Mobile phone theft is a pain in the backside. It used to be that you would lose little more than the 50 or so SMS that your phone could store, and the phone numbers of those not in your immediate social circle. Of course, the mobile phone was superseded by the smart phone. I use … [Read more…]
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Sam Harris gave an excellent and rather smoothly delivered talk in Alberta last year on the dangers of AI. More specifically he talked about the dangers of reaching the point where we create a genuinely super-intelligent AI before we know how to do that in a safe manner. I won’t ruin his talk by simply … [Read more…]
In 1956, America witnessed a watershed moment in aviation safety. A mid-air collision between two airliners over the Grand Canyon resulted in sweeping changes to safety regulations, and to the creation of the FAA as it exists today. Technology has moved on significantly since then, and we have a multitude of technological and administrative controls … [Read more…]
I love situations where the utterly unexpected is thrown at you, and through a blinding moment of genius you come up with the solution that nobody would have even dreamt of. The Apollo 13 recovery is perhaps one of the greatest examples of just such a moment, or at least one such moment with great … [Read more…]
Following on from my earlier post on MapReduce and attacking large datasets to answer analytical questions I began looking around for sources of data to experiment on myself. As luck would have it, the good city and county of San Francisco make vast volumes of data available for anyone who wants to use it. I’ve … [Read more…]
I’ll be the firs to admit that despite it having been around for over ten years now, I’ve been generally “blind” to MapReduce and Big Data per se. That is, I’ve experience working with large datasets, but always through a nice and intuitive GUI designed to allow people like me to spot the malicious activity … [Read more…]
I have learned in my line of work that sometimes things seem almost impossible when viewed as a single monolithic task. Take, as an example from history, “I want you to build a huge wall spanning thousands of miles that will keep out the Mongol raiders“. Pretty damn daunting. But you can break that down into … [Read more…]