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Y in the Valley is a podcast featuring leading founders and thinkers, shining a light on how they build companies, products and culture in a wave of accelerated change. Hosted by Ashish Toshniwal, CEO and cofounder of YML, an award-winning digital product and design agency.
 
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“Get used to the grind.” Despite saying those words with a smile, Sasha Siddhartha, Co-founder and CTO of Thrive Market, doesn't sugarcoat it. The path to building a company is arduous, and Sasha unpacks how he’s built his company, Thrive Market, the online grocer dedicated to organic and natural foods, from an idea with friends to a national groce…
 
Armando Solar-Lezama is a Professor at MIT, and the Associate Director & COO of CSAIL. He leads the Computer Assisted Programming Group, focused on program synthesis.Armando’s PhD thesis is titled, "Program Synthesis by Sketching", which he completed in 2008 at UC Berkeley.We talk about program synthesis & his work on Sketch, how machine learning's…
 
The future is electric — just ask Gregor Hembrough, President of Polestar USA, a Swedish, electric vehicle company rapidly growing across the US. Initially launched as a high-performance unit within Volvo, Polestar’s vehicles are as thoughtful as they are beautiful; not just the design of the surface details, but the sustainable technology that liv…
 
Sasha Rush is an Associate Professor at Cornell Tech and researcher at Hugging Face. His research focuses on building NLP systems that are safe, fast, and controllable.Sasha's PhD thesis is titled, "Lagrangian Relaxation for Natural Language Decoding", which he completed in 2014 at MIT.We talk about his work in the thesis on decoding in NLP, how it…
 
Michael R. Douglas is a theoretical physicist and Professor at Stony Brook University, and Visiting Scholar at Harvard University. His research focuses on string theory, theoretical physics and its relations to mathematics.Michael's PhD thesis is titled, "G/H Conformal Field Theory", which he completed in 1988 at Caltech.We talk about working with …
 
Andre Martins is an Associate Professor at IST and VP of AI Research at Unbabel in Lisbon, Portugal. His research focuses on natural language processing and machine learning.Andre’s PhD thesis is titled, "The Geometry of Constrained Structured Prediction: Applications to Inference and Learning of Natural Language Syntax", which he completed in 2012…
 
Jay McClelland is a Professor in the Psychology Department and Director of the Center for Mind, Brain, Computation and Technology at Stanford. His research addresses a broad range of topics in cognitive science and cognitive neuroscience, including Parallel Distributed Processing (PDP).Jay's PhD thesis is titled "Preliminary Letter Identification i…
 
Dustin Tran is a research scientist at Google Brain. His research focuses on advancing science and intelligence, including areas involving probability, programs, and neural networks.Dustin’s PhD thesis is titled "Probabilistic Programming for Deep Learning", which he completed in 2020 at Columbia University.We discuss the intersection of probabilis…
 
Tengyu Ma is an Assistant Professor at Stanford University. His research focuses on deep learning and its theory, as well as various topics in machine learning.Tengyu's PhD thesis is titled "Non-convex Optimization for Machine Learning: Design, Analysis, and Understanding", which he completed in 2017 at Princeton University.We discuss theory in mac…
 
Karen Ullrich is a Research Scientist at FAIR. Her research focuses on the intersection of information theory and probabilistic machine learning and deep learning.Karen's PhD thesis is titled "A coding perspective on deep latent variable models", which she completed in 2020 at The University of Amsterdam.We discuss information theory & the minimum …
 
Danqi Chen is an assistant professor at Princeton University, co-leading the Princeton NLP Group. Her research focuses on fundamental methods for learning representations of language and knowledge, and practical systems including question answering, information extraction and conversational agents.Danqi’s PhD thesis is titled "Neural Reading Compre…
 
Figma has transformed the silo’d world of design into a collaborative, multiplayer game. Dylan Field, CEO and Co-Founder of Figma, shares his journey building the product and how he dropped out of college and ultimately scaled Figma to a $2B valuation. At YML, we use Figma across all disciplines for the end to end experience — not just design. It’s…
 
Kevin Ellis is an assistant professor at Cornell and currently a research scientist at Common Sense Machines. His research focuses on artificial intelligence, program synthesis, and neurosymbolic models.Kevin's PhD thesis is titled "Algorithms for Learning to Induce Programs", which he completed in 2020 at MIT. We discuss Kevin’s work at the inters…
 
Tomas Mikolov is a Senior Researcher at the Czech Institute of Informatics, Robotics, and Cybernetics. His research has covered topics in natural language understanding and representation learning, including Word2Vec, and complexity.Tomas's PhD thesis is titles "Statistical Language Models Based on Neural Networks", which he completed in 2012 at th…
 
Assaf Wand knew how broken the home insurance market was: an industry more interested in covering antiquated items like gold bullion and mausoleums rather than the electronics and home office equipment you need to get through your day. So Wand went to work, unafraid of the insurance world’s red tape, rules and regulations, and launched Hippo. Desig…
 
