Here’s how a neural network works

Apr 25, 2016

Daniel Smilkov and Shan Carter at Google put together this interactive learner for how a neural network works. In case you’re unfamiliar with the method:

It’s a technique for building a computer program that learns from data. It is based very loosely on how we think the human brain works. First, a collection of software “neurons” are created and connected together, allowing them to send messages to each other. Next, the network is asked to solve a problem, which it attempts to do over and over, each time strengthening the connections that lead to success and diminishing those that lead to failure.

I took one course on neural networks in college and poked around at those parameters for hours for various homework assignments and projects. I was basically a monkey pushing at buttons to see what images I could produce. I wish I had something like this to mess around with, so I could actually see the process.

Favorites

10 Best Data Visualization Projects of 2015

These are my picks for the best of 2015. As usual, they could easily appear in a different order on a different day, and there are projects not on the list that were also excellent.

Divorce Rates for Different Groups

We know when people usually get married. We know who never marries. Finally, it’s time to look at the other side: divorce and remarriage.

10 Best Data Visualization Projects of 2017

It was a rough year, which brought about a lot of good work. Here are my favorite data visualization projects of the year.

How You Will Die

So far we’ve seen when you will die and how other people tend to die. Now let’s put the two together to see how and when you will die, given your sex, race, and age.