Biases in algorithms – the case of Hello Barbie

Sometime ago, I saw a presentation by Val Steeves, Professor of Criminology at the University of Ottawa (Canada), about her research on smart toys. The talk focused on Hello Barbie, a Barbie-branded doll which is advertised as “the first fashion doll that can have a two-way conversation with girls”, and featuring “speech recognition and progressive … Continue reading Biases in algorithms – the case of Hello Barbie

What is a good meal? What is a good algorithm?

If I gave you free reign of the larder, and asked you to prepare a good meal, what would you cook? Something rich and creamy, to help me get through this long week? Or a vegetable laden pie, to help me get my 5-a-day?   It depends on your definition of good, right? Meals are not … Continue reading What is a good meal? What is a good algorithm?

The tree lost its bra

This time last year, this tree had a bra. Actually, 2 or 3. I can’t remember exactly how many. Not far from this tree, there is a bridge with lots of locks in its railings, tied by couples as a symbol of their love. It’s a tradition. Maybe the bra-thing is a tradition, too, I … Continue reading The tree lost its bra