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What is Machine Learning?

Within data science, there are many complex subjects including machine learning – a concept difficult to understand if you aren’t involved in this field., so we thought it would be useful to give you information about it.

Machine learning (ML) is a subset of artificial intelligence (AI) that adopt AI to authorise the automatic and continuous learning parameters of systems, allowing them to build upon previous experiences without being developed. ML revolves around the development of computer programmes that have the capacity to utilise data and process it to educate themselves.

The learning process begins with the programmes’ instruction to look for trends in data in order to make better decisions in the future. The purpose of this process is to allow the machines to develop themselves continuously, without any human intervention and adapt in whatever way they need to.

There are various forms of machine learning, either supervised or unsupervised.

  • Supervised machine learning algorithms utilise previous methods with new data sets, using specific examples to predict future events. It can provide a function and make predictions about the following values. Once the programmes have undergone extensive training, they will be able to produce targets for any new data that is provided. By comparing its own wrong result with the desired, correct data, the system can spot the errors and change the model in whatever way is needed.
  • Unsupervised machine learning algorithms are utilised when the functions that are used to programme the computers are not decrypted. Unsupervised learning is centred around how systems can produce a specific function to describe an unknown structure from data that has not been shown. It can’t find the correct output, but it can explore the specific data and provide interferences from sets of data to explore these hidden structures.

Between these two solutions, there is semi-supervised machine learning. It uses both labelled and unlabeled data for development (often a low amount of labelled and a high amount of unlabelled). The programmes that utilise this method usually have the aim to further learning accuracy and choose the methodology when the acquired labelled data requires complex resources to train or learn from it.

Reinforcement of machine learning algorithms provide functions, showing their errors and rewards in a ‘trial and error’ type way. This particular method gives machines and software agents the chance to find the preferred behaviour, in order to maximise its internal performance. The reward feedback system is a useful way for computers to learn which is the most preferable action, known as the reinforcement signal.

Machine learning creates the possibility to analyse a huge quantity of data, efficiently. Once it is developed properly, it can be used effectively to identify opportunities or highlight certain risks, making the combination of AI and cognitive technologies an effective method for humans to use in the processing of large volumes of information.

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