Interviewing for Google AI Residency: AMA (Sanyam Bhutani)

Hi Everyone,

Earlier, this year I had the chance to make it to the final round of interviews for the Google AI Residency!

This was nothing short of a dream come true moment for me. Personally, I had really looked upto all of the great things that our peers have been doing and I really thought it was my moment to make my Gurus proud.

Unfortunately, I did not make it to the program however, even getting shortlisted for the interview was really all thanks to fastai and the community.

I want to host this AMA here hoping to help someone from the fastai family get into the program next year!

PS: The interview questions are under NDA so I can’t talk about those. However, I’m most happy to discuss how I prepared for these and how I study Deep Learning in general.

Also before ending this post here, as I’ve mentioned in the blog post linked above, all of my knowledge and (tiny) successes in this great field have been all thanks to fastai (course + community), so I really wanted to take a moment to thank the team for creating this! About myself, I come from a beautiful town in India (Dehradun) that sadly isn’t a world leader in terms of cutting edge tech.

Yet, I have been able to learn so much from the fastai family (as @alexandrecc calls the community). I’m really grateful to Jeremy, Rachel and Sylvain (whom I had even the chance to meet in person and really thank him for all the amazing stuff; thanks to Google for flying me out to NYC).
Dear fastai Family, Thank you for everything!

Also apologies for not being able to contribute to the community during these months, I was really giving the interview preparation my all energy and concentration. I assure you, I will spend the next months contribute with my full energy.

Best Regards,
Sanyam Bhutani.


Congratulations, Sanyam! Look forward to hearing about how you prepared for the interview. Also, it would be cool if you could share what you think made you skip the preliminary screening. Thank you!

Thank you jswong!
I followed the section from the AI Residency website, the resources I used are mentioned in the OP linked above.

About skipping the round, not sure. It’s supposed to be a “pre-screening” round before the on-site. I think Google might have decided to skip the same for me. However, I’m not sure of the reason. I was reading on reddit and many other people had the rounds skipped for them as well.


Hello Sanyam,
I am also from india and i recently came across this course and started doing it. It is my dream to get into Google AI residency. Can you guide me when can i apply for it and what are the steps.

Hey Sanyam,

How did you find Data Structures and Algorithms in Python book? Is It a good book?

@rohit You can find the links via a simple search.
This is the website. I’d also encourage you to apply for all other Residency programs. Good luck! :slight_smile:

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@Imad It’s a great book for its purpose and does justice to it. In hindsight, I would have benifitted more by doing coding practise on competitions (Hackathons,etc).

That also might be since I’m a CS Student so I’m very familiar with DS.

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Thanks @init_27. Yeah I have never taken a formal course in Data Structures and I am planning to learn invest in learning such an important topic. I’ll look around for good resources online.


First of all Congratulations. Getting the interview from Google as (I assume) a self taught Deep Learning practitioner, is a feat in and of itself. So Good for you!

I wanted to ask you how you studied DL. Like did you take any other courses or read some books?And would you recommend them?

Also what did you focus more of your time on? Did you focus more on the theory and the math behind the algorithms or went for a more practical side of things?


Hi Sanyam,

Thank you for sharing your experience! I wanted to ask if you came across some machine learning coding exercises during your interviews for the residency program? I have an interview coming up with Uber AI residency and I was told there will be a machine learning coding exercise. I have little idea of how to prepare for this kind of exercice and wanted to ask if someone experienced such interviews.

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Hi @feiwu!

This is amazing! Best wishes for the residency interviews, although if you’re already on the forums-you’d be doing great :smiley:

Yes, there was one round of ML Coding and 1 of DS-not sure how much is under NDA.

I’d recommend checking out the resources by Chip Huyen on here website and the (although very high level, but golden) advice on my interview series:

Good Luck!


Thank you very much! I’ll check into the resources :slight_smile:

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