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Weapons of Math Destruction: How Big Data Increases Inequality and Threatens Democracy

Weapons of Math Destruction: How Big Data Increases Inequality and Threatens Democracy

New York Times Bestseller 'Fascinating and deeply disturbing' - Yuval Noah Harari, Guardian Books of the Year 'A manual for the 21st-century citizen...accessible, refreshingly critical, relevant and urgent' - Federica Cocco, Financial Times A former Wall Street quant sounds an al... read full description below.

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ISBN 9780141985411
Barcode 9780141985411
Published 19 June 2017 by Penguin
Format Paperback
Alternate Format(s) View All (4 other possible title(s) available)
Author(s) By O'Neil, Cathy
Availability In stock at publisher; ships 6-12 working days

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Full details for this title

ISBN-13 9780141985411
ISBN-10 0141985410
Stock Available
Status In stock at publisher; ships 6-12 working days
Publisher Penguin
Imprint Penguin Books Ltd
Publication Date 19 June 2017
Publication Country United Kingdom United Kingdom
Format Paperback
Author(s) By O'Neil, Cathy
Category Political Ideologies
Political Structures: Democracy
Economic Statistics
Mathematics
Impact Of Science & Technology On Society
Popular Science
Data Structures
Computer Programming: Algorithms & Procedures
Machine Learning
Number of Pages 272
Dimensions Width: 129mm
Height: 198mm
Spine: 16mm
Weight 202g
Interest Age 16+ years
Reading Age 16+ years
NBS Text Science: General & Reference
ONIX Text College/higher education;General/trade;Professional and scholarly
Dewey Code 303.483;303.483
Catalogue Code 880003

Description of this Book

New York Times Bestseller 'Fascinating and deeply disturbing' - Yuval Noah Harari, Guardian Books of the Year 'A manual for the 21st-century citizen...accessible, refreshingly critical, relevant and urgent' - Federica Cocco, Financial Times 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 loan, how much we pay for 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. And yet, as Cathy O'Neil reveals in this urgent and necessary book, the opposite is true. The models being used today are opaque, unregulated, and incontestable, even when they're wrong. Most troubling, they reinforce discrimination. 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 CVs, grant or deny loans, evaluate workers, target voters, and monitor our health. O'Neil calls on modellers 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.

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Awards, Reviews & Star Ratings

NZ Review This is a manual for the 21st-century citizen, and it succeeds where other big data accounts have failed - it is accessible, refreshingly critical and feels relevant and urgent -- Federica Cocco Financial Times Well-written, entertaining and very valuable -- Danny Dorling Times Higher Education O'Neil has become a whistle-blower for the world of Big Data... Her work makes particularly disturbing points about how being on the wrong side of an algorithmic decision can snowball in incredibly destructive ways Time Cathy O'Neil has seen Big Data from the inside, and the picture isn't pretty. Weapons of Math Destruction opens the curtain on algorithms that exploit people and distort the truth while posing as neutral mathematical tools. This book is wise, fierce, and desperately necessary -- Jordan Ellenberg, author of How Not To Be Wrong Weapons of Math Destruction is a fantastic, plainspoken call to arms. Cathy O'Neil's book is important precisely because she believes in data science. It's a vital crash course in why we must interrogate the systems around us and demand better -- Cory Doctorow, author of Little Brother and co-editor of Boing Boing
UK Review Bertrams Star Rating: 4 stars (out of 5)

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Author's Bio

Cathy O'Neil is a data scientist and author of the blog mathbabe.org. She earned a Ph.D. in mathematics from Harvard and taught at Barnard College before moving to the private sector, where she worked for the hedge fund D. E. Shaw. She then worked as a data scientist at various start-ups, building models that predict people's purchases and clicks. O'Neil started the Lede Program in Data Journalism at Columbia and is the author of Doing Data Science. She appears weekly on the Slate Money podcast.

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