Four short links: 31 July 2017

Statistics & Fiction, Staying Anonymous, Attacking Machine Learning, and Digital Native is Fiction

By Nat Torkington
July 31, 2017
  1. The Heretical Things Statistics Tell Us About Fiction (New Yorker) — Almost without fail, the words evoke their authors’ affinities and manias. John Cheever favors “venereal”—a perfect encapsulation of his urbane midcentury erotics, tinged with morality. Isaac Asimov prefers “terminus,” a word ensconced in a swooping, stately futurism; Woolf has her “mantelpiece,” Wharton her “compunction.” (Melville’s “sperm” is somewhat misleading, perhaps, when separated from his whales.)
  2. Things Not to Do When Anonymous — so many ways to surrender anonymity, so difficult to remain anonymous.
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  4. Robust Physical-World Attacks on Machine Learning ModelsOur algorithm can create spatially constrained perturbations that mimic vandalism or art to reduce the likelihood of detection by a casual observer. We show that adversarial examples generated by RP2 achieve high success rates under various conditions for real road sign recognition by using an evaluation methodology that captures physical world conditions. We physically realized and evaluated two attacks, one that causes a stop sign to be misclassified as a speed limit sign in 100% of the testing conditions, and one that causes a right turn sign to be misclassified as either a stop or added lane sign in 100% of the testing conditions.
  5. The Digital Native is a Myth (Nature) — The younger generation uses technology in the same ways as older people—and is no better at multitasking.
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