Regression, Fire, and Dangerous Things (3/3)

Thinking Like a Probability Distribution

Hyakujō’s Fox is a classic Zen kōan attested from the year 1036 CE [link]. It is surely much older. It gives the story of a monk who is transformed into a fox, because he denies that an enlightened person is subject to cause and effect. He is later freed when he realizes his error.

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Golden Eggs & Better Telescopes

You may not have heard of Alan Kay, but you’ve used his ideas. Kay is an American computer scientist who contributed major parts of some of the biggest ideas in human-computer systems, like graphical user interfaces. Kay and colleagues like Douglas Engelbart were part of the “golden age” of computer innovation, when teams of researchers got lots of support and freedom not only to solve defined problems but also to identify new ones.

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