Tuesday, September 18, 2018


Laura bought some raw cocoa at the supermarket and took a shot at brownies this afternoon. While not precisely what you would get from the standard mix back in the US, they came out pretty tasty. The main difference was that Laura's were a bit "cake-ier" than a typical brownie, i.e. less dense. That definitely didn't stop us from chowing down on them:
Actually, we didn't eat all of this, Laura took a healthy chunk of them to her language class. Upon her return after class this evening, she reported that her class also enjoyed the brownies.
I stayed home and did math today. I sent an abstract in to present at the Joint Math Meetings in Baltimore in January. Not sure if I'll go, but the deadline was fast approaching and this puts off a final decision for a few more weeks. I also started a new DataCamp class on "deep learning". It's a nice review of neural networks so far. I also read a chapter of Weapons of Math Destruction by Cathy O'Neil. A cautionary book about how governments, corporations, schools and other important social institutions are incorporating computer algorithms into their decision making processes. Many times, these algorithms are biased, poorly constructed, and not well understood--even by their creators. Yet, they are used to inform (and even make) decisions that have real impacts on people's lives. They approve loans, rate teachers, determine sentences for convicted criminals just to name a few things. I'm thinking it would make good reading in an introductory data science course.