Open(ish) Machine Learning News
Updates on the intersection of ML and open.


A bearded man in a suit, holding a scepter, in front of a town. After the style of the engraved frontispiecHobbes’ Leviathan.

Is this thing on? / 2023-08-20

Catching up on power, Facebook, and a range of miscellany.
9 min read
1800s shopkeeper, seen from behind, looking at their store with shelves full of goods

Taking stock of open(ish) machine learning / 2023-06-15

I’ve been writing this newsletter for about six months, so I thought it might be a good time to pause the news firehose, and instead review and synthesize what I’ve learned about the potential for open(ish?) machine learning. That took a while — so thanks for your patience, and welcome back!
15 min read
A man wearing a suit and hat, speaking into an old-fashioned microphone, taken from behind. Black and white.

Maps and Legends / 2023-05-02

Micro-essays on the commons and model copyrightability; new open(ish) tools; and a lot more.
6 min read
Sailboats in front of a church, with trees and birds, in the style of a pencil sketch.

Live from Sweden / 2023-04-19

Upcoming public panel moderation; shifting power via foundation models (open or not); public ability to understand via great WaPo visualization; modularity; and more.
5 min read
A robot carrying a broom, sweeping away lawyers and books of law. 1800s-magazine style.

thought experiments / 2023-03-30

A busy week: copyrightability, throwbacks to late-90s monopoly concerns, who is a coder anyway, permission culture revisited, artistic typography, and so much more.
8 min read
Pile of giant easter eggs in an Italian town square, generated by Midjourney

it’s a lot / 2023-03-19

Two mini-essays on the Open Data Definition and why OpenAI’s non-profit/for-profit split can be legal (but might not be), and many news bytes from a busy week.
11 min read
Foreground: a pile of lumber, vaguely structured in the shape of a house. Background: blue skies, trees.

structure is good / 2023-03-12

Focusing on some key themes, via deployment on laptops, government algorithms, a blog post from Anthropic, an intro to foundation models, and more.
5 min read
A body of water with a single person holding an umbrella and cloudy skies above. Mostly grey.

getting serious / 2023-03-05

An observation from the Linux Foundation Legal Summit; Apache grapples with ML; adversarial data; memes explained; and muuuch more.
8 min read
Flock of birds over large pieces of paper that look like contracts (AI-generated image)

layers and lawyers, oh my / 2023-02-06

Long pondering on when the giants of the space might fight for fair use, or compromise; an observation on the state of open data governance; news on attribution; memorization of (some images); and two weeks of miscellany.
9 min read
A drawing of windblown trees along an ocean coast, in muted grey and green colors, as generated by Midjourney.

Power, accountability, speed: pick (one?) / 2023-01-20

Updates, including data from Hugging Face, new litigation, and thoughts on power.
5 min read