Well, the good news is that a lot of people are interested in machine learning. It is the topmost career choice for many people today. Its amazing capabilities of making machines understand data are impeccable, and if you are looking for any in-demand career option, there isn't a better option than machine learning. It's exploding everywhere in emails and smartphones as smart algorithms are being used in every field.
Here are a few things that you need to understand before jumping in:
Before we dive in and learn the best way to prepare for a career in machine learning, it is important to ensure that you are interested in the field. Your career path should not be something influenced by other people, a career in trend or what your parents want you to become. It should be simply something you are interested in. If you are not sure whether you want to do this or not, read the below tips and make an informed decision.
1. Understand The Concept
More than anything, you need to first learn what machine learning is and how it works. In simple words, it is a process in which computers are enabled to learn automatically, make decisions and increase experience without human supervision. The main aim behind machine learning and all its algorithms is to let computers learn and evolve automatically without needing human guidance.
Although it may sound a lot similar to data analysis, these are two different yet related fields. Data analysis involves analysing data to provide insights and both the receiving and working ends of this process involve humans. In machine learning, computers have to analyse data, interpret trends, make decisions and act accordingly.
This is just a gist of what machine learning looks like. If you want to build a career in the same, you need to get a deep and clear understanding of this and much more.
2. Encourage Your Curiosity
Whatever you have heard, read or seen about machine learning, it is only going to get bigger in the future. Our coming generations will see a completely new era of machine learning and artificial intelligence. To adjust to these growing demands, you need to encourage your curiosity to constantly keep learning and most importantly keep inventing.
Some curiosity is good as it will help you learn more about new technologies, new inventions and understand why some things happen in the way they happen.
3. Learn To Translate Business Problems Mathematically
One thing that you always need to keep in mind is that machine learning is much more than it seems. It is not a bunch of engineers trying to work their way through artificial intelligence. It takes logical minds with extreme knowledge and interest in maths, data analysis and technology.
You need all of these together, and if you miss even one of the elements, it won't work fine. Knowledge of these three things will help you transform business problems into machine problems with mathematics.
4. Learn To Work In A Team
Machine learning may bring to mind a picture of one person working in a big lab containing machines and computers. This may have been true some years ago, but, now, machine learning is teamwork. You need a team to work on various aspects, and it is not possible to work solo. So, you need to be able to work in a team for this career.
5. Get Familiar With Data Analysis
As already discussed, data analysis is related to machine learning. If you already have experience in data analysis, you are automatically crossing one thing from your list of things you need to have knowledge of. Additionally, it will offer you an analytical view of things. You'll be able to figure out patterns, read data for insights and get an overall clear visual of what is happening.
6. Learn Python And Understand ML Libraries Usage
In the 3rd point we talked about how you need to know maths, have knowledge of data analysis and knowledge of technology. Learning python and machine learning libraries is the technical part. At some point, you should be able to implement your theoretical knowledge to machines and make these machines learn and improvise. For that to happen, learning programming and understanding machine learning libraries is a must.
7. Catch Up On Industry Updates
Any data-driven job role has some specific goals relevant to the industry. Same is the case with machine learning. You will have specific goals to fulfil relevant to the industry you want to work in. Hence, to build a career in machine learning, stay updated with industry details. Gain more knowledge of specific requirements and stay up to date with what is going on in the industry including new inventions.
8. Try Online Courses And Classes
After all these things, checkout some online courses and classes and start learning. Don't wait for someone to come by and teach you everything; teach yourself. Learn as much as you can. Meet people from the same field and ask them what knowledge you need.
Take up unpaid internships under successful machine learning engineers even if that means only observing what they do. You'll learn more from this than any book. So, put on your work shoes and get going without any delay.
Understanding Machine Learning With An Example
For instance, if you run a grocery store and you need to figure out how to distribute coupons based on a customer's previous purchase pattern, a data analyst will sit with previous data and analyse the patterns. This will go on for every customer manually.
A machine learning person, on the other hand, will form an intelligent system to automatically generate coupons with data interrelationships. This will enable everything to run smoothly without human intervention.
If you still want to build a career in machine learning, then don't waste even a single second. Get to work and start gaining more and more knowledge on the subject.