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The formula : how algorithms solve all our problems --and create more

Author: Luke Dormehl
Publisher: New York, New York : Penguin Group (USA) LLC, [2014] ©2014
Edition/Format:   Print book : English : First American edition : November 2014View all editions and formats
Summary:
"Algorithms exert an extraordinary level of influence on our everyday lives--from dating websites and financial trading floors, through to online retailing and internet searches--Google's search algorithm is now a more closely guarded commercial secret than the recipe for Coca-Cola. Algorithms follow a series of instructions to solve a problem and will include a strategy to produce the best outcome possible from the  Read more...
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Genre/Form: History
Popular works
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Luke Dormehl
ISBN: 9780399170539 0399170537
OCLC Number: 889886587
Notes: "A Perigee book."
"Previously published in the UK in 2014 by Virgin Books, an imprint of Ebury Publishing."--Title page verso.
Description: 278 pages : illustrations ; 22 cm
Contents: An explanation of the title, and other cyberbole --
The quantified selves --
The match & the spark --
Do algorithms dream of electric laws? --
The machine that made art --
Conclusion : predicting the future.
Responsibility: Luke Dormehl.
More information:

Abstract:

"Algorithms exert an extraordinary level of influence on our everyday lives--from dating websites and financial trading floors, through to online retailing and internet searches--Google's search algorithm is now a more closely guarded commercial secret than the recipe for Coca-Cola. Algorithms follow a series of instructions to solve a problem and will include a strategy to produce the best outcome possible from the options and permutations available. Used by scientists for many years and applied in a very specialized way they are now increasingly employed to process the vast amounts of data being generated, in investment banks, in the movie industry where they are used to predict success or failure at the box office and by social scientists and policy makers. What if everything in life could be reduced to a simple formula? What if numbers were able to tell us which partners we were best matched with--not just in terms of attractiveness, but for a long-term committed marriage? Or if they could say which films would be the biggest hits at the box office, and what changes could be made to those films to make them even more successful? Or even who is likely to commit certain crimes, and when? This may sound like the world of science fiction, but in fact it is just the tip of the iceberg in a world that is increasingly ruled by complex algorithms and neural networks. In The Formula, Luke Dormehl takes readers inside the world of numbers, asking how we came to believe in the all-conquering power of algorithms; introducing the mathematicians, artificial intelligence experts and Silicon Valley entrepreneurs who are shaping this brave new world, and ultimately asking how we survive in an era where numbers can sometimes seem to create as many problems as they solve."--Publisher's description.

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