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Oddhead Blog wrote a new blog post titled Algorithmic economics postdoc position at Microsoft Research, NYC
We are beginning to search for a postdoc in Algorithmic Economics at Microsoft Research, New York City with a start date in Summer/Fall 2016. Strong graduating students should apply by December 8, 2015. Faculty: please encourage your best students to apply. Please feel free to forward and distribute the announcement as you see fit. Research in the Algorithmic Economics group at MSR-NYC spans a wide variety of topics at the interface of economics and computation. Application areas include auctions, crowdsourcing, gaming, information aggregation, machine learning in markets, market interfaces,...
1427 days ago
Oddhead Blog wrote a new blog post titled Keep Kirk in Lurk
Keep Kirk in lurk. Control the jerk. That piece of work. The bull Berserk. He’s loud and crass. A frequent ass. Can’t not make pass, At pretty lass. The silly dope. He preaches Pope. And clings to hope. The human trope. Not Mr. Spock, He’s run a-mok, He’s awe and shock, He doesn’t grok. Single minded. Needs reminded, Not to find id Ego blinded. Few effective. Spews invective. Treats prime directive As elective. Law evaded. Ethics faded. Simply stated: Overrated! Ignore his slick, Adoring shtick. He’s Captain Prick, Not James but Dick. Just keep him penned, He’s rare the friend. But hand...
1427 days ago
Oddhead Blog wrote a new blog post titled Unlock your Spock
Unlock your Spock, The thinking jock. In reason, stock. Your head full chock. Emotion, block. Religion, knock. Illogic, mock. To scissors, rock. Don’t jump rejoice, Without his voice, To guide your choice, Of rolls or Royce. Don’t improvise. When chance arise, Try on for size, This Enterprise. This guy insider. Calm decider. Anger hider. Truth abider. The one that bends. Who letter sends. Ends pretends, And makes amends. The man who plans. Buys minivans. Stores up his cans. Controls his glands. No chitter chat, Or swagger frat. A diplomat. A clever cat. His omissions: Intuitions,...
1666 days ago
Oddhead Blog wrote a new blog post titled Microsoft Researchers co-authored 21% of papers at the ACM Conference on Economics and Computation
Twenty-six researchers from Microsoft Research labs in Boston, China, India, Israel, New York City, Redmond, Silicon Valley, and the United Kingdom co-authored a remarkable seventeen of the eighty papers published in the 2014 ACM Conference on Economics and Computation (EC’14). Moshe Babaioff served as General Chair for the conference and many other Microsoft Researchers served roles including (senior) PC members, workshop organizers, and tutorial speakers. For research at the intersection of economics and computation, IMHO there’s no stronger “department” in the...
1903 days ago
Oddhead Blog wrote a new blog post titled Bernie Pennock’s personal credo
My dad died this morning, smiling up until the end. He was an amazing man and an incredible dad — a modern, sensitive, involved dad who was way ahead of his time — a model for me. I wrote more about my Dad in 2010. At the end of his (beautiful) memoir, my dad wrote his “personal credo”. It not only is eloquent and profound (and references calculus), it really does reflect the way he lived his life every single day. Here it is: Be honest (always be truthful) Be kind (care about others) Be fair (judge others with care) Focus and act on what is important only Pay...
1978 days ago
Oddhead Blog wrote a new blog post titled Last call: Postdoc positions at Microsoft Research NYC
Microsoft Research New York City seeks outstanding applicants for 2-year postdoctoral researcher positions. We welcome applicants with a strong academic record in one of the following areas: Computational social science Online experimental social science Algorithmic economics and market design Machine learning We will also consider applicants in other focus areas of the lab, including information retrieval, and behavioral & empirical economics. Additional information about these areas is included below. Please submit all application materials by January 11, 2013 for full consideration....
