"Good Mrs. Abigail said of me, That I had a splatter Face, like an over grown School-boy."
Sunday, May 11, 2008
The Statistical Mechanics of Teaching
The physics preprint archive (arXiv.org) attempts to quarantine goofy/crackpot papers in sections like "Physics and Society." This new paper about online learning is typical of the genre. It models a student (a "perceptron") as learning infinitesimally slowly from infinitely many teachers, and uses the central limit theorem to "prove" various claims about how online learning works.
From the introduction:
"Using the same method, we also analyzed the generalized performance of a student supervised by a moving teacher that goes around a true teacher."