Brazilian Entrepreneurs Meet at the BSSML17 and Bet on ML to Increase Business Competitiveness

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The BigML Team continues traveling around the world to help democratize Machine Learning across geographies, industries, and organizations of all kinds. BigML, together with Sebrae and Telefónica Open Future_, brought to Curitiba, Parana, the fifth edition of our series of international Machine Learning Summer Schools, the second in Brazil, to prepare companies specialized in Information Technology to see business opportunities.

The one-day crash course took place this week, on November 29, and gave 45 entrepreneurs, programmers and students, from Paraná and other states in Brazil, a quick and practical introduction to Machine Learning. Subjects included supervised and unsupervised learning techniques, data transformations and feature engineering, as well as more advanced topics to learn how to automate Machine Learning workflows. The workshop provided practical knowledge of fast and useful techniques for how to use Machine Learning to improve performance and increase the competitiveness of companies. You can check the packed agenda on the BigML’s SlideShare account and visit the BSSML17 photo albums on Facebook and Google+ to see more pictures from the event.

The Chief Infrastructure Officer of BiGML, Poul Petersen, conducted all sessions and said that despite the technical theory, which involves mathematical calculations and statistical knowledge, the course balanced the content with educational and practical aspects that the tool entails. “We wanted to give a sense of how things work, in a simple way. Another relevant aspect is that the focus is not on the immediate result, but the long term … to prepare companies and professionals to succeed in the next five to 10 years,” he said.

A common and relevant question among participants and organizers was, “Are Machine Learning concepts applicable to small businesses?” Petersen’s response was emphatic: “Yes, they certainly are. Many companies that participated in the course were startups that often compete in the market with much larger and well-structured companies. And there they were gaining the knowledge to innovate and increase their competitiveness in the disputed Brazilian market. These companies, if they continue investing in knowledge, will certainly bother, in a good sense, the big players in the market,” he added.

“The concepts of Machine Learning are not restricted to technology companies. They will be incorporated into products and services in all branches of business. They make data correlations to project, with greater precision, what will happen in the future. That is why they are strategic and very important tools to generate competitiveness, boost growth and improve results,” summarized Julio Agostini, Sebrae/PR Operations Director. Regarding the Machine Learning Summer School in Curitiba, the BSSML17, Julio Agostini commented that “the difference of this course is that the attendees participate in a workshop, where they had practical experiences of how to apply the concepts to be able to evaluate the use in their businesses and to see opportunities for innovation, modernization of processes and development of new products and services to expand their activities.”

Pedro Riviere, head of strategic partnerships of Wayra at Telefónica Open Future_, said he was happy to contribute to the viability of the event. “Thanks to this global Telefónica project, Open Future_, which circulates in many countries and has already invested in projects of more than 700 startups in the world, including BigML, we managed to include Brazil in the script. It was a great learning opportunity for the Paraná entrepreneurs to have access to the content of BigML, the company that pioneered the creation of Machine Learning as a Service (MLAAS).

Among the attendees were relevant companies from Brazil such as Cinq, DP6, and Escotta Consulting, that wanted to delve deeper into learning leading Machine Learning tools like BigML to really get the insights of their data with ease in order to keep their businesses competitive in the marketplace. This great spirit only served to further validate BigML’s enthusiasm to continue organizing more Machine Learning Schools, so a big thank you to everyone for coming and following our educational activities! For more information on future Machine Learning Summer Schools please visit the dedicated page and stay tuned for future announcements!

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