Article Series: An Introduction to Machine Learning

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Machine learning has long powered many products we interact with daily - from "intelligent" assistants like Apple's Siri and Google Now, to recommendation engines like Amazon's that suggest new products to buy, to the ad ranking systems used by Google and Facebook. More recently, machine learning has entered the public consciousness because of advances in "deep learning" - these include AlphaGo's defeat of Go grandmaster Lee Sedol and impressive new products around image recognition and machine translation. In this series, we give an introduction to some powerful but generally applicable techniques in machine learning. These include deep learning but also more traditional methods that are often all the modern business needs. After reading the articles in the series, you should have the knowledge necessary to embark on concrete machine learning experiments in a variety of areas on your own.


Can AI Achieve Common Sense to Make Machines More Intelligent?

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Today machines with artificial intelligence (AI) are becoming more prevalent in society. Across many fields, AI has taken over numerous tasks that humans used to do earlier. As the reference is to human intelligence, artificial intelligence is being modified into what humans can do. However, the technology has not yet matched the level of utmost wisdom possessed by humans and it seems like it is not going to achieve the milestone any time sooner. To replace human beings at most jobs, machines need to exhibit what we intuitively call "common sense".


Scaling All-Goals Updates in Reinforcement Learning Using Convolutional Neural Networks

arXiv.org Machine Learning

Being able to reach any desired location in the environment can be a valuable asset for an agent. Learning a policy to navigate between all pairs of states individually is often not feasible. An all-goals updating algorithm uses each transition to learn Q-values towards all goals simultaneously and off-policy. However the expensive numerous updates in parallel limited the approach to small tabular cases so far. To tackle this problem we propose to use convolutional network architectures to generate Q-values and updates for a large number of goals at once. We demonstrate the accuracy and generalization qualities of the proposed method on randomly generated mazes and Sokoban puzzles. In the case of on-screen goal coordinates the resulting mapping from frames to distance-maps directly informs the agent about which places are reachable and in how many steps. As an example of application we show that replacing the random actions in epsilon-greedy exploration by several actions towards feasible goals generates better exploratory trajectories on Montezuma's Revenge and Super Mario All-Stars games.


The Moral Imperative of Artificial Intelligence

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The big news on March 12 of this year was of the Go-playing AI-system AlphaGo securing victory against 18-time world champion Lee Se-dol by winning the third straight game of a five-game match in Seoul, Korea. After Deep Blue's victory against chess world champion Gary Kasparov in 1997, the game of Go was the next grand challenge for game-playing artificial intelligence. Go has defied the brute-force methods in game-tree search that worked so successfully in chess. In 2012, Communications published a Research Highlight article by Sylvain Gelly et al. on computer Go, which reported that "Programs based on Monte-Carlo tree search now play at human-master levels and are beginning to challenge top professional players." AlphaGo combines tree-search techniques with search-space reduction techniques that use deep learning.


The Moral Imperative of Artificial Intelligence

#artificialintelligence

The big news on March 12 of this year was of the Go-playing AI-system AlphaGo securing victory against 18-time world champion Lee Se-dol by winning the third straight game of a five-game match in Seoul, Korea. After Deep Blue's victory against chess world champion Gary Kasparov in 1997, the game of Go was the next grand challenge for game-playing artificial intelligence. Go has defied the brute-force methods in game-tree search that worked so successfully in chess. In 2012, Communications published a Research Highlight article by Sylvain Gelly et al. on computer Go, which reported that "Programs based on Monte-Carlo tree search now play at human-master levels and are beginning to challenge top professional players." AlphaGo combines tree-search techniques with search-space reduction techniques that use deep learning.