Daniel Lemire's blog

, 3 min read

How to recognize important problems

4 thoughts on “How to recognize important problems”

  1. Sérgio says:

    Right off the top of my head two current problems:

    – Management of large collections of digital media (photos, video, audio). People are accumulating more and more and it is getting harder to find and share items. Microsoft has very good research on this.

    – Digital preservation. The long time preservation of digital content is still unsolved and is an active research field.

    I think that there are a lot of important problems related to UI. Technology is still hard for non professionals.

    Nice blog 😉

  2. I grant you these Sérgio.

    Having a system to manage data is a hard problem. As a database researcher, I try to contribute toward this problem and I think collaboration is part of the solution. We are slowly moving away from top-down solutions, such as rigid taxonomies and ontologies. So maybe I could say I work on this problem, if indirectly.

    Digital preservation is a nasty nail. Project Gutenberg is one instance where it works ok. I also worked on this.

    So, maybe I am working on some important problems, after all.

  3. Peter Turney says:

    I just read the Hamming talk that you link to. It was great. Thanks for pointing it out.

  4. Andre Vellino says:

    My vote goes to “better programming methodologies”. There is still a huge chasm, IMO, between informal software specifications and formal programming paradigms. So far, we have “imperative” (c, pascal, modula2 etc.) “functional” (lisp, haskel, miranda etc.) “logic” (prolog, goedel etc.) and “object oriented” (smalltalk, c#, java etc.) – but none of them are terribly satisfying? Some UI ideas in StP (Software through Pictures) ended up in UIs for UML etc, but I feel quite sure that there’s lots of room for improvement.