MIRI course list study pairs

by Adele_L 1 min read12th Nov 201322 comments


Inspired by: On learning difficult things

In his recent post, user So8res says his number one piece of advice for learning something difficult is to have study partner to learn with you. 

Since there is a decent amount of interest here in going through the MIRI course list, it might be worth finding other people here to learn and study this with, and to form pairs or groups. 

So here is a space for finding and organizing such partnerships!

Of course, part of the reason I wrote this is because I am interested in learning these books with people. My background: I'm currently a second year Ph.D. student in mathematics (number theory). I'm still pretty new to the type of math emphasized here. I have Probabilistic Graphical ModelsCategory Theory for Computer Scientists and The Logic of Provability (by George Boolos -- not on the course list, but good to get background for the Robust Cooperation paper and for understanding Loeb's theorem) all lying around. I'm also taking a class on numerical analysis. Part of my problem is that I start lots of projects and then end up fizzling out on them, and I hope having a partner will help with this. 

I've already been going through MIRI's publications with a friend from the local LW community, which has been really nice. I'm still interested in finding more partners <insert poly joke here> for going through books on the course list specifically. I'm also willing to explain things I understand, or let someone explain things to me (I've found that explaining things to someone else is a very good way of solidifying your understanding of something) when I have time. 

Some things to consider:

  • What is the best online format for doing this? I've been doing this sort of thing with Workflowy + Mathflowy but there is probably something better. 
  • Does a pair dynamic, or a group dynamic seem more likely to work? I'm hoping that there can be a collection of pairs all centered in a common community, or something like that.
  • If a central community seems like a good idea, how should it be centralized?
  • Probably some other issues/meta stuff.