Machine Learning: A Beginner’s Guide

Machine learning is a field of computer science that has been gaining popularity in the last few years.  It’s is a branch of Artificial Intelligence (AI) that uses algorithms to learn from data without having explicit instructions on how to do so as traditional programming does. Machine Learning provides systems the ability to automatically identify patterns between input data and output. This article will cover what machine learning is, some examples of it being used, and how you can get started on your own project.

What is Machine Learning

Machine learning is a kind of computer information. It can learn from examples and get better at what it does. This is different from traditional computer programming where you have to explicitly tell the computer what to do.

Machine learning has been used in many fields including:

  • Autonomous vehicles
  • Fraud detection
  • Speech recognition and synthesis
  • Predicting consumer behavior

There are many different types of machine learning algorithms. Some popular ones are:

  • Supervised learning
  • Unsupervised learning
  • Reinforcement learning

Machine learning algorithms are constantly evolving. The current state of the art is a result of many years of research and development in both academia and industry.

Unsupervised Machine Learning

Unsupervised machine learning is a kind of computer information that can learn from examples. It doesn’t need someone to tell it what to do like traditional computer programming.

Unsupervised machine learning is used in many fields including:

  • Fraud detection
  • Speech recognition and synthesis
  • Predicting consumer behavior

Some unsupervised machine learning problems are:

  • Classification and clustering problem: the goal is to assign a set of observations into predefined classes. These systems learn from examples, analyze them using classification rules or models that divide data based on similar characteristics. The most common example would be spam filters in the email
  • Dimensionality reduction algorithms: this technique is used when we have too many variables that are correlated. These algorithms reduce the dimensionality of incoming data to a more manageable form
  • Deep learning algorithms: these algorithms can learn from a large amount of input data. They are used for: Object recognition in images and videos, speech synthesis, object detection, and more.

Supervised Machine Learning

Supervised machine learning is a type of computer information that can learn from examples. It needs someone to tell it what to do like traditional computer programming.  Supervised learning is often seen as a part of machine learning. The supervised algorithm can learn from experience, or through the use of feedback and data to improve performance. It is used when you have a set of training data, which the algorithm can use to learn and make predictions or decisions.

Once the training data is known, it can be used to measure accuracy. Supervised learning algorithms are not always a better solution than unsupervised or reinforcement learning algorithms, but they are easier to understand and can be more reliable.

Reinforcement Machine Learning

Reinforcement machine learning is when you give the computer a reward if it does the right thing. It is an incredibly powerful technique and has been used in games to beat the best humans at Go. However it is hard to get right as you need to be able to reward the right thing at all times, and it is known that finicky reinforcement can cause problems. The most famous example of this is the AI agent AlphaGo, which was taught to play Go by being rewarded for placing stones on the board in such a way that led to it winning the game. However, it was later found that if AlphaGo played against itself, its own moves would often be worse than if a human player had made them. This was because the system would sometimes focus on winning quickly, which lead it to make moves that were not very good in context.


We hope this article has helped you understand some of the fundamentals behind machine learning. By understanding how machines think, we can help them to make better decisions and solve complex problems that humans cannot. There is so much more to learn, which is why we are here with articles on the latest innovations in data science and artificial intelligence.

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