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On November 15, 2018, David commented on Grammar(ly): Who sets the rules? :

I love this post – thanks Ben.

Just because writing exists on the internet doesn’t mean it’s good writing. What data would serve as a way of scoring any piece of writing that Grammarly ingests? Is it possible to create a score in that sense without prescribing a particular point of view? The Hemingway App (http://hemingwayapp.com) is a tool I use (and recommend) to people interested in cleaning up a draft, but it favors terse language. I love the philosophical points that you raise – should grammar be objective? Definitive? If you’re curious, here are David Foster Wallace’s thoughts: https://harpers.org/wp-content/uploads/HarpersMagazine-2001-04-0070913.pdf.

On November 15, 2018, David commented on Narrative Science, the Automated Journalism Startup :

Brian this is so interesting, thanks for sharing this story. I read something similar in the book ‘Rise of the Robots’ if you are interested in learning more and totally agree that it is an inevitable trend.

Two thoughts:
1. Our society is increasingly sensitive to terminology journalists use in news coverage, whether the topic is Middle Eastern politics, Women’s issues, or election coverage. I wonder if algorithms are capable of understanding, and continually adapting to, these subtleties. If not, shaping tone could become an even larger part of a journalist’s role, which unfortunately might further undermine our society’s fleeting trust of journalists if they come to be seen as there to add spin.
2. I also wonder if journalists have a role in curation of news stories, given that a journalist might be able to think about curation on more sophisticated levels beyond what will generate the most clicks. Unfortunately, as long as media outlets are funded by advertising, driving clicks will continue to be the norm, which seems to only strengthen the case for using more ML in lieu of journalists.

On November 15, 2018, David commented on Printing: Speed :

TomTom, yes!

+1 to the above comments that this might be a solution in search of a problem. If the problem is worrying about getting a good fit, I’d be really interested in seeing a technology that helps improve my confidence that a shoe is a perfect fit for me, even if that shoe is not (fully) customized. Tempted to post a picture of my foot in lieu of a comment.

On November 15, 2018, David commented on Waymo: The future of (not) driving :

The driverless car revolution could come much sooner or much later than we think. It’s plus or minus decades. That’s important because it means a driverless car company would need to be able to survive long enough for this technology to catch on. Advantage anyone backed by Google (or other large profitable tech company with deep pockets), disadvantage anyone backed by a VC funding round. To me that is Waymo’s biggest competitive advantage in this space.

My first thought was that an organization might be wary of seeking funds on Neighborly because it could potentially be seen as a bad signal (As in “why couldn’t this org get funds elsewhere?”).

To counteract that, your idea to “leverage community feedback from individual investors about projects they want to invest in” seems really exciting. It draws a parallel to the success Kaggle has had as a platform for data science competitions and prizes offered by both public and private entities seeking open innovation.

On November 15, 2018, David commented on Prellis Biologics: Manufacturing Life :

This is so cool – thank you for sharing this story, Emma!

It’s fascinating to think that our society has gotten to the point where there is a company trying to 3D print kidneys and technology risk (“can they build it”) is almost the least of their worries. Thanks for shedding light on the legal and regulatory issues that are some of the most complicated parts.

One question I have is to what extent people who are looking for a kidney would be willing to accept a 3D printed one. While there might be some patients who would rather wait and see if they can get a traditional kidney transplant, it’s likely others (and maybe most) would be more inclined to try this option if it means getting a kidney as soon as possible. Maybe Prellis has an opportunity to literally create a petition of potential patients that would want this as a way of sparking the regulatory and legal processes to move forward.

Agreed with Mike — this is definitely something worth working on.

Matt, this is such a thoughtful and thought-provoking post – thank you!

My thoughts are similar to Brian R’s. Seems that in all forms of communication, there is a familiar cyclical pattern of one medium becoming too noisy, so we introduce a new one to elevate signal from noise. Ironically, adoption of the new medium eventually creates too much information again, and the cycle continues.

Given that challenge, one potential way this technology might help intelligence experts is connecting the dots between pieces of information they are actively investigating, rather than adding more leads to the (already noisy) funnel.