Top Podcast Notes on Smash Notes - Week 24

Why is Caterpillar Inc suing Cat & Cloud?

"Cat & Cloud" already have the trademark, and they are always using it in conjunction with the word "cloud." Meanwhile, Caterpillar Inc,
the maker of heavy machinery making over 54 billion dollars in revenue last year, is still suing this coffee shop in in an attempt to reverse their trademark around the word "Cat". Why?

As it's indicated by the podcast hosts, Caterpillar is doing this to a number of small businesses because they have a trademark for the work "Cat" as an abbreviation to the word "Caterpillar."

What should be the first thing to validate about my startup idea?

Test the most difficult and riskiest part of your business first. It doesn't help anyone if you validate that easy parts work, if the whole business falls apart when the hard parts don't. You might as well find that out right away.

Why might we think that the Founding Fathers of the United States did not intend for the Second Amendment to be interpreted in its current form?

When the Constitution was written, gun ownership was not thought of as means of protection for a family. Gunpowder was very explosive so you would not want to actually store it in your home, and guns were very basic, where it would take a minute just to reload it after shooting. If someone were to break into your house at the time, you would not use a gun as first means of defence.

As times went by, however, the social norms around gun ownership have changed and the focus on self-defence have become more prevalent, to the point where the Supreme Court justices are now interpreting the second amendment in a way in which it was perhaps not intended.

What is an example difference between a typical education for an eight-year-old and what Ad Astra teaches?

In a traditional school kids might learn about art, it's history, some geography ...etc. Meanwhile, at Ad Astra they would be put to work on a complex project, structured around a purpose. For example, kids would be asked to run a simulation around a business problem of how to make money from a limited collection of art. They would compete with their fellow classmates, optimizing for revenue, planning around various geographical and other constraints. Teaching in such environment takes on a form of a college entrepreneurship class more so than just book knowledge around various facts.

Why is machine teaching more effective than machine learning?

In order to perform "machine learning", we must first collect a large dataset and teach the machine to distinguish that data, learning what makes for the right answer in the process, based on our guidance. We teach the machine to memorize and to pattern-match. Humans don't learn like that. Instead, we learn to ask the right questions about the data, and use those to make choices.

If we could skip the costly dataset training and instead use the labeling directives to teach the machines to understand, it could save a lot of money and make machine learning more efficient.


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