Blog | Hendrik Erz

Academic Website III: Anatomy of a Successful Website

In the last two articles I have introduced reasons for why a personal website may be a great idea, and how you can get your very own domain. Now it is time to think about the actual website itself. There are quite some preconsiderations that will influence what your website will look like. Today, we'll go scouting the web to get some inspiration!

Academic Website II: Choosing a Custom Domain

In the second installment of my academic website article series, I walk you through the intricacies of a custom domain. It is a very powerful tool that you can use to create a brand for yourself, but there are a few pitfalls associated with this. After reading this article, you'll be able to register your very own domain name.

Academic Website I: Why a Personal Website is a Great Idea

Creating a personalized website to present yourself to the world is becoming more and more popular. Many colleagues and acquaintances have asked me over the past two years to explain how I created this website here. Today is finally the day I begin a long series of articles that will tell you everything you need to know to build your very own, personal, academic website.

New Open Access Paper on Text as Data: Variable Extraction via LSTM networks

In today's article I want to share with you a quick TL;DR on a novel paper on text as data that I recently published. Continue reading for some fascinating insights into computational text analysis!

Coding and Keyboards

If you’ve ever written some code – Python, R, or Stata, it really doesn’t matter – and used several different types of keyboard to do that, you may have noticed that writing code is easier on some keyboards and harder on others. In this article I want to dive into the cultural and technological contexts in which programming languages are being developed and how they shape both the structure and the looks of code.

The Old Tricks Still Work Best

Seven years ago, I first worked with a large dataset. Right now, I again am back to the drawing board, trying to massage a huge chunk of data into something I can work with. This made me think of the old days.

The End of 2010s Social Media

For the past decade, the world has gotten used to the famous triad of social media: Facebook, Twitter, and Reddit. However, after the very long dying period of Facebook, Twitter and Reddit have turned into awful experiences over the course of just a few months. Time for some personal reflection on the glorious 2010s of social media.

Why gzip Just Beat a Large Language Model

A paper has shown that a compression algorithm – gzip – outperforms some large language models (LLMs) in some tasks. This has the NLP community in uproar. In this article, I dissect what has just happened, and what it means for language modeling at large.

Messianism in the Age of Artificial General Intelligence

You may have already stumbled upon them: "longtermists" who believe that sentient AI is basically around the corner and will kill us all. In today’s piece, I want to portray this belief as messianist, as a variation of the apocalyptic Christian perspective. Viewed as such, the insistence of these people to warn about impeding doom makes sense, as does the inability of critics to address them.

Swedish Researchers Rise Up Against Current Ethical Review Practices

Every country has its own approach to ethical vetting of research. While many countries have no real prescriptions on that, Sweden decided to do it proper and wrote ethical vetting requirements into its legal code. This has a set of drawbacks, however, and right now, Swedish researchers are rising up against the sometimes detrimental effects that the law can have.

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