Machine learning “still a cottage industry”

Machine learning will have a huge impact on business and society but at present is “still a cottage industry”, says Professor Bob Williamson, chief scientist of CSIRO’s Data 61 group. There’s been a resurgence of interest in machine learning in recent years. Though it’s not a new concept, factors like Big Data, the availability of more powerful computational processing and cheaper data storage, means more CIOs are investigating its applications. But there’s still “an awful lot of black art” in the discipline according to Williamson, who specialises in machine learning and analytics at Data 61. Speaking at a SAS customer event in Sydney, Williamson outlined the need for those working in the field to better share and standardise their work. “There’s very few standards. There’s very little reuse,” he explained.…


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