All That You Need To Know About Machine Learning

Machine Learning is an area of Artificial Intelligence that deals with algorithms that allow machines to learn from data and experience.

It is a set of algorithms and methods used to detect patterns in data and build predictive models so that machines can learn to make decisions without being explicitly programmed.

With Machine Learning, machines can learn from large amounts of data and make predictions by recognising patterns in the data.

Machines are then able to modify their behaviour and provide better results each time, thus becoming more accurate and efficient.

Machine Learning also enables machines to create improved models and to respond quickly to new data sets and changes in the environment.

Machine Learning can be used for a wide range of applications, from accurately predicting customer behavior to image and speech recognition, playing games, and more.

Applications of Machine Learning

Machine learning has a wide range of uses –

Image Detection: Machine learning algorithms are widely used in applications such as face recognition, object detection, etc.

Speech Recognition: Speech recognition systems are also based on machine learning algorithms which can analyse audio signals and recognise spoken words.

Chatbots: Machine learning techniques are used to develop smart chatbots that understand natural language and can engage in meaningful conversations.

Medical Diagnosis: Algorithms that can help doctors make better diagnosis based on patient’s data can come from machine learning.

Predictive Maintenance: Predictive maintenance uses machine learning algorithms to detect potential problems in a system quickly and avoid major disruptions.

Media Recommendation: Applications like Netflix and Spotify use machine learning to provide users with personalised recommendations.

Autonomous Vehicles: Autonomous vehicles use machine learning to detect objects such as traffic lights, lane markers, other vehicles, pedestrians, and so on.

Data Sources for Machine Learning

Machine Learning typically obtains data from a variety of sources, such as databases, text files, audio files, and images.

Data from large public datasets, such as the ImageNet and MNIST datasets, can also be used.

In addition, data from sensors, such as temperature sensors and pressure sensors, are also becoming increasingly common sources of data for Machine Learning.

Here are top 20 common data sources for machine learning –

Kaggle Datasets: Provides thousands of datasets for free access and use by ML enthusiasts.

Google Dataset Search: Google’s searchable dataset search engine allows for quick access to hundreds of datasets.

UCI Machine Learning Repository: The repository contains over 500 datasets for ML use, including imagery, text, audio, and more.

Amazon Web Services (AWS) Public Datasets: AWS provides access to a variety of public datasets, including genomic data, census data, natural language datasets and more.

Microsoft Azure Open Datasets: Open datasets ranging from epidemiology to computer vision data.

ImageNet: Contains millions of images that are annotated for use with machine learning.

US Census Data: US Census data covers population, demographics, and incomes that ML practitioners can use to build predictive models.

Quandl: Provides access to millions of datasets from different sources, including financial data, economic data, and more.

European Data Portal: The EDP provides access to data from across the European Union from both government and private sources.

Open Government Data (OGD): Government data from countries around the world for research, ML, and AI projects.

Census Bureau American Community Survey: The ACS collects detailed information on population and households in the US, providing access to a range of demographic data.

FiveThirtyEight Data: It is a data journalism project with a wealth of datasets backed by articles and analysis.

World Bank Open Data: The World Bank collects and curates a range of economic and financial information with which ML practitioners can build models.

UNDATA: The UN produces data related to economics, population, health, and education, providing access to global datasets.

ImageNet Roulette: Diverse dataset of human faces in a range of ages and ethnicity, ideal for machine learning.

National Climatic Data Center: Access to climate data for use in ML research and projects.

GDELT Project: The Global Database of Events, Language, and Tone (GDELT) project collects information about news events around the world, providing access to millions of data points on political, economic, and social events.

Stanford Open Policing Project: Police stop data from around the US, providing data points on demographics, timestamps, and more.

Google Street View: Images of streets and buildings around the world, which ML practitioners can use to build visual models.

Yelp Open Dataset: Yelp’s open datasets provide access to reviews, businesses, restaurants, and more.

Neural Networks and Deep Learning

Neural networks and deep learning are terms used to describe a type of artificial intelligence (AI) system used for machine learning.

This type of AI focuses on creating algorithms that can recognise patterns and make decisions without human intervention.

Neural networks are composed of layers of artificial neurons that are connected together and respond to data inputs.

As more data is provided, further layers of neurons can be added and the model can be fine-tuned to generate accurate and reliable outputs.

Deep learning algorithms use vast amounts of data to make decisions and can learn from their mistakes as they are used.

Supervised & Unsupervised Learning

Supervised learning is a type of machine learning algorithm that uses a known set of input data and known responses to the data to predict future outputs.

Supervised learning algorithms learn from labelled data, meaning that each input has been labelled with a specific output.

The algorithm uses an objective function to evaluate the performance of the trained model on given data and adjust the model accordingly.

The most common use of supervised learning is for classification or regression, depending on the type of output desired.

Supervised learning is the core of many machine learning tasks, including face recognition, natural language processing, and many others.

