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RE: What's your vote for the Grand Challenge?

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  • Mike Beedle
    ... Dan: I didn t like the fact that they don t reference previous art, like other on-going similar projects dating back to 30 years. But I liked the interest
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 27 12:32 PM
      > I vote that the whole thing is a colossal crock.


      I didn't like the fact that they don't reference previous
      art, like other on-going similar projects dating back
      to 30 years. But I liked the interest in making
      this a "Grand Challenge", like the Genome project.

      > I found this statement both enlightening and amusing:
      > "'In 20 years time perhaps all computer systems
      > will be built on a theory that is understood.
      > We are trying to establish these theories.' "

      The quote as I understood it was only related to
      one of the projects:

      2. Science for Global Ubiquitous Computing

      > But "theory" implies a mathematical solution.

      I disagree. Theories are explanations sometimes
      backed up with empirical data. They can be mathematical
      or not.

      > Is there a single new "theory" that mathematics has
      > added in the past 40 years for the benefit of
      > understanding computing?

      I would say yes, for example Grenander's General Pattern Theory.

      Its applicability extends _all_ domains from visual
      pattern recognition, language, medical, software ...
      you name it.

      But there are many others, of course.

      > It seems to me that if progress toward understanding
      > computer systems will be made in the next twenty years
      > that progress will begin when a community of users
      > gets their fossilized mathematical reasoning about
      > "theories" out of the way.

      Well, I agree with this. But I think including
      biomimetic or even biological theories (that are
      not necessarily mathematical), is a good start.

      > The computer is a social science problem. Social
      > science must deal with decision control.

      I don't know if the "computer" is a social science
      problem, but I would agree that Software Development
      is mostly a social problem.

      > What mathematical theorem will withstand the need
      > for a proof that tests for how you or I will decide
      > to behave tomorrow? Or, for that matter, to test
      > for what laws you or I might decide to enforce on
      > other people's behavior?

      Localized Nash Equilibriums constrained by common laws?

      You can probably call this an imposed "moral imperative" :-)

      - Mike
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