Tech Trends – News
On the Chain Reaction podcast this week, we dove into a topic that tends to stir up strong emotions, even from those outside the crypto space — the metaverse. Mercedes Bent, an investor at Lightspeed Venture Partners who focuses on consumer investments in crypto, joined us to unpack this loaded term and explain why she sees its potential. “It’s become like a punching bag,” Bent told TechCrunch. “If you think about the potential of it, and why maybe a geek like me gets excited about it, it’s because there are things you can do [in the metaverse] that you could […]
We recently built the Berkeley Crossword Solver (BCS), the first computer program to beat every human competitor in the world’s top crossword tournament. The BCS combines neural question answering and probabilistic inference to achieve near-perfect performance on most American-style crossword puzzles, like the one shown below: Figure 1: Example American-style crossword puzzle Crosswords are challenging for humans and computers alike. Many clues are vague or underspecified and can’t be answered until crossing constraints are taken into account. While some clues are similar to factoid question answering, others require relational reasoning or understanding difficult wordplay.
The miseducation of algorithms is a critical problem; when artificial intelligence mirrors unconscious thoughts, racism, and biases of the humans who generated these algorithms, it can lead to serious harm. Computer programs, for example, have wrongly flagged Black defendants as twice as likely to reoffend as someone who’s white. When an AI used cost as a proxy for health needs, it falsely named Black patients as healthier than equally sick white ones, as less money was spent on them. Even AI used to write a play relied on using harmful stereotypes for casting. Removing sensitive features from the data seems like […]