I used to bump into Professor Fano in the halls. I recall he made an observation to the effect, "Americans are very generous unless they think they are being played for a sucker, in which case they become very mean spirited." I thought (and still think) that was very insightful. It explains a lot of politics.

On Fri, Jul 12, 2019 at 11:46 PM Lawrence Stewart <stewart@serissa.com> wrote:
Fano was an information theorist of some note.  He’s known for his role in the Shannon-Fano algorithm for data compression (very similar to Huffman coding) and for the “Fano Algorithm” for decoding convolutional error correcting codes.

In the old days of limited computation, the Fano algorithm was a reasonable choice, but in these modern days everyone uses the Viterbi Algorithm instead, which requires more computation and state, but is guaranteed to give the best answer.


I think Fano falls into the “Research Laboratory of Electronics” group of MIT folks who do communications engineering, rather than the “CSAIL” group of computer scientists.  Of course there is a fair amount of crossover, such as Dina Katabi.

> On 2019, Jul 12, at 9:12 PM, Dave Horsfall <dave@horsfall.org> wrote:
> We lost him in 2016, and he used to work at MIT; unfortunately that's all the details that I have for him (apart from being born 11/11/17).
> -- Dave
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