Choccolate tasting

I cannot on any site find a chocolate tasting experience similar to the one I had, so I describe it here.

First of all, let me say that I only like Lindt chocolate. All the other “supermarket” ones, I just don't like them. The ones from specialised chocolate shops are at best like Lindt but cost 10-100 times as much.

Now, in France where I live there are two 'black 85%' Lindt bars, one of which is called 'sweet'. They are very different, but contrary to the name, not in the 'sweet' aspect.

The 'sweet' has more cocoa butter, when you touch it, it melts a little, becoming oily. The break of the bar is not sharp. Above all, it 'melts' in the mouth, leaving a very good but… homogeneous, flat, constant taste. The other 85%, on the other hand, breaks in the mouth, melting more slowly, but above all, it gives 'flashes' of intense flavour, which may last a few seconds, but are those things that you remember for a lifetime (who knows, one day the 'Antonello bar' will become famous :-) ).

I believe that the 'sweet' is 'easier' to eat for the uninitiated to dark chocolate, but the latter offers greater gratification

2022/08/30 22:56 · antonello · 0 Comments

Macron and "emmerder" the no-vax..

Non-vaccination changes the relationship between benefits and burdens between a citizen and society, and so I consider it 'normal' that a number of restrictions are placed on a non-vaccinatee in order to preserve the rights of the collective. But any public action must have this as its objective. It is not as if you can force a non-vaccinated person to blow the trumpet on the balcony at all hours just for “revenge” or to “make life difficult for them”. Any policy restricting their freedom must be justified by the need to limit the risk that the non-vaccinated person poses to society, otherwise they are right when they speak of dictatorship. Then, on the vulgar term, let's leave it alone, it makes it clear that Macron has an elitist attitude light years away from what he considers the “ox people”.

2022/01/05 13:50 · antonello · 0 Comments

CI (Confidence Intervals) can do more harm than good

In academia, you have a certain pressure to present / publish your results with some indication of the confidence you have in them, and often you do that by indicating the Confidence Interval, that is the range you claim that the true value of what you are estimating is actually within, given a certain probability (…almost, frequentists please forgive me).

Now, the problem is that it is really, really hard you can account for _all_ sort of variability in the process that you are studying. So at the end what you claim confidence in, is just a little subset of the variability and by putting CI you are deceiving your target to be more confident than what they should actually be.

I have one example: I have a sister that love to consult weather sites… so she can collect the temperature for tomorrow for a given town in several sites and then come with an estimation and a CI. The problem is that most sites actually implement slightly different versions of the same algorithm given raw measures or raw estimations, if not tacking the data directly from the same source (generally, MeteoFrance here). So they all provide roughly the same prediction, and the CI you put is deceiving.

Mathematically the problem is that in setting the CI you assume that each observation is independent, when actually is not. This is why it is important to check and correct for correlation before reporting the confidence you are in your estimations.

2021/05/19 07:53 · antonello · 0 Comments

A smart spider

So, this week-end I decided to get a break to my Machine Learning course and paint a bit of stuff, including the kid's wood house.

There is a side with a plastic windows, and my task was to paint the wood, trying to go as much as possible with the brush inside the hole between the wood and the plastic:

Now, while I did just started from the top, a spider that was hidden in the hole between the plastic and the wood a bit more down, did the first smart thing: he (or she?) did come out. He learned that if I would have continued, I would have reach his hideout with the brush and killed him. He did a second smart thing: he went on the windows, on the plastic side, not on the wood side. Then he waited a bit, and as I was painting the wood from up to down… he moved across the plastic side to go up “against the gradient” and reach a calm, safe area.

I wander what is the neural structure that even in a such a simple creature allowed him to make the right decisions to maximise his fitness and how much powerful computers we would need to match these abilities.

2020/04/28 08:39 · antonello · 0 Comments

I problemi della grande distribuzione in Italia

Scrivo oggi che è uscita la notizia “ufficiale” dell'acquisizione di Conad su Auchan Italia, ed insomma in un momento in cui tutti sono concordi nell'affermare che il “modello ipermercato” è in crisi. Si, è in crisi, ma una delle ragioni che pochi evocano è la (mancanza di) differenziazione tra le varie catene. Qui in Italia (ma anche in Francia dove, infatti, si manifestano gli stessi problemi) i supermercati e gli ipermercati son tutti uguali. Si va al più prossimo o (si andava) al più grande. Se prendo il caso invece dell'Inghilterra, anche grazie ad una quota di prodotti a marchio del supermercato molto più elevata, i supermercati sono molto meglio differenziati. Se vuoi il prodotto più economico vai all'ASDA o ad ALDI, se vuoi il più buono vai da Morrisons, e gli altri in un continuum dove comunque ciascuno ha caratteristiche specifiche ben definite e sopratutto percepite dal cliente. Ecco, forse quello che ci vorrebbe in Italia è un riposizionamento delle varie catene dove ciascuna si trovi la sua nicchia specifica di mercato, senza contare solamente sul fattore spaziale o dimensionale.

2019/05/14 12:31 · antonello · 0 Comments

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