Thursday, February 9, 2017

Weapons of Math Destruction~Cathy O'Neil | Review

Title: Weapons of Math Destruction
Author: Cathy O'Neil
Genre: Nonfiction
Length: 272 Pages
Release: September 2016

I received a copy of this book through Netgalley. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

This book was not exactly what I was expecting, and I think that had a negative impact on how much I took away from it. The beginning was really promising, but it never really delivered on what it promised. 

With Cathy O'Neil's background in math, I expected to get more information on the algorithms in the various models she was exploring and actual statistics. Obviously she doesn't have all of the numbers and can't access information from big companies and organizations, but I still expected more on the math side of things. An exploration of how the big data is really being used. In some ways that was presented, but it never delved very deeply below the surface. 

For someone unfamiliar with the topics being discussed, who agrees with O'Neil's political stance on many of the issues outlined, this might be more informative. It made me think and gave me some new things to consider, but didn't really shed that much light on topics with which I am unfamiliar. The style of writing was also rather slow and the information somewhat scattered. O'Neil never clearly stated a viable solution to the problems the world is facing with big data. 

This was an interesting read in a lot of ways, but not what I expected.   

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