weekly reel February 11, 2024

Yowdy frendz. This week’s music is the Outer Wilds OST.

Outer Wilds: Echoes of the Eye (The Lost Reels) by Andrew Prahlow (bandcamp.com)


NJB: More highway lanes are (still) a bad thing.

David Policar: They’re made out of meat.

Kottke: Concha García Zaera’s MSPaint paintings.

RobWords: Words we’ve ruined.

xkcd: Relationship advice, Log cabin.

SMBC: Cult, Temperature.


Anil Dash: “Wherever you get your podcasts” is a radical statement.


François Chollet:

People seem to be falling for two rather thoughtless extremes:

  1. “LLMs are AGI, they work like the human brain, they can reason, etc.”
  2. “LLMs are dumb and useless.”

The reality is that LLMs are not AGI — they're a big curve fit to a very large dataset. They work via memorization and interpolation. But that interpolative curve can be tremendously useful, if you want to automate a known task that’s a match for its training data distribution.

Memorization works, as long as you don’t need to adapt to novelty. You don’t need intelligence to achieve usefulness across a set of known, fixed scenarios.

In fact, that’s the entire story of the field of AI so far: achieve increasing levels of usefulness and automation, while bypassing the problem of creating intelligence.

GOODY-2 😄.

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