**Justin Skycak**(pr: Sky-zack)

Chief Quant, Director of Analytics at mathacademy.com. Instead of optimizing return in the stock market, I optimize learning efficiency in students' brains. I do all our AI, science, & algo-heavy infra and am obsessed with hierarchical skill acquisition.

X/Twitter • LinkedIn • HackerNews • StackExchange • Reddit • Blog • Misc

More specifically: I develop all the quantitative software behind mathacademy.com, an online math learning platform that is hyper-efficient, individualized, adaptive, and fully automated. This includes building our entire AI system from scratch (as well as all the science-y stuff, knowledge graph management infrastructure, and any algorithmically complicated back-end infrastructure in general).- I loved self-studying math and applying it to research projects while growing up. But I hated how ineffective, inefficient, and inconvenient most formal math classes were. And today more than ever, with falling standards, extreme grade inflation, and the proliferation of unscientific pedagogical philosophies, the state of math education is an ever-expanding train wreck.
- At the same time, math education is also the launchpad for the greatest educational life hack: learning advanced math (and coding) rigorously at a young age and benefitting wildly from the resulting skills and opportunities. This life hack can rocket students into some of the most interesting, meaningful, and lucrative careers -- yet it remains unknown to most students who have the potential and willingness to capitalize on it.
- My goal is to steer hard-working quantitatively-inclined students away from the train wreck and onto the rocket ship, at scale. The rocket ship is mathacademy.com.
- You know the AP Calculus BC exam that honors 12th graders take to try to earn credit for two semesters of college calculus? Math Academy got numerous students passing that by 8th grade and studying the equivalent of a full college math major in 9th-12th grade -- America's most accelerated math program. Then the 2020 pandemic hit and we built an AI system to run our classes: automatically determining what a student knows and is ready to learn, selecting personalized learning tasks, teaching new material, reviewing and quizzing previous material, leveraging over a century of research to maximize learning efficiency every step of the way. In all measurable learning outcomes, including AP scores, our system turned out to be far superior to manual teaching. Math Academy's online learning system is the most efficient and effective way to learn math. more

**Previously:**Physics research ➔ data science ➔ math/CS education ➔ Math Academy. Degrees in math and [the mathy side of] computer science. LinkedIn

- Improved data transmission within Fermilab and CERN particle detectors; finalist in the 2013 International Science & Engineering Fair. more
- Full-ride academic scholarship (Lilly Scholarship) to the University of Notre Dame; spent a summer in Los Alamos working on a LANL computational neuroscience project and then 2 years working full-time as a data scientist at Aunalytics while simultaneously an undergraduate. Master's in Computer Science (Machine Learning) from Georgia Tech. more
- Tutored 300+ students from 2013-20 and developed what was, during its operation from 2020-23, the most advanced high school math/CS sequence in the USA. It culminated in high school students doing masters/PhD-level coursework (reproducing academic research papers in artificial intelligence, building everything from scratch in Python). more
- Solved every problem that Math Academy has faced while constructing an educational knowledge graph for all of 4th grade through university-level mathematics and building a fully automated, fully adaptive learning system around it. This includes building our entire AI system from scratch, including formalizing a novel theory of maximum-efficiency spaced repetition in hierarchical knowledge structures. more

**Hobbies:**Calisthenics. (Previously: math, music, tutoring, hockey.)

- Self-studied most of undergraduate math during high school; self-published several math textbooks (over 1000 pages total) shortly after college. more
- Achieved an extreme physique transformation from 2021-23 using only calisthenics; continued training advanced calisthenics including various moves on the gymnastic rings. more