facebook filtering algorithm/ policy causes big commotion (once again)

❗😮 hi all. recently facebook was accused/ implicated in steering news items away from conservative sites. every few years, facebook “faces” these types of PR messes and Zuckerberg is probably nearly a pro at handling them by now. there were a lot of press reverberations.

facebook is like the 800LB gorilla of the media. they embody the “winner takes all” aspect of our economy. most other media outlets are having serious troubles, such as old stalwarts like NYT somewhat “on the ropes”. oh yeah and then there was that crazy gawker judgement recently. hoo, boy!

facebook is rewriting the rules of the media game. much the way that tweaks to googles algorithms cause fat/ huge ripples/ shudders in the mass SEO business (and today, nearly every media outlet is in the SEO business to varying degrees), facebooks small adjustments to their site can have massive repercussions.

its interesting in all this how algorithmic theory is intersecting with media concerns like fairness, impartiality, freedom from censorship, openness, etc… is this a story about algorithms or people? its kind of about the intersection of the two. oh, throw in political pov (right vs left). its a volatile mix. throughout the story, people are grappling with a different landscape. a paradigm shift.

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Ramanujan film, the man who knew infinity

ramanujan.jpghi all. ramanujan is one of the great/ inspiring/ legendary characters out of the pantheon of math heroes and they just released a major hollywood movie on his life starring Dev Patel and Jeremy Irons. its been a few great years lately for geeks of all stripes such as with the facebook movie, google movie, and the Turing movie (just a few that immediately come to mind). am really enjoying this moment in the spotlight or sun. if you are curious about such things, the etymology of geek vs nerd and the relation of “semantic drift” is now documented on dictionary.com, but the short story is that what was once a stigma is now an accolade/ badge of honor.[b15] and lets face it, mathematicians are long close to the stereotypical ultimate geeks. which reminds me of old joke:

Q. how can you tell if a mathematician is extroverted?

A. he looks at your feet while talking to you.

the movie is based on a book by Kanigel now about ~¼ century old (1992).[b14] bought the book as soon as it was available but never did read it! am delighted that the public has rediscovered this great intellectual hero/ prodigy, and some aspects of his story are being played up in the modern age such as the “diversity” angle. we also have a huge mix of indian culture into the US, and indians seem to be overrepresented in the technology field, although have not seen many mention this. india is also a world powerhouse in software outsourcing, although maybe that wave while still moving/ in motion is not as strong after over a decade of very intense rampup. cities such as Bangalore and Hyderabad are miniature foreign Silicon Valleys although ofc the latter is distinctly singular worldwide.

another great ref on Ramanujan is some essays in the amazing book World of Mathematics, 1956.[b13] think may have heard 1st of ramanujan from this book found while browsing the math section of different libraries.

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substantial return of the collatz genetic algorithm attack

hi all, have been holding out on you a bit while writing up other stuff on the blog. finally wrote up (coded) an idea that was nagging at my neurons for quite awhile. enjoyed building the genetic algorithm code to attack collatz from over a year ago, and was thinking of new approaches. since then, have a new bag of tricks such as 8 different hardness algorithms and it was always in the back of my mind to maybe return to a GA approach (now over a year old… time flies!).

wrote up a very complex/ ambitious GA approach within the last few weeks, and was running it for days at a time. it has many features and want to tout/ brag about them at some point, but that would take some more writeup.

was pondering however on why the GA was not really finding much improvement in solutions, and then zoomed into this particular issue that is very much worth sharing/ writing up/ detailing.

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bitcoin 2016—Wright/Nakamoto, advocacy/ advances, analysis, scale problems, international, crime, wall st/ banks/ corps, legal/ regulations, projects, central banks

hi all. wired reported last dec that Craig Wright is Satoshi Nakamoto,[a6] and then followed shortly after saying he “might be a hoaxer”[a13] and motherboard concurred[a10]. there is now a lot of press coverage.[a] a new wave of press coverage just burst forth mainly following on the heels of BBCnews.[a3] however as that article mentions he seems to have convinced other elite bitcoin participants including Andresen and Matonis. he was promptly hit with a tax raid/ confiscation on his properties leading to the natural question of whether he would have been better off without “coming out the closet”.[a9] Nakamoto is thought to be worth about $400M in bitcoins, pseudonymous or not (assuming the keys arent lost!). wright is highly educated, referred to as “australian professor”; [a2] points out he has 2 phds and 8 masters degrees. he says he doesnt care if people believe him or not (but then what is his motivation in disclosure?). the pseudonymous Nakamoto has now been nominated for a Nobel Prize (economics).[a12]

bitcoin technology/ ideology is continuing to advance with some bordering-on-feverish advocacy [b] and more sober/ restrained but still favorable/ optimistic povs.[c] its apparently outperforming currencies based on stability and/or gains [b13]. a new australian political party claims it will improve democracy,[b14] another a “fairer world”,[b10] another wonders if it could replace SWIFT,[c6] even the new yorker looking at it,[c11] and a new coursera course.[c12] a very thorough free article/ analysis showed up in london review of books.[c9] early signs are it seems to evoke a large possible role, maybe bordering on radical/ revolutionary, in remittances[c15] and currency exchange[c16] which are a very big deal in international finance.

scale and misuse/ spam [d9][d10] aspects is an increasingly gaping, bordering on critical problem [d][d13][d15][d17] as exactly as forewarned by Andresen.[d14][d18][d8] bitcoin was not necessarily built to scale early on, although so far its still working. [d4] says its growing 25% faster than early internet growth! there are issues with forked code.[d6][d7] serious academic researchers (Cornell etc) have gotten into the analysis with proposed solutions.[d12][d16]

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start on logic/ binary division/ prime finding via DFA constructions

hi all. this continues/ advances the idea of analysis of bertrands postulate via a CS/ automated thm proving approach.

was looking for some existing code around the internet just to see what has been done. years ago, built multiplication circuits in SAT in both C (early 1990s) and Perl (2000s). alas, neither code is still available. (can really tell that you are all on the edge of your seat for that, lol)

there are some interesting papers on fast modulus calculation using highly tuned hardware such as FPGAs. this turned up in a google search pointing to DTIC, Defense Technical Information Center (US military!) and without a citable link on the site, in contrast to many other papers there.[a2][a3][a4]

hmmm!

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