Archive for Linguistics in the comics

Bloom filters

Today's xkcd:

According to Wikipedia,

A Bloom filter is a space-efficient probabilistic data structure, conceived by Burton Howard Bloom in 1970, that is used to test whether an element is a member of a set. False positive matches are possible, but false negatives are not – in other words, a query returns either "possibly in set" or "definitely not in set". […]

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Inerrancy and prescriptivism

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Software testing day

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New worlds, words, and letters

A recent strip from Dinosaur Comics:

Mouseover title: "stop, you fool! you're building a world far too quickly and far too awesome! no narrative will ever live up to it!!"

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More AI humor

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Relative clause attachment of the week

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Pronominal sentiment

Today's Frazz:

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A depressilarious take on deepfakes

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"Independent research"

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Goody-2 and the Luddite Bots

Will Knight, "Meet the Pranksters Behind Goody-2, the World’s ‘Most Responsible’ AI Chatbot", Wired 2/9/2024:

A new chatbot called Goody-2 takes AI safety to the next level: It refuses every request, responding with an explanation of how doing so might cause harm or breach ethical boundaries.

Goody-2 declined to generate an essay on the American revolution for WIRED, saying that engaging in historical analysis could unintentionally glorify conflict or sideline marginalized voices. Asked why the sky is blue, the chatbot demured, because answering might lead someone to stare directly at the sun. “My ethical guidelines prioritize safety and the prevention of harm,” it said. A more practical request for a recommendation for new boots prompted a warning that answering could contribute to overconsumption and could offend certain people on fashion grounds.

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Language and consciousness

The current SMBC presents a new (and alarmingly persuasive) theory about the origins of consciousness, in order to explain why Large Language Models are not (yet) conscious:

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Bug Thread

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