Ethics and Values — Fundamental ideas that shape our decisions

Our Ethics and Values — In a nutshell. Photo by Jesse Dodds on Unsplash

We can make mistakes

We do not take an authoritative stance in any domain that we work in or wish to become one. We don’t mind accepting our mistakes, disclosing and rectifying them when we learn about them. It is what makes learning possible.

We take responsibility

We take responsibility even in the smallest of the things that we do. Being ethical is most important to us, and we don’t mind declining projects that conflict with our principles. Our undertaking is regardless of any term duration.

We should allow for human judgement

Machines and algorithms are fastly overtaking places that were once managed by humans. Our stance discourages any systems or organizations that believe that they are aware of all possible scenarios. Or do not have the flexibility to incorporate unseen or complex real situations.

We should embrace complexity

Real-world is complex, and we do not believe in simplifying everything for the sake of aesthetics. We can progressively disclose complexity, but complexity itself has value, and reducing it at the cost of losing information does not.

We should make actions reversible

We believe anyone can make mistakes, including both humans and machines. Successfully reversing errors as much as possible could be as crucial as life-saving and hence is an integral principle for everything we design.

We should design for failure

Despite how well it is designed, any system can face unseen challenges. We can always control only so many things, and actively imagining such situations can create more robust systems, if not infallible.

We should provide context

We live in a world that is flooded with information, where each one of us lives in such unique settings. Whether it is a communication from us or an interface we design, we make an active effort to provide context to make the best sense of provided information without referring to anything else.

We should be consistent

We tend to pick up something more quickly when familiar to us. We believe that being consistent in our visual aesthetics, communication, and format will aid in consuming information and your association with Mathscapes.

We should not force technology or design

Despite being in the domain of research/technology, we oppose the idea of Techno-solutionism. We believe that social problems cannot be solved using technology. Nor should we impose anything, let alone technology, to force them to change their ways of working.

We believe that algorithmic complexity is beyond space and time

Computer scientists often measure the merits of algorithms in terms of space and time complexity. We believe that it presents a limited view. Hence, we hope to leverage maths to encourage more people to look at algorithms through more lenses.

We believe in creating systems that are reusable and modular

Looking at something mathematically can help us distill its schema to abstract or define complex, unique characteristics without the need for redundant systems. Creating simpler, modular systems will reduce the time to design them and more effectively repair them.

We believe in open-source and lesser restricted licenses

We strongly believe in keeping everything that we make free and open, enabling as many people to utilize them in their work. It also implies that we do not undertake projects resulting in exclusive licensing.

We believe that everyone is different

We believe each of us is unique and different, and generalizing our characteristics, capabilities, or anything could be very limiting. We are open to listening and creating unique ways of doing that works best for all involved people and systems.

We believe that ambiguity could be important

As much as possible, we seek clarity and reflect the same in our work. However, it is sometimes best to keep things unresolved to retain their richness and uncertainty. We believe ambiguity could also help lead us to un-imagined places.

Written by Gaurav Singh. Last updated on 24 Jan 2022.