A Crack at Algorithms: Bridging the Gap Between Humans and Computers

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Permutated connections and influence for the Viterbi algorithm. Diagram automatically shaped by omnigraffle.
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In a world where our lives are run on computers, algorithms have become the mathematical calculations at the center of how we find what movies to go see, what flights to take and what stocks to buy.

These algorithms live in the background - we don’t see them or ever have to understand them.

A group at the MIT Media Lab called “Playful Systems” is trying to change that. They embrace algorithms' complexity and bring them to the foreground through games, stories, visualizations and narratives.

Kevin Slavin, assistant professor at MIT and founder of the Playful Systems group at the MIT Media Lab, joins The Takeaway.