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Apr 21, 2017

4.19: future perfect; judicial decisions; tech sanctuaries


updates and ideas from the D&S community and beyond

JOBS: Fellowship Manager (Part-Time, Open Until Filled)

Do you have deep experience in program design and management, community-building, and mentorship? Apply now!

Around the Institute

Call for Applications: “Future Perfect” Conference

On June 16, 2017, Data & Society’s Speculative Fiction Reading Group will host Future Perfect, a conference exploring the use, significance, and discontents of speculative design, narrative, and world-building in technology, policy, and culture.

Apply by May 12! Guidelines for submissions can be found here.

Machine learning is being used to uncover the mass graves of Mexico’s missing

“If the [Human Rights Data Analysis Group] model works as well as they hope, it will be a powerful application of an emerging technology that provides answers to one of the most difficult aspects of the desaparecidos problem: knowing where to look.”—Mimi Onuoha

Creating Simple Rules for Complex Decisions 

“Replicating our analysis [of judicial decisions] in 22 varied domains, we found that this phenomenon holds: Simple, transparent decision rules often perform on par with complex, opaque machine learning methods.”—Jongbin Jung, Connor Concannon, Ravi Shroff, Sharad Goel, Daniel G. Goldstein

Is it Time for a Tech Sanctuary Movement?

“One big question animated the conversation: What, practically, can Tech do to protect vulnerable communities?” —Catherine Bracy

Around the Around

New Technology Is Built on a ‘Stack.’ Is That the Best Way to Understand Everything Else, Too?

“But if tech start-ups continue to broaden their ambitions and challenge new industries — if, as the venture-capital firm Andreessen-Horowitz likes to say, ‘software is eating the world’ — then the logic of the stack can’t be trailing far behind, ready to remake more and more of our economy and our culture in its image.” —John Herrman

How (Not) to Talk about AI

“The language of software or tools, on the other hand, is perhaps a better descriptor of the technology itself but Silicon Valley has made it into a politically neutral term; a term that emphasizes the autonomy and creativity of individuals while downplaying the powerful capitalist logics underneath.” —Shreeharsh Kelkar