This week I sat down and completed the draft of the week 15 edition of The Lindahl Letter. That one is titled, “What are people really doing with machine learning?” The draft is now complete for publication on Friday May 7, 2021 at 17:00 hours Denver time. You may have guessed that today it seemed like a good idea for me to finish up that draft instead of starting my day with this ongoing writing project to produce a page of prose each and every morning. That is how my day started and it turned out well enough. I’m pretty sure the upcoming missives are going to be a little shorter for a bit until I have time to catch up and work ahead of my weekly delivery schedule. Right now I have a list of topics that pushes things out to week 37 and some of them are better than others.
Yesterday or at some point recently, I lost a YouTube subscriber. It was probably my latest guitar video that displeased them and they left by taking the time to click unsubscribe. My general interests are technology and guitars. Certainly that is driven by my interest in the intersection of technology and modernity. Within that space I enjoy learning about civil society, the public square, artificial intelligence, machine learning, and all things technology related. Outside of that general space I tend to watch videos about guitar pedals and technology. While the two topics are slightly related most people may not share my interest in a mixture of such things. I’m not really worried at all about growing my audience. For the most part the videos that I create and the articles that I write are for my own purposes. They formally help me refine my thoughts and engage in the practice of doing things. Writing dense long misses of prose every day on a weblog is probably not the best method of communication to grow an audience. Some people have found success on Substack writing and sending out newsletters. That is probably directly related to finding a shared community of interest that wants to learn more and engage. Communities of place, circumstance, and interest develop naturally and the ones based on interest are probably the most passionate fan bases for a newsletter.
The other day I was wondering what the actual audience size was for people who are interested in technical track applied machine learning content. My estimate of that audience size is about 10,000 people worldwide that might be actually interested in that topic. At any given time for any given publication a much smaller portion of that base would actually engage and consume that content. We have reached a point in the process of learning about machine learning where the creation of related content outpaces the ability of the community to consume it. That creates islands of specialization and all of the challenges and oddities that are produced from microcosms.