you go. 2) Switch your wife to Virgin Mobile's Beyond Talk plan. $25/month gets you 300 minut...
by ThinkingRunner
Fri Dec 17, 2010 12:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Gawker media Hack - Another reason not to reuse passwords
Replies: 25
Views: 4261

I like pwsafe. Free, open source. http://passwordsafe.sourceforge.net/ Is open source a good thing in this case? It certainly is. With a proprietary version, you run the significant risk of a disgruntled employee inserting a backdoor in the code without anyone's knowledge. You have no idea what the...
by ThinkingRunner
Fri Dec 17, 2010 9:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Probability Question
Replies: 45
Views: 3959

Re: Roulette wheel spins red for two weeks

That's the contradiction/paradox, how do we have a situation where X is very, very rare, but Y doesn't matter? If long streaks are "rare" than by definition after 20 heads, tails should be due. (or at least have better odds) A math guy will tell you they are unrelated, however if that's true there ...
by ThinkingRunner
Thu Dec 16, 2010 1:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Probability Question
Replies: 45
Views: 3959

Re: Roulette wheel spins red for two weeks

That's the contradiction/paradox, how do we have a situation where X is very, very rare, but Y doesn't matter? If long streaks are "rare" than by definition after 20 heads, tails should be due. (or at least have better odds) A math guy will tell you they are unrelated, however if that's true there ...
by ThinkingRunner
Thu Dec 16, 2010 12:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Probability Question
Replies: 45
Views: 3959

Re: Roulette wheel spins red for two weeks

That's the contradiction/paradox, how do we have a situation where X is very, very rare, but Y doesn't matter? If long streaks are "rare" than by definition after 20 heads, tails should be due. (or at least have better odds) A math guy will tell you they are unrelated, however if that's true there ...
by ThinkingRunner
Sat Nov 27, 2010 12:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Straight Talk Phone Service
Replies: 23
Views: 5285

If you want a smartphone and full web/email access, you should check out Virgin Mobile's Beyond Talk plans. $25 gets you 300 minutes and $40 gets you 1200 minutes, both with unlimited data and text. They currently offer one Android phone, Samsung Intercept, that isn't crippled or locked down in any ...
by ThinkingRunner
Tue Nov 16, 2010 10:23 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone with experience using Virgin Mobile as a carrier?
Replies: 3
Views: 873

If you have good coverage and don't rely on customer service too much, they can be a great deal. Recently got my wife an Android phone (Samsung Intercept) and switched her to the $25/month unlimited data + text + 300 mins plan. Working OK so far, poor signal within our apartment, even though the cov...
by ThinkingRunner
Sun Nov 14, 2010 4:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Get an iPad now or wait awhile?
Replies: 30
Views: 5303

You can consider the Samsung Galaxy Tab, which, with a 7-inch screen, is far more portable than the iPad. It runs Android, has a front and rear-facing camera for video chatting, and can even make phone calls via speaker phone or plug-in headphones. And, it does Flash, has USB, and everything else yo...
by ThinkingRunner
Sun Nov 14, 2010 12:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: cable bill surprise
Replies: 48
Views: 6554

Sounds similar to this guy's kid who purchased $1300 worth of "Fish Bucks" on a iPhone game, which was charged to the credit card on file.

http://www.fatwallet.com/forums/finance/1016017/

Moral of the story, avoid storing your credit card on file with these companies as far as possible.
by ThinkingRunner
Wed Nov 10, 2010 11:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Are Macs that much easier than Windows Machines?
Replies: 238
Views: 21787

Your FUD was in implying that it was difficult to install Quicken, as difficult as installing ubuntu. :) I didn't say to search for "problem with," I specifically used "error installing." You chose to search for something irrelevant and use it in your argument about installation, a clear straw man....
by ThinkingRunner
Tue Nov 09, 2010 2:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Worth upgrading Windows 7 32 bit to 64bit?
Replies: 32
Views: 3402

Question - if you have a 64 bit machine with more than 4 gigs, say 8 gigs, can you access all that memory from a 32 bit application? It's the OS that controls memory access, not the application. So the answer is yes, so long as your OS is 64-bit. With the caveat that your 32-bit application cannot ...
by ThinkingRunner
Sun Sep 05, 2010 5:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What kind of bicycle to purchase?
Replies: 131
Views: 17244

Re: What kind of bicycle to purchase?

My doctor has recommended that I ride a bicycle for daily exercise. I am in my mid sixties, haven't ridden a bike for a number of years, and live in an area that is relatively flat ( and the roads are safe). I went to Target to look at bikes and realized there a number of different types; some moun...
by ThinkingRunner
Fri Sep 03, 2010 3:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: cheap desktop computer for the kids?
Replies: 37
Views: 5331

You might want to consider refurbished or open box items at electronics stores. I was able to score a quad-core desktop with 8GB memory for $330, less than half the retail price. If you have a MicroCenter near you, they often have great deals on open box and refurbished items. See, for example, http...
by ThinkingRunner
Tue Aug 31, 2010 12:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I bought my computer
Replies: 40
Views: 4335

Re: I bought my computer

When I read threads like this, I'm reminded of why I prefer to spend my money on Macs. no kidding. just read the rest of this thread. what a nightmare. but I agree we should leave them to their self-flagellation. Ah, the smug superiority of Mac users as illustrated above is reason enough to buy Win...
by ThinkingRunner
Mon Aug 02, 2010 4:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: To Mac or not to Mac? That is the question...
Replies: 304
Views: 29328

[quote="bearwolf"][quote="epilnk"][quote="ThinkingRunner"]Typical Mac snobbery from those that have been brainwashed by Steve Jobs.[/quote] Oh for heaven's sake. Having an opinion different from yours is not evidence of brainwashing. Those of us who use macs are not doing so based on an advertising ...
by ThinkingRunner
Mon Aug 02, 2010 11:22 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: To Mac or not to Mac? That is the question...
Replies: 304
Views: 29328

[quote="Indices"]The PC defenders are starting to sound like abused wives. They defend their abusive husband (the PC) through several actions. 1. My PC has problems, but my expertise in computers enables me to take care of the problems when they come up. A normal user would ask, why can't I have a w...
by ThinkingRunner
Sat Jul 31, 2010 10:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: To Mac or not to Mac? That is the question...
Replies: 304
Views: 29328

I have no clue why so many people's PCs aqcuire junk and crash all the time. I spent an hour or so cleaning up unnecessary OEM software when I purchased my $400 Compaq (HP) laptop, installed AVG anti-virus and made sure my security settings were in order. It runs the much-maligned Windows Vista like...
by ThinkingRunner
Mon Sep 28, 2009 11:38 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mac vs PC
Replies: 127
Views: 20343

Loosen up, Mac diehards! All you need to do to run Windows safely is to install a good firewall and antivirus program (AVG is excellent, updates itself everyday, and is free to boot), not visit suspect websites, and refrain from clicking on unknown links. It really isn't that difficult, I've enjoyed...