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Blog 9: Optimal Stopping

As you pursue research related to your final project, you may wonder: how much time should I spend researching before I stop with the best things I have found? Well, there's an answer, and it's based on computer science. According to Brian Christian, it can be shown mathematically that you should spend a certain amount of time just looking for things before you should stop looking and start writing. For Thursday, October 27, read this article and write a blog post where you do the following:

  • Explain in your own words how optimal stopping works.
  • Identify three things in the essay that you find either confusing or interesting, and why (we will discuss what you identify in class).
  • Describe a situation (other than your final project for this course) where you either used a method like optimal stopping to find something important or you should have used the method because you waited too long or not long enough.