2444 days ago
Oddhead Blog wrote a new blog post titled A toast to the number 303: A redemptive election night for science, and The Signal
The night of February 15, 2012, was an uncomfortable one for me. Not a natural talker, I was out of my element at a press dinner organized by Yahoo! with journalists from the New York Times, Fast Company, MIT Tech Review, Forbes, SF Chronicle, WIRED, Reuters, and several more [1]. Even worse, the reporters kept leading with, “wow, this must a big night for you, huh? You just called the election.” We were there to promote The Signal, a partnership between Yahoo! Research and Yahoo! News to put a quantitative lens on the election and beyond. The Signal was our data-driven antidote...
2506 days ago
Oddhead Blog wrote a new blog post titled Raise your WiseQ to the 57th power
One of the few aspects of my job I enjoy more than designing a new market is actually building it. Turning some wild concept that sprung from the minds of a bunch of scientists into a working artifact is a huge rush, and I can only smile as people from around the world commence tinkering with the thing, often in ways I never expected. The “build it” phase of a research project, besides being a ton of fun, inevitably sheds important light back on the original design in a virtuous cycle. In that vein, I am thrilled to announce the beta launch of PredictWiseQ, a fully operational example of our...
2541 days ago
Oddhead Blog wrote a new blog post titled Oddhead Blog hacked… for the third time
My blog has been hacked yet again. For those keeping track, that’s infection number three. This latest exploit is very similar to the previous one. To humans arriving via browser (e.g., me), the site appears perfectly normal and healthy. Even upon clicking ‘view source’, nothing untoward is revealed. The <title> of my blog is, as always, Oddhead Blog. However, when Google’s or Bing’s crawlers arrive to index my corner of the web, they see a different <title> altogether — Buy Cheap Cialis Online  — and immediately roll their eyes. (Actually...
2694 days ago
Oddhead Blog wrote a new blog post titled Microsoft Research New York City, First Days
Now that I’ve said my goodbyes, I’m thrilled to announce that I’ve joined Microsoft Research, an organization with going-on twenty-one years of commitment to basic and applied research, employing 850 Ph.D. scientists around the globe including Turing Award winners, Fields Medalists, and many long-time colleagues that I hugely respect. If that were all, I would be over-the-top happy right now. But that’s not all. Together with fourteen other founding members (seven of whom I can name: Duncan Watts, John Langford, David Rothschild, Sharad Goel, Dan Goldstein, Jake...
2695 days ago
Oddhead Blog wrote a new blog post titled Turning in my Yahoo! badge
On Thursday April 26, 2012, I resigned from Yahoo! after nearly 10 without actively changing jobs. Here is the full text of the goodbye letter(s) I sent. It’s the kind of long-winded last salvo that few people actually read, and now I’m foisting it upon you, dear reader, but I can’t help myself. Writing it brought back many wonderful memories and a tinge of sadness at the end of a truly amazing work environment for me, but I found the exercise rewarding. I really appreciate the many kind words and well wishes: some were poignant and immensely gratifying. The feeling is...
2695 days ago
Oddhead Blog wrote a new blog post titled Congratulations Pete Wurman and Kiva Systems, a bellwether of the automated economy
Congratulations to my academic sibling, friend, and Detroit Red Wings fan Pete Wurman, whose company Kiva Systems just became Amazon’s second largest acquisition ever. In short, Kiva Systems designs, builds, and operates intelligent autonomous robots to pick and stow products in giant distribution centers for companies like Toys R Us, Walgreens, and Zappos. (The latter is an Amazon subsidiary.) The best way to understand Kiva Systems is to watch their robots in action: an amazing sight to see. Here is a clip from IEEE Spectrum: In 2003, I remember sitting in the back seat of a car with...
2739 days ago
Oddhead Blog wrote a new blog post titled Prediction Market PowWow at Yahoo! Research New York, August 2011
I am incredibly lucky. Last August, I spent three days straight thinking almost exclusively about one topic: prediction markets, mostly algorithms. Even better, I was in great company: eleven incredible visitors from across the country took time out of their busy schedules to join me at Yahoo! Research NYC in an impromptu “prediction market powwow”: Yiling Chen, Sanmay Das, Lance Fortnow, Nicolas Lambert, Abe Othman, Mike Ruberry, Rahul Sami, Florian Teschner, Jenn Wortman Vaughn, Christof Weinhardt, and Lirong Xia. (Plus fellow Yahoos Miro Dudik, Sebastien Lahaie, and David...
