Links for 2017-04-20

  • Amazon DynamoDB Accelerator (DAX)

    Amazon DynamoDB Accelerator (DAX) is a fully managed, highly available, in-memory cache for DynamoDB that delivers up to a 10x performance improvement – from milliseconds to microseconds – even at millions of requests per second. DAX does all the heavy lifting required to add in-memory acceleration to your DynamoDB tables, without requiring developers to manage cache invalidation, data population, or cluster management.
    No latency percentile figures, unfortunately. Also still in preview.

    (tags: amazon dynamodb aws dax performance storage databases latency low-latency)

  • I Just Love This Juicero Story So Much

    When we signed up to pump money into this juice company, it was because we thought drinking the juice would be a lot harder and more expensive. That was the selling point, because Silicon Valley is a stupid libertarian dystopia where investor-class vampires are the consumers and a regular person’s money is what they go shopping for. Easily opened bags of juice do not give these awful nightmare trash parasites a good bargain on the disposable income of credulous wellness-fad suckers; therefore easily opened bags of juice are a worse investment than bags of juice that are harder to open.

    (tags: juicero juicebros techbros silicon-valley funny dystopia fruit bags juice)

  • Zeynep Tufekci: Machine intelligence makes human morals more important | TED Talk | TED.com

    Machine intelligence is here, and we’re already using it to make subjective decisions. But the complex way AI grows and improves makes it hard to understand and even harder to control. In this cautionary talk, techno-sociologist Zeynep Tufekci explains how intelligent machines can fail in ways that don’t fit human error patterns — and in ways we won’t expect or be prepared for. “We cannot outsource our responsibilities to machines,” she says. “We must hold on ever tighter to human values and human ethics.”
    More relevant now that nVidia are trialing ML-based self-driving cars in the US…

    (tags: nvidia ai ml machine-learning scary zeynep-tufekci via:maciej technology ted-talks)

  • ‘Mathwashing,’ Facebook and the zeitgeist of data worship

    Fred Benenson: Mathwashing can be thought of using math terms (algorithm, model, etc.) to paper over a more subjective reality. For example, a lot of people believed Facebook was using an unbiased algorithm to determine its trending topics, even if Facebook had previously admitted that humans were involved in the process.

    (tags: maths math mathwashing data big-data algorithms machine-learning bias facebook fred-benenson)

  • Build a Better Monster: Morality, Machine Learning, and Mass Surveillance

    We built the commercial internet by mastering techniques of persuasion and surveillance that we’ve extended to billions of people, including essentially the entire population of the Western democracies. But admitting that this tool of social control might be conducive to authoritarianism is not something we’re ready to face. After all, we’re good people. We like freedom. How could we have built tools that subvert it? As Upton Sinclair said, “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it.” I contend that there are structural reasons to worry about the role of the tech industry in American political life, and that we have only a brief window of time in which to fix this.

    (tags: advertising facebook google internet politics surveillance democracy maciej-ceglowski talks morality machine-learning)

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2 Comments

  1. Posted April 21, 2017 at 10:10 | Permalink

    Juicero, have we reached the tech bubble peak? Love the story, but how is it different from those coffee capsule machines that everyone went crazy about ;p

  2. Posted April 21, 2017 at 13:38 | Permalink

    Hi Conor! http://gizmodo.com/juicero-ceo-begs-you-do-not-open-our-juice-bags-1794507811?rev=1492739000262 has a good point about that:

    ‘You can get almost exactly the same juice without the company’s expensive press by squeezing their damn bags yourself with the hands God gave you.[….] the Juicero CEO […] links to a YouTube search for “keurig without machine,” saying “hacking consumer products is nothing new.” The thing is… it isn’t really a hack to do the thing a product is supposed to do with your bare hands, is it? You can’t brew Keurig coffee by dribbling into the pod.’