The “classical stack” of Software 1.0 is what we’re all familiar with — it is written in languages such as Python, C++, etc...Software 2.0 is written in much more abstract, human unfriendly language, such as the weights of a neural network.

Benefits of Software 2.0

  • Computationally homogeneous
  • Simple to bake into silicon
  • Constant running time
  • Constant memory use
  • Highly portable
  • Agile
  • Modules can meld into an optimal whole
  • It is better than you

Limitations of Software 2.0

At the end of the optimization we’re left with large networks that work well, but it’s very hard to tell how. Across many applications areas, we’ll be left with a choice of using a 90% accurate model we understand, or 99% accurate model we don’t.

The 2.0 stack can fail in unintuitive and embarrassing ways ,or worse, they can “silently fail”

...the existence of adversarial examples and attacks highlights the unintuitive nature of this stack.

Programming Software 2.0

If you recognize Software 2.0 as a new and emerging programming paradigm instead of simply treating neural networks as a pretty good classifier in the class of machine learning techniques, the extrapolations become more obvious, and it’s clear that there is much more work to do.

In particular, we’ve built up a vast amount of tooling that assists humans in writing 1.0 code, such as powerful IDEs with features like syntax highlighting, debuggers, profilers, go to def, git integration, etc. In the 2.0 stack, the programming is done by accumulating, massaging and cleaning datasets. Who is going to develop the first Software 2.0 IDEs, which help with all of the workflows in accumulating, visualizing, cleaning, labeling, and sourcing datasets?

Github is a very successful home for Software 1.0 code. Is there space for a Software 2.0 Github? In this case repositories are datasets and commits are made up of additions and edits of the labels.

Traditional package managers and related serving infrastructure like pip, conda, docker, etc. help us more easily deploy and compose binaries. How do we effectively deploy, share, import and work with Software 2.0 binaries? What is the conda equivalent for neural networks?

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