Martin Arjovsky is a postdoctoral researcher at INRIA. His research focuses on generative modeling, generalization, and exploration in RL. Martin's PhD thesis is titled "Out of Distribution Generalization in Machine Learning", which he completed in 2019 at New York University. We discuss his work on the influential Wasserstein GAN early in his PhD,…
 
How do you build an investment community of 1M members, valued at $1.2B, in just 18 months during a pandemic? Leif Abraham, Co-CEO of Public.com, has an answer — and a vision. Launched in 2019, Public.com is both a social media platform and an investing app designed to make the stock market accessible for a new generation of investors. In this epis…
 
Simon Shaolei Du is an Assistant Professor at the University of Washington. His research focuses on theoretical foundations of deep learning, representation learning, and reinforcement learning.Simon's PhD thesis is titled "Gradient Descent for Non-convex Problems in Modern Machine Learning", which he completed in 2019 at Carnegie Mellon University…
 
Graham Neubig is an Associate Professor at Carnegie Mellon University. His research focuses on language and its role in human communication, with the goal of breaking down barriers in human-human or human-machine communication through the development of NLP technologies.Graham’s PhD thesis is titled "Unsupervised Learning of Lexical Information for…
 
Michela Paganini is a Research Scientist at DeepMind. Her research focuses on investigating ways to compress and scale up neural networks.Michela's PhD thesis is titled "Machine Learning Solutions for High Energy Physics", which she completed in 2019 at Yale University. We discuss her PhD work on deep learning for high energy physics, including jet…
 
Why do you end up where you’re at? That question fascinates Rene Lacerte, the CEO and founder of Bill.com, the fintech platform currently valued at $10 billion. As a fourth generation entrepreneur, building is literally in his blood. But the journey is his own—his trek through various failures and triumphs has shaped his point of view on the world.…
 
Josef Urban is a Principal Researcher at the Czech Institute of Informatics, Robotics, and Cybernetics. His research focuses on artificial intelligence for large-scale computer-assisted reasoning.Josef's PhD thesis is titled "Exploring and Combining Deductive and Inductive Reasoning in Large Libraries of Formalized Mathematics", which he completed …
 
Dumitru Erhan is a Research Scientist at Google Brain. His research focuses on understanding the world with neural networks.Dumitru's PhD thesis is titled "Understanding Deep Architectures and the Effect of Unsupervised Pretraining", which he completed in 2010 at the University of Montreal. We discuss his work in the thesis on understanding deep ne…
 
Pete Flint was the CEO and co-founder of Trulia, a service that prioritizes homebuyers and sellers and not real estate agents. He grew Trulia to over 50 million users, culminating in an IPO and merger with Zillow for $3.5 billion. Today, Flint is a general partner at NFX, an entrepreneur-driven seed fun that’s supported some of the most notable nam…
 
Eero Simoncelli is a Professor of Neural Science, Mathematics, Data Science, and Psychology at New York University. His research focuses on representation and analysis of visual information.Eero's PhD thesis is titled "Distributed Representation & Analysis of Visual Motion", which he completed in 1993 at MIT. We discuss his PhD work which focused o…
 
Paul Middlebrooks is a neuroscientist and host of the Brain Inspired podcast, which explores the intersection of neuroscience and artificial intelligence.Paul's PhD thesis is titled "Neuronal Correlates of Meta-Cognition in Primate Frontal Cortex", which he completed at the University of Pittsburgh in 2011. We discuss Paul's work on meta-cognition …
 
Tim Chen is the CEO and founder of NerdWallet, a service that un-clutters the world of money and helps people make smart financial decisions. He’s also one of the most humble and prudent founders in Silicon Valley. In this opening episode, Tim and Ashish discuss Tim’s evolution from unhappily working at a hedge fund to launching and scaling NerdWal…
 
Aaron Courville is a Professor at the University of Montreal. His research focuses on the development of deep learning models and methods.Aaron's PhD thesis is titled "A Latent Cause Theory of Classical Conditioning", which he completed at Carnegie Mellon University in 2006. We discuss Aaron's work on the latent cause theory during his PhD, talk ab…
 
Christian Szegedy is a Research Scientist at Google. His research machine learning methods such as the inception architecture, batch normalization and adversarial examples, and he currently investigates machine learning for mathematical reasoning.Christian’s PhD thesis is titled "Some Applications of the Weighted Combinatorial Laplacian" which he c…
 
Been Kim is a Research Scientist at Google Brain. Her research focuses on designing high-performance machine learning methods that make sense to humans.Been's PhD thesis is titled "Interactive and Interpretable Machine Learning Models for Human Machine Collaboration", which she completed in 2015 at MIT. We discuss her work on interpretability, incl…
 
