Why we mustn’t be slaves to the algorithm

There’s a huge buzz around the marvels of machine learning, but computers are only as good as the biased data we feed them Research has revealed that data culled from social media sites like Facebook contains embedded biases. Photograph: Kay Nietfeld/AFP/Getty Images The tech craze du jour is machine learning (ML). Billions of dollars of venture capital are being poured into it. All the big tech companies are deep into it. Every computer science student doing a PhD on it is assured of lucrative employment after graduation at his or her pick of technology companies. One of the most popular courses at Stanford is CS229: Machine Learning. Newspapers and magazines extol the wonders of the technology. ML is the magic sauce that enables Amazon to know what you might want…


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