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Reflecting on 2016 to Guide BigML’s Journey in 2017

by on January 19, 2017

2016 has proven a whirlwind year for BigML with substantial growth in users, customers and the team riding on the realization by businesses and experts that Machine Learning has transformational power in the new economy where data is in abundance but actionable insights have not been able to keep pace with improvements in storage, computational power and lowered costs. When things happen so fast, one can sometimes find it a challenge to stop and reflect on milestones and achievements. So below are the highlights of what made 2016 a special year for BigML.

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Releases and Product Updates

In 2016, BigML users were greeted by many new capabilities that they were asking for. As a result, the platform is now more mature and versatile than ever.  Logistic Regression (Summer 2016 Release) and Topic Modeling (Fall 2016 Release) techniques beefed up existing supervised and unsupervised learning resources, while Workflow Automation with WhizzML (Spring 2016 Release) gave the platform a whole new dimension that can deliver huge productivity boosts to any analytics team in the form of reduced solution maintenance and mitigated model management risks.

Aside from those, we made many smaller but noteworthy improvements to the toolset including but not limited to: Scriptify, Objective-C bindings, Swift SDK and BigML for Alexa.

Events, Certifications and Awards

2016 has seen BigML being represented at 4YFNMachine Learning PraguePAPIs 2016 and PAPIs Connect, Legal Management ForumIEEE Rock Stars of Emerging TechWIRED, Mobey DayData Wrangling Automation and other industry events around the world with flattering reception and genuine enthusiasm that keeps pushing the team to innovate. Most notably, we have created a new and very hands-on BigML Certification Program that teaches participants how to solve practical real-life Machine Learning problems.  The next wave starts on January 19th, 2017!

After conducting the 2nd Valencian Summer School in Machine Learning followed by a special lecture by BigML advisor Professor Geoff Webb, BigML gave its first Brazilian Summer School in Machine Learning in São Paulo. Look for more education events to follow in 2017 as BigML has joined forces with CICE in Madrid to take its educational efforts to the next level to capitalize on the great hunger for Machine Learning from developers, analysts and scientist.

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Although the biggest award for us are the compliments we receive from our users and customers, in 2016, we were also pleased to be recognized by DIA Barcelona and Zapier for best advanced analytics for insurance companies and BigML for Google Sheets respectively.

Popular Posts of 2016

Some of the Machine Learning veterans on our team, also were able to make time in sharing their career experiences over multiple posts that were well-received.

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For reprise, here is a good selection to revisit for those who would like to gain new perspectives on the current market landscape and what has worked in real life situations right from the horses mouth.

Looking Forward to 2017

Now that the awareness of Machine Learning in general, and cloud-born Machine Learning platforms in particular, have reached a critical threshold, our go-to-market strategy will double up on communicating positive examples to the entire community rather than having to explain “Why Machine Learning Matters” to the uninitiated.  In that regard, we must also thank Google, Apple, Uber, Airbnb, Facebook, Amazon, Microsoft for putting Machine Learning squarely in the business lexicon.

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In 2017, we also intend to intensify our educational efforts that promote learning by doing, while expanding the breadth and depth of capabilities to enable Agile Machine Learning at any organization in any industry. A big part of this will manifest itself through our active participation in technology events. We are kicking off the year with a trio of events, where BigML speakers will be on stage:

  • Anomaly Detection: Principles, Benchmarking, Explanation, and Theory

    Anomaly detection algorithms are widely applied in data cleaning, fraud detection, and cybersecurity. This talk will begin by defining various anomaly detection tasks and then focus on unsupervised anomaly detection. It will present a benchmarking study comparing eight state-of-the-art methods. Then it will discuss methods for explaining anomalies to experts and incorporating expert feedback into the anomaly detection process. The talk will conclude with a theoretical (PAC-learning) framework for formalizing a large family of anomaly detection algorithms based on discovering rare patterns.

    Speaker: Thomas G. Dietterich, Co-Founder and Chief Scientist.

  • FiturtechY

    FiturtechY is an event organized by the Instituto Tecnológico Hotelero (ITH), where innovation and technology meet to improve the tourism industry. FiturtechY will host four forums to discuss different topics: business, destiny, sustainability, and trends. BigML will be presenting at #techYnegocio forum, the meeting point for those professionals who seek to learn the latest tools that help revolutionize the tourism industry.

    Speaker: Dario Lombardi, VP of Predictive FinTech.

  • Computer-Supported Cooperative Work and Social Computing

    CSCW is the premier venue for presenting research in the design and use of technologies that affect groups, organizations, communities, and networks. Bringing together top researchers and practitioners from academia and industry, CSCW explores the technical, social, material, and theoretical challenges of designing technology to support collaborative work and life activities.

    Speaker: Poul Petersen, Chief Infrastructure Officer.

We also intend to put together the first BigML User Conference later in the year. So stay tuned for further event updates.

Hope this post gave a good crash course tour (especially for those of you that have recently joined BigML) of what’s been happening around our neck of the woods. Powered by your support, we’re hungrier than ever to bring to the market the best Machine Learning software platform there ever was. We’d also highly encourage you to take a look at our 2017 predictions, which will guide our roadmap in the remainder of the year.  As always, be sure to reach out to us with your ideas no matter how crazy they seem!

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