Examples of Machine Learning Problems

Machine Learning problems are abound. They make up core or difficult parts of the software you use on the web or on your desktop everyday. Think of the “do you want to follow” suggestions on twitter and the speech understanding in Apple’s Siri.

Below are some examples of machine learning that really ground what machine learning is all about.

  • Spam Detection : Given email in an inbox, identify those email messages that are spam and those that are not. Having a model of this problem would allow a program to leave non-spam emails in the inbox and move spam emails to a spam folder. We should all be familiar with this example.

  • Credit Card Fraud Detection : Given credit card transactions for a customer in a month, identify those transactions that were made by the customer and those that were not. A program with a model of this decision could refund those transactions that were fraudulent.

  • Digit Recognition : Given a zip codes hand written on envelops, identify the digit for each hand written character. A model of this problem would allow a computer program to read and understand handwritten zip codes and sort envelops by geographic region.