Adji Bousso Dieng is currently a Research Scientist at Google AI, and will be starting as an assistant professor at Princeton University in 2021. Her research focuses on combining probabilistic graphical modeling and deep learning to design models for structured high-dimensional data.Her PhD thesis is titled "Deep Probabilistic Graphical Modeling",…
 
Martha White is an Associate Professor at the University of Alberta. Her research focuses on developing reinforcement learning and representation learning techniques for adaptive, autonomous agents learning on streams of data.Her PhD thesis is titled "Regularized Factor Models", which she completed in 2014 at the University of Alberta. We discuss t…
 
Jacob Andreas is an Assistant Professor at MIT, where he leads the language and intelligence group, focusing on language as a communicative and computational tool.His PhD thesis is titled "Learning from Language" which he completed in 2018 at UC Berkeley. We discuss compositionality and neural module networks, the intersection of RL and language, a…
 
Chelsea Finn is an Assistant Professor at Stanford University, where she leads the IRIS lab that studies intelligence through robotic interaction at scale.Her PhD thesis is titled "Learning to Learn with Gradients", which she completed in 2018 at UC Berkeley. Chelsea received the prestigious ACM Doctoral Dissertation Award for her work in the thesi…
 
Kenneth Stanley is a researcher at OpenAI, where he leads the team on Open-endedness. Previously he was a Professor Computer Science at the University of Central Florida, cofounder of Geometric Intelligence, and head of Core AI research at Uber AI labs.His PhD thesis is titled "Efficient Evolution of Neural Networks through Complexification", which…
 
He He is an Assistant Professor at New York University. Her research focuses on enabling reliable communication in natural language between machine and humans, including topics in text generation, robust language understanding, and dialogue systems.Her PhD thesis is titled "Sequential Decisions and Predictions in NLP", which she completed in 2016 a…
 
John Schulman is a Research Scientist and co-founder of Open AI. John co-leads the reinforcement learning team, researching algorithms that safely and efficiently learn by trial and error and by imitating humans.His PhD thesis is titled "Optimizing Expectations: From Deep Reinforcement Learning to Stochastic Computation Graphs", which he completed …
 
Yoon Kim is currently a Research Scientist at the MIT-IBM AI Watson Lab, and will be joining MIT as an assistant professor in 2021.Yoon’s research focuses on machine learning and natural language processing. His PhD thesis is titled "Deep Latent Variable Models of Natural Language", which he completed in 2020 at Harvard University. We discuss his w…
 
Julian Togelius is an Associate Professor at New York University, where he co-directs the NYU Game Innovation Lab. His research is at the intersection of computational intelligence and computer games.His PhD thesis is titled "Optimization, Imitation, and Innovation: Computational Intelligence and Games", which he completed in 2007. We cover his wor…
 
Sebastian Nowozin is currently a Researcher at Microsoft Research Cambridge. His research focuses on probabilistic deep learning, consequences of model misspecification, understanding agent complexity in order to improve learning efficiency, and designing models for reasoning and planning.His PhD thesis is titled "Learning with Structured Data: App…
 
Sebastian Ruder is currently a Research Scientist at Deepmind. His research focuses on transfer learning for natural language processing, and making machine learning and NLP more accessible. His PhD thesis is titled "Neural Transfer Learning for Natural Language Processing", which he completed in 2019. We cover transfer learning from philosophical …
 
Colin Raffel is currently a Senior Research Scientist at Google Brain, and soon to be an assistant professor at the University of North Carolina. His recent work focuses on transfer learning and learning from limited labels. His thesis is titled "Learning-Based Methods for Comparing Sequences, with Applications to Audio-to-MIDI Alignment and Matchi…
 
Gus Xia is an assistant professor at New York University Shanghai. His research explores machine learning for music, with a goal of building intelligent systems that understand and extend musical creativity and expression.His PhD thesis is titled Expressive Collaborative Music Performance via Machine Learning, which we discuss in depth along with h…
 
Subscribe to the podcast here: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/working-jobs-radio/id957860809?mt=2I actually had dinner with today's guest, Bing Chen, just before I left my last job, and it couldn't have been a more timely experience. He's one of the most passionate, mission driven people I know. Despite being a Forbes 30 under 30 and founder o…
 
Subscribe to the podcast here: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/working-jobs-radio/id957860809?mt=2In addition to being a savvy marketer, Alan is an adventurer who has made some tough decisions about his career: quitting a job he loved that took him to fifty different countries to join a marketing company in Boston to leaving that company he lov…
 
In part two with Sasha Sherman, we'll talk about applying what you learn in school and entrepreneurship. a.To learn more about Sasha, check him out on LinkedIn or at the Bold Organics website www.bold-organics.comTo learn more about Tony, go to www.tonysheng.com or find him on twitter @tonysheng.Subscribe to the podcast here: itunes.apple.com/us/po…
 
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