Author: Racism Exists in Math and More

latina woman factory worker warehouse math graphs

A new book by mathematician Cathy O’Neil details the ways that math is being “used” to create (both intentionally and unintentionally) further racial inequities and inequalities in the United States. In a new book entitled Weapons of Math Destruction, O’Neil shows how algorithms and data, which are used in everything from targeted advertising to insurance rates to police presence, are often being used against minorities. “I worried about the separation between technical models and real people, and about the moral repercussions of that separation,” O’Neil wrote in the book. In her book, O’Neil’s models all use proxies as stand-ins for what people are actually trying to measure. For example, police officers analyze zip codes to deploy patrols, employers also use ...

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