Earth globe crowded with people
Personal Insights

Why 8 Billion People on Earth Are Not Too Many: The growing global population brings more opportunities to make the world a better place.

The population of Earth officially reached 8 billion this week. Hooray! It’s hard to imagine what so many people are up to. While I hope that humanity can learn how to leave only gentle footprints on the planet, I’m excited about the creativity and inventiveness that a growing human population...
Andrew Ng with a welcome message displayed on a laptop
Personal Insights

Imposter Syndrome: Don't Let It Hold You Back

In this letter, I’d like to address the serious matter of newcomers to AI sometimes experiencing imposter syndrome, where someone — regardless of their success in the field — wonders if they’re a fraud and really belong in the AI community.
A stack of academic research papers are locked up with chains
Personal Insights

Scientific Research Wants to be Free: US Officials Block Paywalls on Gov-Funded Studies

I’m thrilled! Paywalled journals that block free access to scientific research are the bane of the academic community.
People Hugging
Personal Insights

How to Keep the AI Community Growing

Many things in life have a positive side and a negative side. For instance, a new AI system might help democratize access, and at the same time it might be more accessible to people who have internet access than those who don’t.
Excerpt from "The New Colossus" by Emma Lazarus, cast in a plaque
Personal Insights

Welcoming Refugees

I’ve always thought that how you treat those who are powerless shows your true character. People rarely mistreat others who have power over them -- for example, their boss — because they might suffer adverse consequences.
Sleigh made of gift boxes
Personal Insights

The Spirit of Giving in AI and Beyond

As we approach the end of 2021, you may be winding down work and gearing up for the winter holiday. I’m looking forward to taking a break from work and hope you are too.
Project management cartoon
Personal Insights

Solving AI Problems With Civility

I’m grateful to the AI community for the friendships it has brought me and the benefits it has brought to billions of people. But members of the AI community don’t always honor one another.
Andrew Ng playing piano
Personal Insights

Background Music: Pleasure or Pitfall?

Years ago, whenever I had to do something boring or unpleasant — such as drive to work or go for a run — I used to listen to music to provide a distraction. Although I still appreciate music, as I got older I decided to cut out distractions.
Hand-drawn letter with a heart and signed by Andrew
Personal Insights

Are You OK? Taking Care of Emotional and Mental Health

Since the pandemic started, several friends and teammates have shared with me privately that they were not doing well emotionally. I’m grateful to each person who trusted me enough to tell me this. How about you — are you doing okay?
Calendar pages flying away
Personal Insights

Make Every Day Count

Last Sunday was my birthday. That got me thinking about the days leading to this one and those that may lie ahead.As a reader of The Batch, you’re probably pretty good at math. But let me ask you a question, and please answer from your gut, without calculating.
Tents in the street
Personal Insights

Privilege and Obligation

Over the past weekend, I happened to walk by a homeless encampment and went over to speak with some of the individuals there. I spoke with a homeless man who seemed to be partially speaking with me, and partially speaking with other people that I could not see.
Andrew Ng holding a cup, small christmas tree behind
Personal Insights

The Power of Gratitude

Every year for the past decade, I flew to Singapore or Hong Kong to celebrate my mother’s birthday with her on December 22. This year, for the first time, we did it via Zoom.
Cat sleeping
Personal Insights

The Power of Sleep

I received a copy of Why We Sleep: Unlocking the Power of Sleep and Dreams as a Christmas gift — back in the pre-Covid era — and finished it last weekend. This book by Matthew Walker, director of UC Berkeley’s sleep and neuroimaging lab, is a useful reminder of the importance of sleep...
People's fingers forming a triangle
Personal Insights

Staying Connected Amid the Pandemic

I recently received an email from one of you who lives far from the major AI hubs, saying, “I feel like I’m all alone.” I want to tell you all...
Neural network over a world map
Personal Insights

Covid-19: How to Flatten the Curve

In the earlier weeks of Covid-19, I didn’t want to contribute noise, so that experts in infectious disease could be heard. But now the situation has worsened. I spoke yesterday with Eric Topol, a cardiologist at Scripps Institute and author of Deep...

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