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TagThe Economist

History of science, concept. Isaac Newton with Apple in hand

Don’t Expect AI to Revolutionize Science 

Data science is a downstream phenomenon. Thinking isn't. 

The September 2023 cover of The Economist features a robot sitting under an apple tree, raising a finger to some Eureka! moment, after an apple falls from the tree and hits it on the head. Anyone even remotely familiar with the history of science knows the image belongs to Isaac Newton, who gave an account of an apple falling to the ground while sitting in his garden at Woolsthorpe Manor in 1666. As he later recounted, he asked himself why the apple should fall perpendicularly to the ground, which gave rise to the idea that the very same force pulling the apple to earth kept the moon falling to the earth, and the earth to the sun. The apple, in other words, Read More ›

Students sitting a test in an exam hall in college

When Universities No Longer Want You To Know Controversial Ideas

Perhaps The Economist might wish to consider whether reality matters

Yesterday, we looked at why the publishing industry has gone to war against books. In that case, it’s an economic decision, really. The industry no longer benefits from championing books that the establishment would rather you did not read — a major change from centuries of publishing history. Why it happened? Well, mainly, there are lots of other ways to get the news. And there are ways to make money from publishing without risking controversial books. The tendency has, of course, infected universities as well. The Economist has the story: What aren’t you allowed to know more about gender ideology?: Hours before Jo Phoenix, a professor of criminology at Britain’s Open University, was due to give a talk at Essex Read More ›


Did the Economist Really “Interview” an AI?

Perhaps they have a private definition of what an interview "is"…

Faced with a claim that an AI language tool had given an interview, I took the advice I gave readers yesterday, and followed the links. What a revelation. The Economist story was more dishonest than the examples that Siegel discussed in Scientific American.

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