Data expert to discuss how algorithms decide fate at free UW-Stevens Point talk

STEVENS POINT — Some of the greatest moments in our lives are decided by algorithms — who gets the job, who gets into college, what dating candidates are available, or what social media ads pop up. Learn more about these algorithms in a free lecture at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point.

Presented by New York Times bestselling author and data expert Cathy O’Neil, “Algorithms Don’t Predict the Future, They Cause the Future” will be held from 7-8:30 p.m. on March 29. Attend in person at the University Center’s Dreyfus Hall Laird or online via Zoom webinar.

In his keynote, O’Neil will discuss the inherent bias in these algorithms, raise awareness of the impact on our lives, and how you can opt out. A book signing will follow the event featuring O’Neil’s book, “Weapons of Math Destruction: How Big Data Increases Inequality and Threatens Democracy.” Limited copies will be available at the University store and text rental until 9 p.m. on March 29.

Learn more and register to participate at

O’Neil is the Founder/CEO of ORCAA, an algorithmic auditing firm, a member of the Harvard Kennedy School’s Public Interest Tech Lab, and a regular contributor to Bloomberg Opinion. His new book, “The Shame Machine: Who Profits in the New Age of Humiliation,” will be released later this month.

She was a professor at Barnard College and worked for the DE Shaw hedge fund and for Risk Metrics. In 2013 she co-authored “Doing Data Science” and in 2014 she started a data journalism program at Columbia University. She holds a doctorate in mathematics from Harvard University and was a postdoctoral student in the mathematics department of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Sharon D. Cole