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How To Raise Your Kids To Succeed In A High-Tech World

I have a toddler. How should she prepare herself for the job market 15 years from now in the world of AI?originally appeared on Quorathe place to gain and share knowledge, empowering people to learn from others and better understand the world.

Answer by Andrew Ng, Co-founder of Coursera; Adjunct Professor at Stanford, on Quora:

Yes, do teach your toddler to code. More importantly, cultivate in her the ability to keep learning.

In the computer science world, all of us are used to needing to jump every ~5 years onto new technologies and paradigms of thinking (internet->cloud->mobile->AI/machine learning), because new technologies get invented at that pace that obsolete parts of what we were previously doing. So CS people are used to learning new things all the time.

 The thing that’s now changed is that CS has infected pretty much every other industry. So now it’s not just the CS world that has to change every few years. It’s that everyone now needs to change. That’s why being able to keep learning will be the most important career skill you can teach your daughter.

I also think (almost) everyone should learn to code. Once upon a time, we wondered if everyone needed to be able to read/write. Perhaps we could just have a few literate monks recite text to us, and most of humanity did not need to read/write? Or perhaps we just needed a small number of people to write best-selling books, and no one else needed to be able to write? What we found was that with rising literacy, human-to-human communications became much better: rather than only having a small group write best sellers, we can also have emails written just for an audience of one, and this too is valuable.

 Today we’re in an era where so few people can code that a lot of code is written for mass audiences. But if everyone can code, perhaps the mom-and-pop owner of a corner store can write a few lines of code to customize their LCD display for this week’s promotional sale; or perhaps a husband can write a simple app whose only audience will be his wife, much like he might today send an email whose only audience is his wife.

Widespread literacy has transformed human-to-human communication. Now, human-to-machine communication is becoming really important as well, and the ability to code will be the basis for the deepest human-to-machine communication for the forseeable future. So I don’t agree with those who think the world needs only a few million programmers; I think almost everyone should learn to code in the same way that almost everyone should learn to read/write.

This question originally appeared on Quora – the place to gain and share knowledge, empowering people to learn from others and better understand the world. You can follow Quora on TwitterFacebook, and Google+.

Source: forbes

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