Mini-Heap


The latest links…

  1. “A.I. [learns] through statistical distribution the best word to use, the distribution of the reasonable words that could come next. I think moral decision-making can be done like that as well” — an interview with computer scientist (and MacArthur “genius” grant winner) Yejin Choi (Washington) on morality and artificial intelligence.
  2. “Some researchers say it does not make sense to frame something that is a normal biological process as disease. Further complicating things… is that there is no agreed-upon point at which a person becomes old” — Is old age a disease? Is a “yes” answer “ageist”? Or is the view that ageing is acceptable ageist? Questions about aging at Technology Review
  3. What happened in math, physics, computer science, and biology in 2022? — Quanta Magazine has published its annual round-ups for each of those fields
  4. “After a five-week strike at the University of California, employed graduate students have ratified a pathbreaking new contract that offers most of them 50 or 60 percent wage hikes within the next two-and-a-half years” — Nelson Lichtenstein (UCSB) on what can be learned from this “stunning accomplishment”
  5. “Despite what many people might think today, the young Romantics didn’t turn against the sciences or reason, but lamented what Coleridge described as the absence of ‘connective powers of the understanding’” — Andrea Wulf on how “what happened in Jena in the last decade of the 18th century has shaped us”
  6. Contest: “Give us a transcription of how a dialogue between Socrates and one or more contemporary figures would play out. The topic or the question can be whatever you want” — and yes there are cash prizes for the winners, you sophists
  7. “Our aim should be to allow each animal to live an active life characteristic of its species, up to some reasonable threshold level” — “All animals count, and all deserve to live as the animals they are,” says Martha Nussbaum (Chicago), interviewed by Evan Selinger (RIT)

Discussion welcome.

Mini-Heap posts usually appear when 7 or so new items accumulate in the Heap of Links, a collection of items from around the web that may be of interest to philosophers. The Heap of Links consists partly of suggestions from readers; if you find something online that you think would be of interest to the philosophical community, please send it in for consideration for the Heap. Thanks!

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