Why, you might ask, did I see this. Well, I have a Google news alert for the phrase “suspicious package”, which I have tracked for years and use as a proxy for general societal nervousness: the more nervous people are, the more suspicious packages they report. That is where the above showed up today.
Spoke to a brilliant machine learning scientist recently, among the smartest I’ve ever met, and I found out they were doing … optimization on affinity programs. It was depressing.
“The best minds of my generation are thinking about how to make people click ads. That sucks.”
– Jeff Hammerbacher (quoted in Bloomberg BusinessWeek)
Dr Strangelove feeling more like a documentary than ever, really.
I had a long discussion today about the Japanese internment camp at Manzanar and its variants, past, present, and future.
People overestimate the desirability of stupid people being uniformly stupid in the same way about the same things. Like in all ecosystems, the diversity of stupidity in most countries, and in this one in particular, is a source of perverse resilience.