A site devoted to discussing techniques that promote quality and ethical practices in software development.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Hallelujah - Well said

Well this is not a religious blog post but an echo of total support of Jaron Lanier's comments:
Yet we continue to overestimate the potential of computers and the web to behave intelligently, talking down the power of our own brains and consciousness and talking up the abilities of the machines.

"People often make themselves stupid to make the machines seem smart," says Lanier. "We are flooded with information but the only reason we are flooded with information is that the people who designed the software systems don't know the difference between quantity and quality. So if you design something like Twitter where people are encouraged to say, 'Oh, I just had a sandwich', then of course it will be flooded. To design systems like that and then to say, 'Now we have this intelligent software to filter it,' is ridiculous."
People thinks computer is smart being able to do all these calculations and marvelous things not realizing that it is the human brain that creates all these programs.

How many time people sing praises about how powerful Google/Bing search engines are but not realizing how simplistic their approach is. Give your search engine a search criteria that contains phrases that you want to include (may or may not have to presented in the given order) but excluding other given ones to see how relevant are the search results come back. Human do not search things just be the present of atomic words with no regards to ordering?

If you do not believe me, try to search the Net for manual method for removing some stubborn malware. You will be bombarded by sales pitch stuff, jamming your web browsers with totally irrelevant scan reports, and things disguised as helpful tools but in fact rogue security software. The only thing missing, if not like find a needle in a haystack, is the really useful manual removable technique supported by proper technical explanation (not it just works) from authority in the matter. The quality of the Net has definitely gone downhill.

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