The official @sgugger appreciation thread

I realized that I had far too much to say about how awesome @sgugger (aka Sylvain Gugger) is that I couldn’t possibly fit it all in today’s lesson, so instead I’ve decided to created a whole thread that is entirely focused on this important topic. :slight_smile:

Sylvain is, to this day, the only person I have ever offered the opportunity to work full-time with His wonderful writing and research made me quite confident that I should make that offer. I’m so glad I did, and that he accepted. There’s no way we would be where we are today if it wasn’t for him. His ability to understand complex concepts and distill them down to their essence is remarkable, and he’s got an amazing ability to ask just the right questions at just the right time. If he asks me “are you sure about that?” then I always think carefully, because there’s a very good chance he’s noticed something that I missed.

Also… I’m a total pain in the ass to work with. I’m never satisfied, and care far too much about details which most people would consider trivial. Even when something is working pretty well, I’m always asking “how can it be much much better?” Sylvain doesn’t just put up with me, but deeply engages with these questions, and invariably he does figure out ways to make it much much better. In the end, we’ve ended up with many things in the course, the library, and our research that are now genuinely world-class as a result.

We’re particularly blessed because I’m quite sure Sylvain could take his pick of any job he wants, at whatever salary he demanded. The fact that he’s working for our little research lab is amazing. (And special thanks to AWS and USF Data Institute for helping to make that happen.)

Also… he’s funny, thoughtful, and generous. Working on opposite sides of the country seemed like something that might be complex and stressful - but it absolutely never is with Sylvain. Thanks to his great communication and patience, he makes it work really really well.

Anyway, if he’s helped you, feel free to let him know here.

(Having said that, I don’t want him to get a big head, so feel free to also mention something that will help avoid ego inflation. I’ll start: Sylvain’s attempts to pronounce the word “anchor” are absolutely incompetent, no matter how hard he tries. I strongly suspect that this is a skill that is far beyond his talents. So if you ever hear him say “encore” - I assure you he’s almost certainly saying “anchor”.)


I would like to greatly thank Sylvain for all his answers in the lesson threads of this course. He’s been awesome at quickly providing thoughtful and precise answers to any question we could have.
I also love the fastai librairy and the documentation, so thanks a lot for contributing to that !

(and as a fellow french person, I wholeheartedly understand and support him in struggling to pronounce the word “anchor”)


Sylvain is truly amazing!

So much love and care!

Thank you for making this appreciation thread for Sylvain, Jeremy!

And thank you, Sylvain!


Thanks Sylvain for all you are doing.

Maybe over time you will grow to appreciate cats more.

When you have a moment, could you ask Jeremy to say “serrurerie”?


I can personally vouch for how sharp and on top of things Sylvain is. And he works hard! I’m super impressed from over here in San Diego- the last two weeks working with you guys has been like a dream.


selfdriven, hardworking and a fast learner with communication skills. Thanks Sylvain for putting your engagement in the fastai project

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Despite all the truly amazing work here in, Sylvain have an amazing patience to engage and even reply a lot of lazy questions asked here.

He is everywhere.

Pretty much all the time when I’m stuck with some error I search around here in the forums and he either answered the question or pointed out a silly mistake and prevented me from asking a stupid question.

Thanks Sylvain.

Live long and prosper!


When we were in Montreal he tried to get me to say lots of silly words.


Thx Sylvain for your patience, hope I can learn more from you, amazing work. :slight_smile:


Thank you Sylvain for giving me the courage and support to contribute to the fastai library, I am truly grateful for all the work that you do. Words cant describe how excited I was to get the email that you accepted my first (and second) PR. I will never forget it!

Cheers :beers:
The same goes for Jeremy as well!


You are the man👍


Yes thanks @sgugger for all your work (and yes, I just @'d you intentionally). You’re making fastai a legit option for real world, production and have always been very responsive to my PRs.

The only negative I can think of… is that you like cats. Would be nice to see a bit more dogs in part 2 along with a backwards pretrained LM model that I’ve been hounding for since lesson 3 :blush:.


I think this is a wonderful post, giving and sharing tribute where it is deserved.

I allowed myself to post a copy/paste on the KaggleNoobs slack, indicating this is still a private section of the forums.


Also he’s French…


Thanks Sylvain - you have been amazingly helpful to me - and the forums show that this is multiplied very many times!

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Thanks @sgugger for all your help and work – sometimes hard to fathom how you are able to review all the PRs, always be available on the forum to answer Qs, AND write code to progress the library and the research!


Thank You Sylvain, for keeping up with my silly questions now and then and always patiently answering them.

Thank you Sylvain for all your hard work and being so awesome and patient with everyone’s PR’s and silly questions (mine included)!


Thanks @sgugger . It was a pleasure meeting you in person in NYC.

Two more things you might not know about him:

  1. Sylvain balked at being in the center of the photo, but we insisted.
  2. Sylvain claims he can eat an entire pizza, but that is unconfirmed as of today.

Room for improvement:

  • speak louder! we want to hear you what you have to say :slight_smile: