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Weapons of Math Destruction: How Big Data Increases Inequality and Threatens Democracy
Brand: Crown Publishing Group NY
Feature: Crown Publishing Group NY
Item Dimensions: Array
Number Of Items: 1
Number Of Pages: 272
Publication Date: 2016-09-06
Release Date: 2016-09-06
• Crown Publishing Group NY
Longlisted for the National Book Award | New York Times Bestseller
A former Wall Street quant sounds an alarm on the mathematical models that pervade modern life and threaten to rip apart our social fabric.
We live in the age of the algorithm. Increasingly, the decisions that affect our lives—where we go to school, whether we get a car loan, how much we pay for health insurance—are being made not by humans, but by mathematical models. In theory, this should lead to greater fairness: Everyone is judged according to the same rules, and bias is eliminated.
But as Cathy O’Neil reveals in this urgent and necessary book, the opposite is true. The models being used today are opaque, unregulated, and uncontestable, even when they’re wrong. Most troubling, they reinforce discrimination: If a poor student can’t get a loan because a lending model deems him too risky (by virtue of his zip code), he’s then cut off from the kind of education that could pull him out of poverty, and a vicious spiral ensues. Models are propping up the lucky and punishing the downtrodden, creating a “toxic cocktail for democracy.” Welcome to the dark side of Big Data.
Tracing the arc of a person’s life, O’Neil exposes the black box models that shape our future, both as individuals and as a society. These “weapons of math destruction” score teachers and students, sort résumés, grant (or deny) loans, evaluate workers, target voters, set parole, and monitor our health.
O’Neil calls on modelers to take more responsibility for their algorithms and on policy makers to regulate their use. But in the end, it’s up to us to become more savvy about the models that govern our lives. This important book empowers us to ask the tough questions, uncover the truth, and demand change.
• Data and Goliath: The Hidden Battles to Collect Your Data and Control Your World
• The Black Box Society: The Secret Algorithms That Control Money and Information
• Big Data: A Revolution That Will Transform How We Live, Work, and Think
• Algorithms to Live By: The Computer Science of Human Decisions
• Ethics of Big Data: Balancing Risk and Innovation
• Play Anything: The Pleasure of Limits, the Uses of Boredom, and the Secret of Games
• Everybody Lies: Big Data, New Data, and What the Internet Can Tell Us About Who We Really Are
• The Seven Pillars of Statistical Wisdom
• How Not to Be Wrong: The Power of Mathematical Thinking
• GIS Research Methods: Incorporating Spatial Perspectives