State University of New York Institute of Technology
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Algorithm to Uncover Wrongful Convictions

The famous mathematician Geoge Cantor once said "Mathematics is entirely free in its development, and its concepts are only linked by the necessity of being consistent, and are co-ordinated with concepts introduced previously by means of precise definitions." Sreedevi Nair a member of WID studies quantitative patterns on how criminal cases are overturned. Ms. Nair is seeking to create and algorithm not only to uncover past wrongful convictions but also to prevent wrongful convictions from occurring in the first place. This may sound like an excellent idea for keeping good people out of jail I personally feel as though humans have a sixth sense which may help detect certain attributes that an algorithm just can't. I do however believe that as an ever evolving society it could be an excellent instrument for assisting jurors and judges come to a decision. With that said I can already see how corrupt people may try to utilize a tool like the algorithm for selfish gain or wrongful convictions as a result of tampering with program. I can't recall the name of the movie but it had similar idea behind it. Throughout the movie the star realized the justice system in place although it appeared to be a perfect crime preventing mathematical based system it was actually ran a large corporation seeking to eliminate competition. I'm not saying that this would be the case with Ms. Nair's algorithm but we should most definitely be wary when peoples livelihood hangs in the balance.


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