Computational Knowledge: Wonders of Wolfram

1.) Passage used: http://blog.stephenwolfram.com/2012/10/latest-perspectives-on-the-computation-age/

I highlighted this section of the passage: “…everything that’s happened with computers over the past 50 years, we haven’t seen anything yet.”

I think that this is totally true! It’s surprising how fast computers have evolved with such a short time they’ve been around. It’s crazy how much they change every two or three years, so I can’t wait to see their progress a decade from now.

2.) Facebook report: This scared me so much! I couldn’t believe how much information Wolfram Alpha was able to derive from my facebook. The scariest part was that it was able to have all of this really detailed information about my facebook habits in less than two minutes! This is a chart of my weekly distribution: statuses, uploaded photos and my posted links. I also have some post statistics. I couldn’t believe I had 122 comments! I haven’t even had facebook for half a year yet!

3.) My example topic: How did Wassily Kandinsky (artist) use color?

I found that Wolfram Alpha didn’t do so hot in this category. Unlike the amount of information Wolfram was able to get about my facebook, I was given only a basic knowledge of who Wassily was, or what his work even looked like. All I was given was where & when he was born and where & when he died. I wish that more important information that actually had something to do with his art, since this is the topic in which I inquired about, was available on this site.

4.) Source comparison: Google.com

I found at least 3 pretty reliable sources that were totally related to my topic!! Google had much more of a variety of information and all of the variety was filled with information about my topic, much more than just his death and birth! Unfortunately since Wolfram is such a new company they haven’t yet figured out how to put information like this in large quantities.

5.) Knoweledge issue questions:

-Where does Wolfram get their information from?

-How reliable is Wolfram Alpha? How is it better than any other reliable source?

Goals of Wolfram Alpha Company:

-To make all systematic knowledge immediately computable and accessible to everyone.

-To bring expert-level knowledge and capabilities to the broadest possible range of people—spanning all professions and education levels.

-To accept completely free-form input, and to serve as a knowledge engine that generates powerful results and presents them with maximum clarity.

6.) I don’t think that using Wolfram Alpha is cheating at all. First of all, once we graduate college we will all have access to this site. So why can’t we use it now? Especially when we are using it to solve problems that we will most likely not be solving by hand in real life. Most of the information we learn in math isn’t realistic to something we would do everyday or to even math related jobs, so why do we learn it? And if we do continue to learn it we should have the right to use Wolfram to help us solve these silly equations.

7.) I feel that Siri is a great idea, that’s not fully functional. Siri does some simple tasks hands free. However, most of the time she doesn’t understand you, goes way too slow, or is just plain sassy. When I want to know something I want to know something. I don’t want some technological device giving me some sassy answer. Siri thinks she’s funny, but she’s probably caused millions of iphone users rage and she probably is the reason for so many iphone damages. Hopefully with all the time and effort Google is putting into Siri, she will come out of her sassy teenager stage and become a much more functional adult!

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