MACHINE READABLE: THE POWER AND LIMITS OF ALGORITHMS THAT ARE SHAPING SOCIETY



The Brown Club of Silicon Valley is proud to host Professor Suresh Venkatasubraman.

Please register at Eventbrite - Zoom link for the event is there.


https://www.eventbrite.com/e/virtual-back-to-class-the-power-and-limits-of-algorithms-tickets-226575081167


MACHINE READABLE: THE POWER AND LIMITS OF ALGORITHMS THAT ARE SHAPING SOCIETY Algorithms have infiltrated our society, imposing their own frame of reference on how we conduct ourselves, how we interact with others, and how we are judged. They’ve turbocharged inequality and biases. They’ve accelerated the balkanization of the landscape of ideas, making it easier and easier to live within suffocatingly homogeneous ideological and cultural bubbles. Our obsession with technology has brought out the worst in us while trying to bring out the best. But it’s done a whole lot more. The story of the algorithmic society is not about how the widespread deployment of technology creates distortions in the world. It is about a particular mindset—an algorithmic lens—that has quietly reframed how we think about society itself. In this talk, Professor Venkatasubramanian will describe the elements of this lens—precision, scale, homogeneity, and consistency. He’ll illustrate how many of the problems we encounter with technology come from the distorting effect of this lens. And he’ll also argue (perhaps surprisingly) that the lens still has much to offer, as long as we can understand where it is most effective and where it is not.


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Suresh Venkatasubramanian is a Professor (Research) of Computer Science and Data Science at Brown University. Suresh's background is in algorithms and computational geometry, as well as data mining and machine learning.

His current research interests lie in algorithmic fairness, and more generally the impact of automated decision-making systems in society.

Prior to Brown University, Suresh was at the University of Utah. His research on algorithmic fairness has received press coverage across North America and Europe, including NPR’s Science Friday, NBC, and CNN, as well as in other media outlets. He is a past member of the Computing Community Consortium Council of the CRA, spent 4 years (2017-2021) as a member of the board of the ACLU in Utah, and is a past member of New York City’s Failure to Appear Tool (FTA) Research Advisory Council, the Research Advisory Council for the First Judicial District of Pennsylvania and the Utah State Auditor's Commission on protecting privacy and preventing discrimination.

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