Unsupervised learning is a type of machine learning technique that uses computer algorithms to identify patterns in data sets.

They are not trained with labelled data (or supervised learning).

Unsupervised learning algorithms look for similarities between data points and group them based on those commonalities.

Some common examples of unsupervised learning include –

  1. Clustering (grouping data points based on similar characteristics)
  2. Anomaly detection (identifying outliers)
  3. Link analysis (mapping relationships between different data points).

Unsupervised learning can be used to identify trends, inform decisions, and improve predictive models.

Evolutionary Algorithms

Evolutionary algorithms (EAs) are a type of search algorithms used in machine learning tasks, based on the principles of natural selection and evolution.

They are commonly used to optimise the parameters of a given machine learning model in order to find the best set of parameters to make the model perform better.

This is typically done by iteratively creating a population of different parameter values and evaluating their performance.

The best performing parameters are then passed to the next generation of parameters, and the evolution process repeated until the maximum performance has been achieved.

In addition to optimising parameters of existing models, evolutionary algorithms can also be used to independently search for new and potentially better machine learning models.

Reinforcement Learning

Reinforcement learning (RL) is a type of machine learning that enables software agents to learn from interacting with their environment by trial and error.

Reinforcement learning algorithms use rewards and punishments in the form of positive and negative feedback to learn what is the best action to take in a particular state.

This iterative process allows the agent to slowly improve its effectiveness at making decisions, and eventually to become a master of its environment.

Examples of reinforcement learning in action include self-driving cars and robots navigating their environment, playing computer games, and learning to solve problems like natural language processing.

Bayesian Methods

Bayesian Methods are a set of algorithms used in machine learning which make use of Bayesian probabilities in order to make decisions and predictions.

Bayesian Methods use prior probabilities to determine the likelihood of an output being one of a given set of options.

This makes them useful for applications such as classification, prediction, and clustering, where it is necessary to identify the most likely outcome based on incomplete or uncertain information.

Bayesian Methods can also be used to optimise decisions based on multiple objectives.

Natural Language Processing

Natural Language Processing (NLP) is an interdisciplinary field of computer science, artificial intelligence, and linguistics that focuses on the interactions between computers and human (natural) languages.

Its goal is to enable computers to understand, interpret, and generate human language.

NLP is widely used in machine learning for text classification, sentiment analysis, machine translation, and program synthesis, among other tasks.

In text classification, machine learning algorithms are used to analyse and classify text for classification, clustering, summation, and clarification.

Sentiment analysis uses natural language processing to analyse and evaluate text for sentiment, such as positive or negative, in order to identify users’ sentiments and track changes in perception over time.

Machine translation is used to provide real-time translation services of text or audio.

Program synthesis is used to generate code from natural language descriptions.

NLP is also widely used for customer service and customer support.

Chatbots are used for customer service, customer support, and customer segmentation, as well as for customer engagement and retention.

In addition, NLP can be used for automatic summation of customer feedback and for customer segmentation.

This enables companies to gain customer insights in order to better target potential customers.

Overall, NLP is used in machine learning to analyse, interpret, and generate human language.

It is also used to achieve specific objectives such as customer service, customer segmentation, and customer engagement.

NLP techniques are used to assist machine learning algorithms in natural language understanding, sentiment analysis, program synthesis, and more, leading to more effective and efficient machine learning applications.

Computer Vision

Computer vision is a sub-field of AI that involves using algorithms to enable computers to interpret images and videos.

It has become an increasingly popular area of research in machine learning, as it can allow machines to automatically identify features of objects, classify objects and activities, and even imitate human behaviour.

Since computer vision techniques require a large amount of data for training.

Challenges of Machine Learning

Machine learning comes with a set of challenges –


One of the greatest challenges in machine learning is preparing the data for input into the model.

The data quality, size and context must all be considered when creating a model.

As data can often be inconsistent, noisy or missing, data pre-processing and cleaning must often be applied before creating a model in order to ensure accurate results.

Feature Selection

Feature selection is the process of choosing which features or variables of the data should be included in the model.

Too many features can be problematic because they could cause the model to over-fit on the training data, have difficulty generalising to new data, or require more time and resources to train.

Over-fitting and Under-fitting

The key goal of machine learning is to create a model which generalises well to unseen data.

Over-fitting occurs when the model fits the training data too closely, usually due to having too complex a model or having too many features, and consequently does not generalize well to unseen data.

On the other hand, under-fitting occurs when the model does not fit the training data closely enough, usually due to not having enough features or too simple a model, and consequently does not have the ability to make accurate predictions on unseen data.

Model Selection

Selecting the best model is a key challenge in machine learning.

There is no one-size-fits-all model, so creating and evaluating multiple models is a common practice to ensure that the best one is chosen.

This requires identifying the best hyper-parameters, using validation techniques and assessing model performance metrics.

Human Interpret-ability

While the advances in technology and data allow us to develop sophisticated models, their outputs can be difficult for humans to interpret.

