10 MAR 2019 by ideonexus

 Computers are All Tactics and No Strategy

Chess computers don't have psychological faults, but they do have very distinct strengths and weaknesses, far more distinct than any equivalently strong human player would have. Today, they are so strong that most of their vulnerabilities have been steamrolled into irrelevancy by the sheer speed and depth of brute force search. They cannot play strategically, but they are too accurate tactically for a human to exploit those subtle weaknesses decisively. A tennis player with a 250-m.p.h. serve...
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29 MAY 2014 by ideonexus

 When Science Became a Profession

The possibilities of modem technology were first in practice realised in England by the energy of a prosperous middle class. Accordingly, the industrial revolution started there. But the Germans explicitly realised the methods by which the deeper veins in the mine of science could be reached. In their technological schools and universities progress did not have to wait for the occasional genius or the occasional lucky thought. Their feats of scholarship during the nineteenth century were the ...
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Rising from the prosperous classes and the reliance on occasional genius to a methodology for producing consistent results.

24 MAY 2013 by ideonexus

 No Such Thing as Professional Photographers

...there’s no such thing as Flickr Pro, because today, with cameras as pervasive as they are, there is no such thing really as professional photographers, when there’s everything is professional photographers. Certainly there is varying levels of skills, but we didn’t want to have a Flickr Pro anymore, we wanted everyone to have professional quality photos, space, and sharing.
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The Yahoo CEO took a lot of heat for this comment, but there is a great deal of truth to it. With digital photography, photographs are so pervasive that professionals are now competing with a horde of amateurs.

13 APR 2013 by ideonexus

 The Difference Between Average and Great Chessmasters

Great players like Kasparov do not delude themselves into thinking they can calculate all these possibilities. This is what separates elite players from amateurs. In his famous study of chess players, the Dutch psychologist Adriaan de Groot found that amateur players, when presented with a chess problem, often frustrated themselves by looking for the perfect move, rendering themselves incapable of making any move at all. Chess masters, by contrast, are looking for a good move—and certainly...
Folksonomies: thinking chess
Folksonomies: thinking chess
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The great do not overthink, but rely on intuition to guide them. They do not look for a perfect move, but an advantageous move.

18 APR 2011 by ideonexus

 The Growth of Taxonomy in the Scientific Revolution

Taxonomy was the biology of the scientific revolution. The opening up of the New World and the Far East provided European scientists with thousands of new species to examine and classify. Establishing botanical gardens, menageries and 'cabinets' of minerals, preserved animal specimens and dried plants were favourite hobbies amongst wealthy collectors. And since the natural sciences were not yet fully recognised by university faculties, these studies remained in the hands of amateurs. Of 48 na...
Folksonomies: science history
Folksonomies: science history
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Many women became botonists and entomologist during this time.