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Do AI’s dream of cat videos?


So, Google wired together 16,000 processors into the largest neural network ever, turned it loose on the Internet, allowed it to study anything it wanted, and it chose to…watch cat videos.

I suspect the reason why is not all that interesting. Probably something like the high proportion of cat pictures made cat pictures flag up as significant. But that just sucks the fun right out of it.

‘Scuse cellphone picture — it’s so rare to see Jack and Charlotte together without fur flying. We’ve just wormed himself. Frontline used to do the trick, but it totally stopped working for us, and our vet said (a couple of years ago) that they had received tons of complaints about that. He spoke to the Frontline rep, who swore blind that nothing had changed. Does it still work where you are?

We used a prescription stuff called Advocate last night. It seems to be working well, but I just made the mistake of reading some online reviews (“it killed my kitten!”) and now I’ll be checking him out every few minutes.

Uncle B is very disappointed in me for not running with this story tonight. He’s a very basic creature.

Happy Friday, y’all. We have an embarrassment of village fêtes to go to this weekend.


Comment from Uncle Badger
Time: July 17, 2015, 9:49 pm

I cannot even begin to tell you how disappointed I am that The Weasel didn’t steal that ‘no shitting!’ graphic and turn it to some (even darker) purpose.

I find it hard to believe that Icelandics are doing this. Nor any other Scandinavians. Certainly not the Japanese. So who is?

Jack is currently asleep on my chair and seems quite well. There will be no further health bulletins tonight.

Thank you.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: July 17, 2015, 9:50 pm

Here you go. Experiment with setting off nukes of various sizes in various places, and see how big the fallout gets!

Comment from mojo
Time: July 17, 2015, 10:14 pm

Let’s play “Global Thermonuclear Conflict”, shall we?

Reminds me of an old game I had.

Comment from QuasiModo
Time: July 17, 2015, 11:43 pm

The NukeMap is cool…I just nuked Toronto! 1 Mt…lots of fallout!

It’s starting to feel like the cold war all over again.

Comment from Stark Ðickflüßiᵹ
Time: July 18, 2015, 4:05 am

see how big the fallout gets

Yeah yeah. You and Carlos Sagan, always thinking that the world ends with one nuke. I mean, given how many hundreds of times the US has been nuked, you’d think the innumerate would grasp a clue, but nope!

Comment from catnip
Time: July 18, 2015, 6:24 am

We used Frontline on the animals for years, and were beginning to doubt that it was still effective at getting rid of fleas. Last summer, when we gave the dog her first dose, she had an immediate allergic reaction. We switched to Revolution. No adverse effects noted, although the fleas have not been heard from.

Comment from Ccs
Time: July 18, 2015, 1:25 pm

We gave our cat his first dose of frontline for the summer season about a month ago. He’s been pulling out fur since the day after he was dosed. Something must have changed, we’ve been using FL for years and never hay a reaction before.

Comment from The Neon Madman
Time: July 19, 2015, 3:31 am

I’ve got the feeling that Uncle B and I would get along just fine.

Comment from Feynmangroupie
Time: July 19, 2015, 5:26 am

embarrassment of village fêtes

Shouldn’t that be a feat of fetes?
Is that like a murder of crows or a business of weasels?

Other good ones:

An obstinacy of buffalo
A memory of elephants
A troubling of goldfish
An escargatoire of snails


Comment from mojo
Time: July 19, 2015, 6:44 am

Buffalo can be as obstinate as they want.

I had a big bull chase my VW beetle once, desirous of doing a tap-dance upon it. BIG bull. Sucker was bigger than my car. But not quite as fast.

Comment from QuasiModo
Time: July 19, 2015, 11:46 am

An unkindness of ravens is a good one.

Comment from Pupster
Time: July 19, 2015, 2:35 pm

One might think the AI’s in question are hatching plans to make humanity their own feline companions.

*practices chasing red dot*

Comment from Stark Ðickflüßiᵹ
Time: July 19, 2015, 6:57 pm

A yard of apes.

Comment from Bob Mulroy
Time: July 20, 2015, 9:05 pm

Both ingredients in Advocate are exquisitely toxic to bugs and worms, but not to warm-blooded critters.
Maybe a case of the stuff fell on her kitten?

Comment from AliceH
Time: July 20, 2015, 9:25 pm

I recall reading several articles and warnings about faux frontline (from Mexico, for one) being sold in lots of legitimate retail sites. Packaging Looks identical, but it’s counterfeit with who knows what in it. My vet still posts warnings in his office – the only way to be sure of getting the legit stuff is through medical supply chains that vet (heh) the product back to proper, manufacturer’s source.

My cat hasn’t had any negative reactions, FWIW.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: July 20, 2015, 9:43 pm

Well, it’s like anything else online: it’s all five star and one star reviews, Bob. There were half a dozen people saying their adult cats had serious, life threatening reactions (in addition to that poor kitten).

Comment from Bob Mulroy
Time: July 21, 2015, 5:26 pm

True enough.

Comment from Rich Rostrom
Time: July 30, 2015, 5:55 am

Re this story.

A few years ago, the French park service installed portapotties at the top of Mont Blanc. It had become popular with climbers, and well, “Yellow snow.”

(The snow cover on mountain tops accumulates because it never melts.)

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