2752 days ago
Oddhead Blog wrote a new blog post titled Slipjockey: A marketplace for buying and selling Las Vegas bet slips
In late 2010, I began talking to a very early-stage startup named Slipjockey, based in Salt Lake City. When we first started corresponding, Slipjockey was little more than a good idea coupled with some very basic technology and passionate co-founders. In the time since, Slipjockey has taken appropriate steps to bring their concept to market, including securing a favorable legal opinion and filing a patent for their technology. The core concept of Slipjockey is ingenious. It’s a marketplace for buying and selling Las Vegas bet slips. The process starts when someone makes a bet at a...
2867 days ago
Oddhead Blog wrote a new blog post titled A professional thanks and a personal goodbye to Steve Jobs
10 Print "Hello" That line typed on an Apple II computer in my Dad’s office in the fourth grade got me hooked on computer programming, an addiction I never outgrew. Over the years, I’ve had the pleasure of owning, using, or programming on many of Steve Jobs’s creations, including Apple II+, Macintosh IIcx, Power Mac 7100, Newton, NeXT, Powerbook, Macbook Pro, and iPhone. I’ve been a consistent Mac in the Mac-vs-PC battle since 1984 (though I admit to a brief affair in 1998: it didn’t mean anything, Steve, I swear!). Jobs himself ignited an us-versus-them fire,...
2867 days ago
Oddhead Blog wrote a new blog post titled A professional goodbye and a personal thanks to Carol Bartz
My geek CEO was fired. If you’re wondering whether she deserved it, or Yahoo! is better off for it, or Roy Bostock is a doofus or dorfus, I don’t really know.* But I do have a personal story about Carol Bartz that’s indicative of the kind of CEO she was and the kind of person she is, perfect for Ada Lovelace day, a day to blog about women in science and technology who inspire you. In May 2010, my wife Lauren was diagnosed with breast cancer. On Sunday, May 9, 2010—Mother’s Day no less—I received a phone call. “Hello?,” I said. “Hi, this is Carol...
2867 days ago
Oddhead Blog wrote a new blog post titled Two upcoming NYC-area CS-econ events: AMMA & NYCE Day
The Second Conference on Auctions, Market Mechanisms and Their Applications (AMMA) is next Monday and Tuesday August 22-23, 2011, at CUNY in midtown manhattan. The program, including contributed talks on school choice, prediction markets, advertising, and market design, and invited talks by market designer extraordinaire Peter Cramton and private company stock exchange SecondMarket (where millionaires buy Facebook), look to be excellent. Hope to see you there! The fourth annual New York Computer Science and Economics Day (NYCE Day) is Friday, September 16, 2011, at NYU. You have until next...
2867 days ago
Oddhead Blog wrote a new blog post titled On Intrade CEO John Delaney’s death
A few words on the tragic death last May of John Delaney, the founder and CEO of prediction market company Intrade. John died near the peak of Mount Everest, climbing toward one of his life’s dreams and leaving behind a wife and three children, including one born only days before he died that he never met. John founded Tradesports, a pre-cursor to Intrade, in 2000. Eventually, the non-sports contracts on Tradesports where spun off as Intrade, and Tradesports was shut down in 2008, in hopes of obtaining U.S. regulatory approval. I remember marveling at the technology, featuring ajax-ian...
2867 days ago
Oddhead Blog wrote a new blog post titled 2011 ACM Conference on Electronic Commerce and fifteen other CS conferences in San Jose
If you’re in the Bay Area, come join us at the 2011 ACM Conference on Electronic Commerce, June 5-9 in San Jose, CA, one of sixteen conferences that comprise the ACM Federated Computing Research Conference, the closest thing we have to a unified computer research conference. The main EC’11 conference includes talks on prediction markets, crowdsourcing, auctions, game theory, finance, lending, and advertising. The papers span a spectrum from theoretical to applied. If you want evidence of the latter, look no further than the roster of corporate sponsors: eBay, Facebook, Google,...
2867 days ago