More Machine Learning From Udacity
Written by Sue Gee   
Friday, 20 November 2015

Udacity has opened a new Nanodegree in Machine Learning. At advanced level it prepares you to apply predictive models to massive data sets in fields like education, finance, healthcare or robotics.

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The curriculum for the Machine Learning Engineer Nanodegree  has been developed with Google and in his email announcement Sebastian Thrun played up this selling point: 

If you followed the news, you saw that our partner, Google, just open-sourced TensorFlow, its deep learning software. And get this: our program already has a class on deep learning in TensorFlow in development, overseen by Vincent Vanhoucke, technical lead and manager in Google's deep learning infrastructure team.

Over the 10 to 12-month period required to complete the project-based certification students will:

 

  • Analyze the class and complexity of a given problem, and identify an appropriate algorithm and/or tools to apply towards solving it (e.g. gesture recognition, robot control).

  • Design an intelligent system that can act on the basis of input data towards optimizing some desired goal metric, with minimal supervision from a human.

  • Analyze the performance of an intelligent algorithm / system and present key metrics (such as accuracy, recall, computing time, etc. as appropriate) in an easy-to-understand and visually appealing form Handle the entire machine learning pipeline, from data to system.

The four set projects and the topics covered by their supporting courses are:

Project 1: Predicting Boston Housing Prices
Statistical techniques, Model Evaluation, Validation and Optimization.

Project 2: Building a Student Intervention System
Supervised Learning, Decision Trees, Regression, Neural Networks, Kernel Methods, Instance Based Learning, Bayesian Learning, Ensemble Learning.

Project 3: Creating Customer Segments
Clustering, Feature Scaling, Feature Selection, Feature Transformation, Semi-Supervised Learning.

Project 4: Train a Smartcab How to Drive
Markov Decision Processes, Reinforcement Learning, Game Theory.

The fifth and final component is a Capstone Project in which students apply multiple learning techniques to design an application to solve a problem of their own choice.

Enrollment in a Nanodegree program is subscription based at a fee of $200 per month after a 1-week free trial. If you graduate in less than 12 months you get half your tuition fee back. 

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For those who are interested in the course content without wanting a certificate or having their projects evaluated, a lot of the materials are already available online for free. The links provided are:

General:

 

 

Specific to Project 1:

 

 

Specific to Project 4:

 

Not only is Machine Learning a hot topic, it is one that seems to fit very well with the MOOC model and this is likely to be a popular Nanodegree.

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Last Updated ( Friday, 20 November 2015 )