Monday, April 18, 2016

I was amazed to see such curiosity and intuition among high-school students - Mentor Experience by Narender Gupta (Illinois Camp)

The event was good, I liked it for multiple reasons. We talked about ideas that people have not yet been exposed to before they go to college and even then a lot of them were interested. Also, the turnout of roughly 20 students, which was almost double than expected, is a good sign.
Some of the students demanded more features and some who were a step ahead wanted to try combination of features. We would have liked a concrete web source to give out to students after the workshop where they could have access to data and basic machine learning concepts and models. It could also have a compiled list of related website links which could help students get a better understanding of ML and data science. Basically giving the curious students an easy access to this information to follow up with. Overall, it was a really good learning experience for me and I wasn’t expecting students to know as much as they actually did. When I talked about the John Snow cholera problem, some of them actually came up with the idea of putting the data on the map in a geo location manner and visualize the problem, which was really great. In fact, one of them came up with a question on overfitting and underfitting, which totally amazed me. I was surprised that they were even aware of these terms and could think in that tangent.

I discussed how we were analysing the data of just 20 people and facebook needs to analyse data of billions of people. It was amazing to see that they could appreciate the scale of the problem and the need of machine learning to solve it. It was a really humbling experience and would like to be a part of such endeavours in the future.

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