Guidelines for Peer Groups

The Goal

The goal of this Patreon program is to form community around the small peer groups exploring managerial issues of analytical systems enabled by Deep Learning (DL), meeting regularly and guided by a group mentor.

…now that’s a mouth-full! Let’s unpack each of the highlighted terms, starting with the easiest.

Peer — Group  members are peer professionals, possessing similar experiences and  facing similar challenges in the context of analytical systems. The  success of peer groups depends on achieving mutual respect and trust  among all members.

Small –5–7 persons, where everyone has ample opportunity to contribute in all discussions. You can’t hide in the back row!

Regularly — Initially twice per month, like first and third Mondays at xx:xx UTC. Later, the group can choose their own frequency.

Group Mentor — …is  NOT the instructor! Like doctorial research seminar, where everyone is  the teacher. The mentor role is to guide, both the group and  individuals, toward a clear understanding and practical application of  DL. Success is when the mentor is no longer required by the group.

Managerial  –Ultimately all discussions center on the how/why of creating and  maintaining value for the organization. Technology (of any kind) and its  application are merely one avenue for achieving that value. It will  feel like an MBA case class!

Analytical Systems — Systems  that generalizes beyond known data about a complex system, the purpose  of which is the create models or patterns of the system dynamics and  causal flows, the purpose of which is the understand and manage the  system toward desired goals.

Deep Learning (DL) — A  versatile technology with the potential to enable analytical systems to  exceed human-level performance (HLP) for specific intelligence tasks,  for which there are sufficient examples of good/bad behavior. With DL…  We humans have created tools smart enough to out-smart ourselves!

Community — The  peer groups are a temporary bridge toward increasing community among  DL-knowledgeable professionals who are concerned about the proper and  ethical application of this new technology. The hope is to create  lasting relationships among participants within and among the peer  groups.

Success Factors

 The success factors for achieving this goal are:

  • Managers  who sense a critical need to explore the unique issues of Deep Learning  as it applies to specific situations within their companies. And, they  are willing to allot time and effort to pursue this exploration.  Further, they are willing to share (non-confidential) experiences and  current challenges in discussions with the group.
  • A  group mentor whose goal is to guide and assist, not lead or teach,  knowing when to ‘get-out-of-the-way’. The success of this mentoring is  when this role is no longer required by the group.
  • Diversity  of perspectives across organizations, functional areas, industries, and  cultures, along with the openness to ponder the ethical and social  issues present.

Confidentiality of Discussions

Any  business application enabled by DL is a sensitive topic within  corporations. The group discussions will involve these sensitive topics,  among persons from different companies and backgrounds. Hence, we must  respect the confidentiality of the discussion, with the following  guidelines:

Sterilize it! Avoid  discussing any information that could be considered confidential or  sensitive. Instead sterilize it by keeping it generic. Generalize the  situation, omitting extra details.

What is said within the group stays within the group. …no  exceptions for sensitive topics, unless permission is grant by the  group. However, most discussions will be of a generic nature, applicable  to any situations. Persons are encouraged to share generic information  with their colleagues outside the group. Obviously, there may often be a  fine line between confidential and generic. Therefore, always ask if in  doubt.

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