Four short links: 24 November 2016
Smart Reply, Serverless, Identifying Criminals, and Programmer Ethics
- Smart Reply for Email (A Paper a Day) — The Smart Reply system generates around 12.9K unique suggestions each day, that collectively belong to about 380 semantic clusters. 31.9% of the suggestions actually get used, from 83.2% of the clusters. “These statistics demonstrate the need to go well beyond a simple system with five or 10 canned responses.” Furthermore, out of all used suggestions, 45% were from the 1st position, 35% from the 2nd position, and 20% from the third position.
- Why All The Fuss About Serverless (Simon Wardley) — Billing by the function not only enables me to see what is being used but also to quickly identify costly areas of my program. […] Everyone talks about “algorithmic management” these days (well, everyone in certain circles I walk in) but if you don’t know the cost of something, its impact on revenue, and how it is changing, then no algorithm is going to help you magic up the answer to the investment decisions you need to make
- Neural Network Identifies Criminals By Their Faces — Xiaolin and Xi say there are three facial features that the neural network uses to make its classification. These are: the curvature of upper lip which is on average 23% larger for criminals than for noncriminals; the distance between two inner corners of the eyes, which is 6% shorter; and the angle between two lines drawn from the tip of the nose to the corners of the mouth, which is 20% smaller. You have to read the paper to learn it has a 6% false-positive rate.
- The Future of Programming (Bob Martin) — we, programmers, are going to have to grow up and define our profession, and that includes ethics, because everything is controlled by software. Democracy, news, jobs, health care, government, police…these jobs have moral dimensions and programmers are being asked to code unethical things. Martin says, “Let’s decide what it means to be a programmer. Civilization depends on us. Civilization doesn’t understand this yet.”