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  1. Free, publicly-accessible full text available September 1, 2023
  2. A popular line of recent research incorporates ML advice in the design of online algorithms to improve their performance in typical instances. These papers treat the ML algorithm as a blackbox, and redesign online algorithms to take advantage of ML predictions. In this paper, we ask the complementary question: can we redesign ML algorithms to provide better predictions for online algorithms? We explore this question in the context of the classic rent-or-buy problem, and show that incorporating optimization benchmarks directly in ML loss functions leads to significantly better performance, while maintaining a worst-case adversarial result when the advice is completely wrong. We support this finding both through theoretical bounds and numerical simulations, and posit that “learning for optimization” is a fertile area for future research.
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available July 1, 2023
  3. Abstract Gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) are flashes of high-energy radiation arising from energetic cosmic explosions. Bursts of long (greater than two seconds) duration are produced by the core-collapse of massive stars 1 , and those of short (less than two seconds) duration by the merger of compact objects, such as two neutron stars 2 . A third class of events with hybrid high-energy properties was identified 3 , but never conclusively linked to a stellar progenitor. The lack of bright supernovae rules out typical core-collapse explosions 4–6 , but their distance scales prevent sensitive searches for direct signatures of a progenitor system. Only tentative evidence for a kilonova has been presented 7,8 . Here we report observations of the exceptionally bright GRB 211211A, which classify it as a hybrid event and constrain its distance scale to only 346 megaparsecs. Our measurements indicate that its lower-energy (from ultraviolet to near-infrared) counterpart is powered by a luminous (approximately 10 42  erg per second) kilonova possibly formed in the ejecta of a compact object merger.
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 8, 2023
  4. Human-AI collaboration is an increasingly commonplace part of decision-making in real world applications. However, how humans behave when collaborating with AI is not well understood. We develop metacognitive bandits, a computational model of a human's advice-seeking behavior when working with an AI. The model describes a person's metacognitive process of deciding when to rely on their own judgment and when to solicit the advice of the AI. It also accounts for the difficulty of each trial in making the decision to solicit advice. We illustrate that the metacognitive bandit makes decisions similar to humans in a behavioral experiment. We also demonstrate that algorithm aversion, a widely reported bias, can be explained as the result of a quasi-optimal sequential decision-making process. Our model does not need to assume any prior biases towards AI to produce this behavior.
  5. Free, publicly-accessible full text available July 1, 2023