Ask Me Anything (AMA) on YouTube Live
July 2017 (assistant professor)
On July 30, 2017, I held my first-ever Ask Me Anything (AMA) session by streaming on YouTube Live and answering viewer questions that they asked in the chat box next to the video stream. I had no idea how it would go, but I ended up answering 29 viewer questions in a bit over an hour. Here is the edited video. I strongly suggest that you watch it on the YouTube website so that you can click the links in the description to jump to each question.
Here are all the questions and their timestamps:
0:00 - When you moved from the University of Rochester to UC San Diego, did you have to start over again in terms of your five-year tenure evaluation period? Also, what usually happens to assistant professors who fail to make tenure?
2:48 - What advice would you give to a computer science undergraduate major that you wished you had heard when you started college?
5:33 - I'm doing my Ph.D. at a top-30 school; how feasible is it for me to get an assistant professor job at a higher-ranked school?
8:20 - What is your opinion on P vs. NP?
9:20 - Is it technically possible for humanity to have already created a powerful A.I. that simply chooses not to reveal itself yet and is lurking dormant on computers across the world?
12:25 - Do you regret using the name "Python Tutor" since a lot more languages are now supported on the site?
16:24 - What motivated you to write Academic High Achievers At Age Thirty and how have the findings affected your own life?
19:35 - Do you have advice for aspiring computer science Ph.D. students to improve their chances of admission if they have been out of school for a while?
21:34 - Will the hype of A.I. have an effect on the academic job market for other CS fields, such as computer systems?
23:10 - Do you still use CDE on a daily basis?
24:31 - How can non-native English speakers become more comfortable with academic writing?
27:16 - What, in your opinion, are some research areas in computer science on the verge of breakthroughs, besides currently-hyped topics such as machine learning?
29:29 - How do you deal with the situation when none of your Ph.D. thesis committee members are experts in the core field of your dissertation?
31:11 - Now that you are on the other side of the table, how does your institution hire professors? What is the process behind the scenes?
33:30 - What is your opinion on the differences between industry and academia for Ph.D.s? What are the differences between being a Ph.D. and non-Ph.D. as a software developer in industry?
35:12 - Do you see any substantial change in higher education within the next ten years due to online education models such as Coursera?
39:15 - Where do all the older people in tech go?
40:58 - Can getting a postdoc at a top-10 school in your field open the door for getting a faculty job at a competitive school?
42:02 - Do you have any advice on porting an existing software project to a different language, such as from C to Python?
43:05 - Do you have any tips for getting into research as an undergraduate student?
44:39 - Have you tried to read The Art of Computer Programming by Donald Knuth? If so, what do you think of it?
46:00 - Do you see data science becoming a mainstream scientific field in academia? If so, how would it relate to more traditional fields such as statistics and computer science?
49:24 - What productivity tools do you use?
51:50 - What advice would you give to someone who has just started to read research papers?
53:59 - Should computer science undergrads interested in going to grad school focus on obtaining more depth or more breadth in terms of research?
56:26 - Who is your favorite computer scientist, or scientist in general?
58:09 - How can non-technical people improve communication with computer science academics? And vice versa.
59:50 - What is your advice for a non-computer-science masters student wanting to learn parallel programming?
1:00:49 - What is the best way to "close the gap" if you are a self-taught programmer without a computer science degree? Is it worth going back to school if you're already in industry?
Last modified: 2017-07-30