Learning Machine Learning and NLP from 187 Quora Questions

Machine Learning is a hot subject these days.  And as with any other hot subject, there is a multitude of books, online course, videos, and guides available all over the web.  I think that this curated list of  187 Quora questions is an interesting way of approaching the subject.

While Quora has FAQ pages for many topics (e.g. FAQ for Machine Learning), they are far from comprehensive. In this post, I’ve tried to provide a more thorough Quora FAQ for several machine learning and NLP topics.

Quora doesn’t have much structure, and many questions you find on the site are either poorly answered or extremely specific. I’ve tried to include only popular questions that have good answers on general interest topics.

Trust in Automation

Trust in Automation is by far the best thing I’ve read on the subjects of artificial intelligence and machine learning, and their affects on human society.  There are plenty of links and quotes that make you think and want you to learn more … until you don’t.  It’s not depressing, but it is quite concerning.  Here are a couple of quotes from the article (some of them are quotes of other people), which I liked:

As the cost of labor goes up and the cost of machinery goes down, at some point, it’ll be cheaper to use machines than people. With the increase in productivity, the GDP goes up, but so does unemployment. What do you do? … The best way is to reduce the time a certain portion of the population spends living, and then find ways to keep them busy.

—Jingfang Hao, Folding Beijing (2014)

Also this one:

If you think discrimination is bad today, just wait until the machines take over. They will discriminate based on the the shade of your iris, the shape of your brow, the size of a tatoo, or any arbitrary collection of low-level traits whose presence triggers a subtle bias.