Links for 2018-10-4

Ixy: A messaging app for happier conversations

An AI-based emotional intelligence coach, embedded into a proprietary messaging service.

Your Ixy watches out for things like:

  • Your conversation’s speed and mood
  • If you get to talk the same amount as your chatmate
  • if there’s something your chatmate is misunderstanding

Addressing AI’s adoption gap problem in healthcare [Paddy Padmanabhan | Healthcare Analytics News]

Identifies three key challenges in seeing greater AI adoption in healthcare:

  • Finding an organization model for the future
  • Achieving scale economics.
  • Addressing stranded costs

Six signs of scientism [Abstract] [PDF]

When and why is deference to the sciences inappropriate or exaggerated?

1. Using the words “science,” “scientific,” “scientifically,” “scientist,” etc., honorifically, as generic terms of epistemic praise.

2. Adopting the manners, the trappings, the technical terminology, etc., of the sciences, irrespective of their real usefulness.

3. A preoccupation with demarcation, i.e., with drawing a sharp line between genuine science, the real thing, and “pseudo-scientific” imposters.

4. A corresponding preoccupation with identifying the “scientific method,” presumed to explain how the sciences have been so successful.

5. Looking to the sciences for answers to questions beyond their scope.

6. Denying or denigrating the legitimacy or the worth of other kinds of inquiry besides the scientific, or the value of human activities other than inquiry, such as poetry or art.

“Six signs of scientism”: Where I disagree with Haack [Andrew Gelman | Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science]

I spend a lot of time thinking about something different: a passive scientism which is not concerned about turf (thus, not showing signs 1 and 3 above); not concerned about the scientific method, indeed often displaying little interest in the foundations of scientific logic and reasoning (thus, not showing sign 4 above); and not showing any imperialistic inclinations to bring the humanities into the scientific orbit (thus, not showing signs 5 or 6 above). Passive scientism does involve adopting the trappings and terminology of science in a thoughtless way, so there is a bit of sign 2 above, but that’s it.

In this particular manifestation of scientism—claims that bounce around between scientific journals, textbooks, and general media outlets such as NPR and Ted talks—there is no preoccupation with identifying the scientific method or preoccupation with demarcation, but rather the near-opposite, an all-too-calm acceptance of wacky claims that happen to be in the proximity to various tokens of science.