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C2FO/nools – A rete-based rules engine for Node

C2FO/nools – A rete-based rules engine for Node

General
I was reminiscing over the rules-based interaction system I worked with on the Zeno robot back in the day.  Particularly, I was thinking about how how the deterministic, one-shot state transition sometimes led to some undesirable and aberrant behavior.  If you weren't careful, the Personality could slam back and forth between different "mental" states and even seem somewhat ADD.  Even though that behavior was mitigated by writing soft transition language into the resulting state's verbal actions, the Personality sometimes seemed to have no sense of attention or immediate auto-biography. So, today I was thinking about a state-transition system where the transition actions were less one-shot.  My thinking goes like this: Mental states prime us towards the following mental behavior: accentuate thinking about some things suppress thinking about other things thinking about things in a certain way…
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I hate Verdana too

General
Typography can be fun and zany, but there's always a purpose behind it.  Often, you select fonts for readability.  On the web, the challenge is even bigger because the delivery is often so variable with differently sized screens ranging from huge monitors to small mobile devices. So, for most applications, you need a font that helps the eyes grasp what they are seeing.  Verdana is just not one of those.  In fact, it leans towards making reading difficult.  This article, by Pamela Wilson, explains some of the problems and has a good set of examples. Go see the article here : Why I Hate Verdana - Big Brand System -.
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The Ultimate Software Development Office Layout

The Ultimate Software Development Office Layout

General
This is a pretty decent article on office layouts for software development. I would make a few adjustments. These are based on my own observations and experience. Your mileage may vary. 1) War rooms are good for rapid product development -> driving to version 1.0 quickly. They are less productive for long-term software development, or for multiple project development. 7) Emphasize #7. 8) In fact, people should move to the space most conducive to the type of work they are doing at that time. 11) With Agile development, you should be able to break teams into no more than 4 people each.  I can't imagine a room with 12 people working in it. Add #23) A project status board should be placed conspicuously.  It's best if this is electronic and automatically updated.…
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Depth of Tech Screen

Depth of Tech Screen

Work
I can't tell if I'm expecting too much from candidate developers or not. I do tech screens for various projects and we've had quite a few candidates come through lately.  I realize I need to expand tactics to get a better feel for expertise in the general programming area. Working on this custom product has caused me to learn some technologies in-depth so I could create some of the custom UI elements that we've needed.  I do realize that not all developers have such challenging work.  However, when we've got a requirement for a developer with two years experience in technology X, I try to compare what I've learned about that technology in the same amount of time.  I ask about scenarios that I've faced. It's the most available experience I can discuss with…
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Notes from Ammar/Mocanu – Automatically Mapped Transfer Between Reinforcement Learning Tasks via Three-Way Restricted Boltzmann Machines

Notes from Ammar/Mocanu – Automatically Mapped Transfer Between Reinforcement Learning Tasks via Three-Way Restricted Boltzmann Machines

Annotations
Citation H. Ammar and D. Mocanu, “Automatically Mapped Transfer Between Reinforcement Learning Tasks via Three-Way Restricted Boltzmann Machines,” Mach. Learn. …, 2013. Abstract Existing reinforcement learning approaches are often hampered by learning tabula rasa.  Transfer for reinforcement learning tackles this problem by enabling the reuse of previously learned results, but may require an inter-task mapping to encode how the previously learned task and the new task are related.  This paper presents an autonomous framework for learning inter-task mappings based on an adaptation of restricted Boltzmann machines.  Both a full model and a computationally efficient factored model are introduced and shown to be effective in multiple transfer learning scenarios. Quotes & Notes Re:Random or not Unfortunately, learning in this model cannot be done with normal CD. The main reason is that if…
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Random or Not?

Random or Not?

Updates
One of the basic questions that needs to be answered about using the autoencoder architecture to learn a mapping function between two domains is a question of randomness and of what model the autoencoder is learning. Do I have to pair correlated SARS samples together for input or can I, as with a probabilistic model  (See Ammar for TrRBM.), introduce pairs randomly?  
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How Artificial Intelligence And Robots Will Impact Jobs And How We Think About Work – The Diane Rehm Show

General
Let me coin a new term. We're talking here about the gig economy. It used to be called moonlighting, meaning that you had a daytime job. This is moonlighting without a daytime job. Maybe we should call it daylighting because in daylighting, you just piece together a life out of a series of different activities that you enjoy or you're involved in that -- each of which gives you either some personal pleasure or some kind of economic result. I think that very well could be the future, and Dean's got a very good point. Basic health care is an important pillar in being able to build a society around that concept. via How Artificial Intelligence And Robots Will Impact Jobs And How We Think About Work - The Diane…
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Cortical Arousal and Creativity

notes
This somewhat aligns with the previous note.   A group of people were given three tests: the Alternate Uses Test, the Remote Associates Test, and an intelligence test.  These tests test Creativity, a blend of Creativity and Intelligence, and Intelligence, respectively.  EEG's revealed that among two groups (highly creative and medium-to-low), the former showed more of a differential among the three tests than did the less creative subjects.  That is, those scoring high on the creativity tests had a lower state of arousal during those tests and higher activation on the intelligence test.  Those scoring lower on the creativity tests showed higher states of arousal. This suggests that the mechanisms of creativity are associated with neurophysiological states that occur during low cortical arousal.  I'd be interested to know if there…
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Elements of Creativity

notes
I've created a new category for reading notes.  I need to be able to quickly put down notes, save them, and be able to recall them later.  They may make no sense whatsoever. "The stages are preparation, incubation, illumination or inspiration, and verification or elaboration." - Martindale, C. (1999) Biological Bases of Cretivity.  Cambridge, UK.  Cambridge University Press. My thoughts are: Preparation amounts to building the knowledge or store of concepts.  Incubation is the period where the unconscious cognition processes the the knowledge, and illumination is the stage where the newly formed concept becomes active enough to cross the threshold into conscious thought. There is much going on "under-the-hood" so to speak, in terms of cognition - so much outside of the perview of our mind's eye.  If you think…
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Let’s not be hasty

General
In reading about creativity, I find it interesting that the mechanism behind it is often, still, shrouded in mystery. There are a number of studies on self-reports of creative inspiration. From these, neither scientists nor artists seem to report that their inspirations are from purely intellectual deduction. Rather, these creative ideas seem to spring forth automatically and effortlessly. We also know that conscious thought is but a small part of the whole of cognitive process. There is much going on in the brain that lies beyond the viewport of the mind's eye.  But, even though we can't see it, that doesn't mean that creativity isn't a process.  Like many things, it may take a third-person view of that process to understand it.  So, I think we must be careful to…
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