This lack of interpret-ability can sometimes make it difficult to assess the trustworthiness of the model and its predictions and thus make decisions based on them.

Tools For Developing Machine Learning

Machine Learning is a powerful technology that is revolutionising the way data is analysed and used.

It is increasingly being used to develop insights and make decisions in a wide range of industries.

However, it requires a certain level of expertise and knowledge to utilise the technology to its fullest potential.

Fortunately, there are now a number of tools available to facilitate Machine Learning and make it accessible to more people.

Let take a look at some of the most popular and useful tools for learning Machine Learning.

These tools provide resources and guidance for learning the basics of Machine Learning, as well as tools for training, visualisation, and developing new models.


It is a popular open source machine learning library for Python.

It is built on top of NumPy, SciPy, and Matplotlib and provides a range of supervised and unsupervised learning algorithms.

It is designed to be efficient and user-friendly, allowing users to quickly create machine learning models.


An open source library developed by Google.

It provides powerful tools for creating deep learning models, which have recently become very popular in machine learning research.

It also provides tools for distributed training and making predictions with your models.


Java-based machine learning toolkit that provides a collection of powerful algorithms.

It is often used in educational settings to help students understand the power of machine learning.


Open source neural network library written in Python.

It provides a simple and intuitive API for creating models and running experiments.

It is well-suited for quick prototyping, making it a popular choice for researchers and data scientists.

Azure Machine Learning Studio

Cloud-based platform for creating, training, and deploying machine learning models.

It provides users with an intuitive graphical interface for building models, as well as powerful tools for experimenting with algorithms.

Where To Learn Machine Learning

There are a number of online and offline options available for machine learning in India.

Online Courses

Coursera: Offers a wide range of specializations and courses in machine learning, including the Machine Learning Specialization.

The courses covers topics such as regression models and artificial intelligence.

Udemy: Offers a variety of courses focusing on machine learning algorithms and techniques.

They also teach larger concepts such as data science and artificial intelligence.

EdX: Offers online learning in machine learning and data science.

The courses include the Machine Learning Basics course offered by Microsoft and the Practical Machine Learning course offered by Harvard University.

Offline Courses

IIIT-Hyderabad (International Institute of Information Technology): M.Tech in Machine Learning and Data Science.

International Institute of Information Technology (IIIT-Bangalore): M.Tech in Machine Learning and Deep Learning.

3 Arces Training: Offline training in Machine Learning, with the option of customization.

Pune University: Diploma in Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence.

Is a Degree In Computer Science Needed For Machine Learning

No, a degree in computer science is not necessary to learn machine learning.

There is no single eligibility criteria for studying machine learning.

Generally, it’s best to have some experience in mathematics (especially calculus and linear algebra), basic programming skills, and an understanding of statistics.

Additionally, knowledge of databases, algorithm design and development, and probability theory can be beneficial.

However, a computer science degree can help to have a basic understanding of the fundamentals of computer science and mathematics.

Additionally, courses in machine learning or courses tailored to your specific use case can help to gain the necessary knowledge to work with machine learning.

How To Get Started In Machine Learning

Familiarise yourself with programming languages:

Start by learning a popular programming language like Python, R, C++, or Java, which are all commonly used for ML tasks.

Learning a language like Python will also teach you fundamentals, including object-oriented programming and basic data structures, which you can use to build ML algorithms.

Take a course

Take an online course or an in-person course to learn the fundamentals of machine learning.

Online courses such as Coursera and DataCamp offer comprehensive introductions to machine learning.

They cover topics like supervised and unsupervised learning, neural networks, and data pre-processing.

Work through tutorials

There are a plethora of tutorials available to help you get familiar with the basics of machine learning.

Seek out educational materials from websites like Kaggle or YouTube.

You can also pick up books on machine learning from respected publishers like O’Reilly or Cambridge University Press.

Build a portfolio

Once you’ve gained the basic knowledge of machine learning, it’s time to start building your portfolio.

Try building projects from scratch on your own to demonstrate your skills.

You can also look for online competitions or hackathons to participate in and practice your ML skills.


As you continue to hone your skills, networking with others in the ML field is important .

This way you can stay informed about developments in the industry, find job opportunities, and stay connected with the larger ML community.

Attend local meetups, exchange ideas with peers, and stay active on relevant social media sites.

Career Roles For Machine Learning Engineers

A Machine Learning Engineer (MLE) is a software engineer specialised in working on machine learning products and systems.

They usually have some experience with software development and knowledge of data science, along with a good understanding of Machine Learning algorithms and techniques.

Career roles for Machine Learning Engineers include:

  1. Artificial Intelligence Researcher/Developer
  2. Machine Learning Architect
  3. Machine Learning Engineer
  4. Data Scientist
  5. Natural Language Processing (NLP) Engineer
  6. Business Intelligence Analyst
  7. Autonomous System Developer
  8. Robotics Engineer
  9. Research Scientist
  10. Computer Vision Engineer