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What is Machine Learning?

Machine Learning is simply making a computer perform a task without explicitly programming it. If we impose business rules to build a system and not let the machine find patterns on its own, we will not be able to put up with the versatility of the data that comes in.

Let’s explain this with an example. Suppose we manually looked through data to find patterns and coded our systems such that if I fall in the age range of 30-40 and I am a male, I would like product X more than product Y. What we did not consider is the personalization parameter. What if I am the odd one out who likes product Y? Even if I give some meaningful feedback about my choices like product ratings, reviews etc. it won’t be possible for a manually driven system to consume that information for all customers and recommend the right product for each customer.

Here machine learning becomes more of a necessity than a luxury if we want to be ahead of the curve.

**What are the skills required to be a data scientist who uses machine learning?**

Well, it’s more of a broader question. Let’s say the perfect data scientist is a person who possesses vast

- Domain knowledge,
- Advanced Mathematics knowledge
- Statistics skills,
- Proficient coding skills, and has
- Excellent communication skills.

But with the evolution of data sciences, we have simplified these problems to a great extent.

Someone who possesses the intuition of what these concepts are about is likely to be a better fit than someone who possesses all those skills and doesn’t know where to apply it.

If we look at where the market stands, we have excellent data scientists with all kinds of background.

- Doctors learning how to code and picking up statistical concepts to make a contribution to the Healthcare industry.
- People from statistics or mathematics background are a natural fit.
- Engineers are always highly regarded in this field.
- Physicists, Geologists, and Management graduates all coming in and scoring excellent jobs in their respective domains.

So it’s not about the qualification as such, it’s about the learning attitude and application skills that are taken into account. A knack for identifying and solving business problems is treated in high esteem.

*This article has been contributed by our faculty member who is a Machine Learning enthusiast and continuously experimenting with new Data Analytics tools. *

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