Computational model used in machine learning, based on connected, hierarchical functions.
Neural Networks are a set of algorithms, modeled loosely after the human brain, designed to recognize patterns. They interpret sensory data through a kind of machine perception, labeling or clustering raw input. The patterns they recognize are numerical, contained in vectors, into which all real-world data, be it images, sound, text or time series, must be translated.
Neural Networks are a fundamental part of artificial intelligence (AI). They are designed to simulate the behavior of the human brain—albeit far from matching its ability—, with the goal of making it easier for computers to understand and interpret a variety of complex data inputs.
Neural Networks are composed of layers of computational units called neurons, or nodes. Each layer is fully connected to the next one, meaning each neuron in a layer is connected to all neurons in the next layer. The main components of Neural Networks are:
Neurons: These are the basic units of a neural network. They take inputs, and based on these inputs they produce an output.
Weights and Biases: Weights are the strength or amplitude of the input signal, and biases help to adjust the output along with the weighted sum of the inputs to the neuron.
Activation Functions: These determine the output of a neural network. Their main purpose is to convert an input signal of a node in a neural network to an output signal. That output signal is used as an input in the next layer in the stack.
There are several types of neural networks, each of which has a specific use case and is structured in a different way. Here are a few types:
Feedforward Neural Networks: The information in this type of neural network moves in only one direction—forward—from the input nodes, through the hidden nodes (if any) and to the output nodes. There are no cycles or loops in the network.
Radial Basis Function Neural Networks: These networks can, in a way, be considered as a variant of the feedforward neural network. They have the same structure as a feedforward neural network except for the radial basis function used as activation function in the hidden layer neurons.
Recurrent Neural Networks (RNN): Unlike feedforward neural networks, RNNs are not stateless; they have connections that have loops, adding feedback and memory to the networks over time. This memory allows this type of network to remember all the information about what has been calculated. It uses the same parameters for each input as it performs the same task on all the inputs or hidden layers to produce the output. This reduces the complexity of parameters, unlike other networks.
Convolutional Neural Networks (CNN): These are mainly feedforward networks, where information moves from the input layer to the output layer. However, what makes CNNs different is their ability to automatically and adaptively learn spatial hierarchies of features.
Backpropagation is a method used to train neural networks by calculating the gradient of the loss function. This gradient is then used in an optimization process to adjust the parameters of the neural network in order to minimize the loss function.
Gradient Descent is an optimization algorithm that's used when training a machine learning model. It's based on a convex function and tweaks its parameters iteratively to minimize a given function to its local minimum.
In conclusion, neural networks are a crucial part of how modern AI functions by mimicking the workings of the human brain. Understanding them is key to understanding how we can make machines learn and make decisions like humans.