Crap. I just realized something: I went into IT because it’s easy for me, I navigate structure and abstraction better than most people - not because I find IT that interesting in terms of the problems that we try to solve day-to-day.
I’m much more fascinated and motivated by issues outside the broad IT world, the mix between sociology, psychology, economy and politics. In other words: what really makes a large impact on the world.
So, we need defensive machine learning, a couple of ideas:
- machine learning to haggle with online marketplaces about the best price AND/OR the most environmentally and labour friendly source
- machine learning to break news consumption into it’s own separate thing outside social networks, where truthfulness, trust, and following-up topics is prioritized, this could be as simple as a glorified feed reader
- machine learning to manage email on the client side based on priorities set by the user
It does not have to be perfect, it just has to be more efficient than a human trying to haggle with an algorithm when it comes to a shoe.
A good early example is: ad-blockers. While most ad-blockers do not use machine learning, it’s unequivocally one of the best personal agents anyone has.
No wonder Google has been trying to wage a war on ad-blockers not just from a business but from also a trust perspective.
A large corporation trying to gaslight people into believing “they care more”
Defensive machine learning.
We’re in the midst of a huge shift in power where corporations use machine learning to exploit more and more people.
There are countless examples: harmful social media algorithms, gig economy workers managed by arbitrary, shadowy machine learning driven tools, the disappearance of uniform pricing and the return of haggling (Amazon, Zalando etc set price based on machine learning).
We need defensive machine learning that gives people a chance to shift power back.
TIL: Firefox relay exists:
It’s a good thing for giving services that I don’t particularly care about an email address
Covid, harsh cynicism
"I just wanted to see some people again!" us a really shitty eulogy, you know.
I'm angry at people who don't take covid restrictions seriously
I am so angry! There are so many people who go and visit lots of other folks over these goddamned holidays. Because it's okay, right? Everyone is doing it! So it's okay!
And now we have to explain to our 5 year old kid they can't see their friends for a week, because that's just way too risky.
Luckily, they have far more sense in them then those who nonchalantly go around and spread the disease.
The right headline about that youtube change
...where youtube is planning to hide dislike counts on a video is:
“Youtube furthers extremism with recent tweak”
Or “Youtube makes it even more difficult to spot unreliable content”.
They display ridiculously little trust or reliability information at this point and they are planning to decrease it even further.
Disappointingly it comes across as “oh but we’re preventing negative review bombing”
Yes, that happens but loss of trust signal is worse
EFF's statement on Richard Stallman's re-election to the Free Software Foundation board: https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2021/03/statement-re-election-richard-stallman-fsf-board
Statement on Richard Stallman rejoining the FSF board
old jokes current again
There used to be these jokes about hyperinflation in Hungary.
in the past:
"Oh, you want 150 million milpengo for a coffee? Isn't it a bit expensive to want 160 million milpengo for a coffee? I think one can find better coffee for 170 million milpengos"
"But why should we lock down with 150 7-day-incidence? Shouldn't we protect the economy when we only have 200 7di? Wouldn't vaccines protect us when we're only around 300 7di? Why the rush to close down with 400?"
Is there a search function in the reddit iOS app? For searching a long thread, either client or server side.
I can’t seem to find it. The FAQ for the app is only 4 entries on the reddit help website, one of which explains how to view porn on reddit.
Is this how impoverished we’ve become?
“Shh....don’t try to do something, here look at this cat/incendiary thread/porn....lest you disturb our main metrics for this quarter”
There is a nice example for weaponized language in contracts and politicians:
What native speakers familiar with contract terms understand: you make no guarantees or commitments in the fulfillment of something
What non-native speakers or unfamiliar with this term understand: wow, they committed to maximum effort
So the EU official complaining about AstraZeneca deliveries not being “best effort”: they were exactly that! Bottom-barrel, no guarantees service.
Capitalism, social media, algorithms
Corporate platforms are not a good choice to keep in touch with people you love anyway. Their algorithms are optimized to show you outrageous stuff, market unnecessary things to you, get you "engaged" and invested in the platform to keep you there.
They have no interest in showing you the things you care about most first. Because why would you spend your time doomscrolling if you already got what you need?
It's a capitalist flavor of low key censorship.