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Forecasting: theory and practice

arXiv.org Machine Learning

Forecasting has always been at the forefront of decision making and planning. The uncertainty that surrounds the future is both exciting and challenging, with individuals and organisations seeking to minimise risks and maximise utilities. The large number of forecasting applications calls for a diverse set of forecasting methods to tackle real-life challenges. This article provides a non-systematic review of the theory and the practice of forecasting. We provide an overview of a wide range of theoretical, state-of-the-art models, methods, principles, and approaches to prepare, produce, organise, and evaluate forecasts. We then demonstrate how such theoretical concepts are applied in a variety of real-life contexts. We do not claim that this review is an exhaustive list of methods and applications. However, we wish that our encyclopedic presentation will offer a point of reference for the rich work that has been undertaken over the last decades, with some key insights for the future of forecasting theory and practice. Given its encyclopedic nature, the intended mode of reading is non-linear. We offer cross-references to allow the readers to navigate through the various topics. We complement the theoretical concepts and applications covered by large lists of free or open-source software implementations and publicly-available databases.


The Most Common Artificial Intelligence Misconceptions

#artificialintelligence

The concept of artificial intelligence (AI) is so vast that there are many misconceptions. Artificial intelligence has a great future and will be one of the essential tools for organisations in the future. Millions of people have lost their jobs due to the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic and now the machines will take away even more jobs from workers, according to the World Economic Forum. Artificial intelligence will soon rule every single aspect of our life from online shopping to smart cities, quantum computing, blockchain, autonomous vehicles, and cybersecurity. Today's artificial intelligence as well as machine learning, deep learning, and neural networks are driven by statistics, big data analytics, processes, methods, techniques and algorithms.


The Role of Social Movements, Coalitions, and Workers in Resisting Harmful Artificial Intelligence and Contributing to the Development of Responsible AI

arXiv.org Artificial Intelligence

There is mounting public concern over the influence that AI based systems has in our society. Coalitions in all sectors are acting worldwide to resist hamful applications of AI. From indigenous people addressing the lack of reliable data, to smart city stakeholders, to students protesting the academic relationships with sex trafficker and MIT donor Jeffery Epstein, the questionable ethics and values of those heavily investing in and profiting from AI are under global scrutiny. There are biased, wrongful, and disturbing assumptions embedded in AI algorithms that could get locked in without intervention. Our best human judgment is needed to contain AI's harmful impact. Perhaps one of the greatest contributions of AI will be to make us ultimately understand how important human wisdom truly is in life on earth.


Advances in Machine Learning for the Behavioral Sciences

arXiv.org Machine Learning

The areas of machine learning and knowledge discovery in databases have considerably matured in recent years. In this article, we briefly review recent developments as well as classical algorithms that stood the test of time. Our goal is to provide a general introduction into different tasks such as learning from tabular data, behavioral data, or textual data, with a particular focus on actual and potential applications in behavioral sciences. The supplemental appendix to the article also provides practical guidance for using the methods by pointing the reader to proven software implementations. The focus is on R, but we also cover some libraries in other programming languages as well as systems with easy-to-use graphical interfaces.