Erin Kelly on what her artificial intelligence algorithm reveals about latest developments in the race. –—
No 2671 Posted by fw, October 18, 2020 –
“Back in 2016 not many pollsters correctly predicted Donald Trump’s climb on his way to winning the White House. But that was just one in a long line of correct predictions made by Polly, the artificial intelligence algorithm. Erin Kelly is president and CEO of Advanced Symbolics Inc., the Ottawa-based company that put Polly [name given to AI algorithm] into action. And Erin Kelly joins us now from the nation’s capital for the latest in the US and some local issues too.” —Nam Kiwanuka, host, The Agenda, TVO
The Agenda, TVO’s flagship current-affairs program, hosted by Steve Paikin and Nam Kiwanuka, explores social, political, cultural, and economic issues. On its October 16, 2020 show, host Nam Kiwanuka questioned Erin Kelly of Advanced Symbolics Inc. about what Polly, her AI pollster, is finding out about the latest developments in the U.S. presidential election.
Here, in bulletted format, is my transcript of Erin’s response to Nam’s opening question: What does Polly have to say about the race for the presidency in the United States?
Below is my repost of my embedded You Tube video of the discussion, along with my transcript of the opening 7:29-minute conversation with Erin, featuring my added chronological index to the video, selected bulletted formatting to highlight Erin’s main points, text highlighting, and links to the map Erin mentioned.
Alternatively, to watch the video of the Q&A on The Agenda’s website, without my transcript of course, click on the following linked title.
0.00 — Nam Kiwanuka (NK) – Back in 2016 not many pollsters correctly predicted Donald Trump’s climb on his way to winning the White House. But that was just one in a long line of correct predictions made by Polly, the artificial intelligence algorithm. Erin Kelly is president and CEO of Advanced Symbolics Inc., the Ottawa-based company that put Polly into action. And Erin Kelly joins us now from the nation’s capital for the latest in the US and some local issues too.
Hi Erin. So nice to have you’re here. Excited to hear what you’re saying tonight. So, you know, last night it was supposed to be a debate and then President Trump had the coronavirus and then the debate commission suggested having a virtual debate which he declined. Joe Biden decided to have a town hall, and then President Trump had a town hall on a competing network. Ha. All in one night.
We have a graphic here. Here’s where the candidates stand. Biden is leading by a wide margin on both the electoral college and popular vote.
What does Polly have to say about the race for the presidency in the United States, Erin?
1:05 – Erin Kelly (EK) –
2:06 – NK – That’s interesting. Why is that?
2:08 – EK – Well, there’s a meme, if you will, going around the United States, you know, the sort of “Sleepy Joe” marketing that the Republicans have put out and it has taken hold with people who wonder if Mr. Biden is too old. And there’s a rumor that he’s not as sharp as he used to be. And, in fact, he isn’t as good on his feet and as good a debater as Mr. Trump. I mean people can debate that, but he’s not as quick as Mr. Trump. And so we found in the debates slightly favour Mr. Trump. So not having that and allowing Mr. Biden to speak and to address the nation would actually be favourable to him.
2:44 – NK – You know, in 2016 a lot of polls showed that Hillary Clinton would defeat Donald Trump. We know how that turned out – they were wrong. What were the challenges of polling during the 2016 presidential election?
2:60 – EK – Well, in the 2016 election there were two main problems –
4:24 – NK – That is so fascinating because now the polls are suggesting that presidential candidate Biden is in the lead. Is there a path to victory for President Trump?
4:34 – EK –
5:26 – NK – I mean the election is 2 weeks plus away, which is a lifetime in politics. When it comes to the lead up to an election do you worry the polls results can shape public opinion or, in your view, are polls a reflection of public opinion?
5:45 – EK – In my view [the polls are] a reflection of public opinion. But it’s definitely a big concern that they affect public opinion, and I think the political parties believe that. One of the reasons we don’t work for political parties, we don’t take contracts from political parties is because often political parties will use these as weapons. And if you’re working for a political party they’ll say, “Well if the poll isn’t favourable to my party, you can’t publish, or you can’t speak to the media.” And so definitely the parties believe that. I think there is evidence that that happens. In this particular case, I think Mr. Biden is so far ahead that it’s not as much of an issue in this election.
6:23 – NK – Can Polly tell us anything about what issues are motivating American voters right now?
6:28 – EK – Yes, for sure.
7:18 – NK – And we should mention that there’s no evidence to suggest that that is happening. It’s just something that’s been put out be Trump’s side. Right?
7:27 – EK – It’s rumours.
[At this point, Nam Kiwanuka shifts the conversation to Canadian politics]
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