Jordan Thayer, PhD

AI Practice Lead

Recent Articles

Record Deduplication

I have a relative that frequently has medical problems. This despite the fact that he’s a healthy young man. His problem is that he has too many names. He’s James-Robert, but depending on whom you ask, you’ll hear him called: Jim Bob Robert James Jim-Bob He has five names at least, and that’s before considering […]
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How Visualizations Lead To Advances in Artificial Intelligence

Heuristic search is a subfield of artificial intelligence.  It is the study of algorithms meant for general problem solving. The problems solved with heuristic search come from a variety of domains, including: Aligning genetic sequences Planning routes between two cities Scheduling elevators in a building Scheduling work orders in a machine shop These varried domains […]
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A Brief Evaluation of Cloud ML Tools

Originally published here. The Goal Someone recently told me in passing that they wished they had a machine learning sandbox. I didn’t know what that was exactly, but I had a few ideas about what it might be. I wrote down some notes about what I thought a machine learning sandbox might do for someone, […]
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Death Stranding: A Playground of Algorithms

Taken by Sergey Galyonkin from Raleigh, USA – E3 2018 Death Stranding was a surreal experience for several reasons. First, the game has a werid story line that’s a little hard to follow at times; exactly what you’d expect from the game’s director Hideo Kojima. Secondly, I’m still not used to seeing recognizable famous people […]
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Using Pipelines to Lower Barriers To Entry in Machine Learning

Many people are keenly interested in machine learning, and with good reason. Machine learning is applicable to a wide variety domains, including engineering, education, healthcare, and government. The broad applicability of machine learning is a double edged sword: Although an ever increasing pool of people want to use machine learning, a decreasing portion of them […]
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Five Things I Learned Working with Software Engineers

Introduction Hi, I’m Jordan Thayer, and I’m a research scientist by training. I got my PhD in 2012 from the University of New Hampshire, where I focused on Artificial Intelligence. My undergraduate degree  was in Computer Science too; I got that from Rose-Hulman back in 2006. I’ve been programming things for about as long as […]
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Accidental AI: 5 Everyday AI Problems

Introduction People often ask questions like “What is AI?”, or “Is AI worth of the hype?”.Both questions are non-trivial to answer, but let’s start with the first one:”What is AI?”. This is a perennial favorite at academic conferences on AI for a few reasons: Every AI researcher has to have an opinion, since it’s their […]
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Planning for Randomizers

Introduction I’m a big fan of videogames. I like small, well defined boxes where I can get better at some task. I like measuring myself against my peers. As such, it’s probably no great surprise that I like speedrunning and randomizers. For the unititiated, speedrunning is trying to beat some game as quickly as possible. […]
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Distributing Depth First Search to the Masses

Last Time Last time we talked about techniques for exchanging processor (and developer) time for reduced will clock time in heuristic search.  In other words, we talked about how to use multiple cores on a single machine to solve a problem faster.  That worked pretty well, but we noticed that it couldn’t scale beyond the […]
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