What is Machine Learning? A definition

Machine learning is an application of artificial intelligence (AI) that provides systems the ability to automatically learn and improve from experience without being explicitly programmed. Machine learning focuses on the development of computer programs that can access data and use it learn for themselves.

The process of learning begins with observations or data, such as examples, direct experience, or instruction, in order to look for patterns in data and make better decisions in the future based on the examples that we provide. The primary aim is to allow the computers learn automatically without human intervention or assistance and adjust actions accordingly.

Some machine learning methods

  1. Machine learning algorithms are often categorized as supervised or unsupervised.
  2. Supervised machine learning algorithms can apply what has been learned in the past to new data using labeled examples to predict future events. Starting from the analysis of a known training dataset, the learning algorithm produces an inferred function to make predictions about the output values. The system is able to provide targets for any new input after sufficient training. The learning algorithm can also compare its output with the correct, intended output and find errors in order to modify the model accordingly.
  3. In contrast, unsupervised machine learning algorithms are used when the information used to train is neither classified nor labeled. Unsupervised learning studies how systems can infer a function to describe a hidden structure from unlabeled data. The system doesn’t figure out the right output, but it explores the data and can draw inferences from datasets to describe hidden structures from unlabeled data.
  4. Semi-supervised machine learning algorithms fall somewhere in between supervised and unsupervised learning, since they use both labeled and unlabeled data for training – typically a small amount of labeled data and a large amount of unlabeled data. The systems that use this method are able to considerably improve learning accuracy. Usually, semi-supervised learning is chosen when the acquired labeled data requires skilled and relevant resources in order to train it / learn from it. Otherwise, acquiringunlabeled data generally doesn’t require additional resources.
  5. Reinforcement machine learning algorithms is a learning method that interacts with its environment by producing actions and discovers errors or rewards. Trial and error search and delayed reward are the most relevant characteristics of reinforcement learning. This method allows machines and software agents to automatically determine the ideal behavior within a specific context in order to maximize its performance. Simple reward feedback is required for the agent to learn which action is best; this is known as the reinforcement signal.
  6. Machine learning enables analysis of massive quantities of data. While it generally delivers faster, more accurate results in order to identify profitable opportunities or dangerous risks, it may also require additional time and resources to train it properly. Combining machine learning with AI and cognitive technologies can make it even more effective in processing large volumes of information.

Reasons Why Business Networking is so Important

It does not matter if you are within a career or running a business, networking is essential to building business relationships. Now as a serial entrepreneur my past corporate experience empowered me to consult and network with other employees in order to develop those relationships and deliver an outstanding service.

Here are my 5 Reasons why networking is so important:

Helps Refine Proposition

The more we speak to people at networking events the more we can use the experience as a focus group to further develop the services we offer to clients. All the services we offer, tap into over 15 years of professional business and entrepreneurial experience and the absolute necessity to advance women in order to sustain business in a more interconnected and global economy.

Masters Business Pitch

Speaking to a number of people at networking events you can start to master your business pitch. we am now able to ask questions and unpick quickly what skills set we can talk about (if applicable) and convey that in 30 seconds, simply by networking and having a general interest in people and how I may be able to help.

Builds Character

We have found that networking in a variety of different environments and for a number of well-known networks has built my character. We are now able to go up to anyone in a room and just have a chat while mentioning my business. This in itself has built my character into the confident and resilient character that I now see in the mirror. It can be daunting but actively going to as many networking events as I can enables me to learn more about myself. We see every event we go to as a continuing professional development pursuit.

Increases Confidence

When building your character a direct cause and effect of this is an increase in confidence, you suddenly lose that nervousness and feel able to go up to absolutely anyone. We always think to ourselves that we are all humans and one human is not any more important than the other – we all have a contribution to make

Widens Circle of Influence

Due to the number of years we have been networking we now have a wide network. As you become more known you too will start to widen your circle of influence. You’ll be able to talk to anyone and feel confidence in who you are and how you can empower and have an impact. With the level of power you will gain, the influence will increase and the ripple effect felt.

5 Reasons Why Networking Is Important

When choosing to pursue an MBA from your desired business school, perhaps one of the most vital aspects that you have thoroughly considered is the numerous networking opportunities that you will have access to. The MBA degree is in its own category when it comes to networking. Not only do business schools strongly encourage it, but they also attempt to facilitate it after graduation. Networking is fun, enriching, career-enhancing and thought-provoking. But most of you already know this. To those of you that prefer to keep to yourselves: gear up your engines, as we are about to give you five reasons why networking matters.

 

Networking can help you climb the career ladder

While not all students think of starting their own business, some choose to work for others and make a robust career. You can easily talk to people and gauge different career opportunities in order to climb up the career ladder, and there is no better place to do it other than your MBA classroom. You may not meet a person working for the same company as you across the border, but you are definitely bound to meet people who are working in the same industry or in an industry that you are interested in. They can tell you about companies you didn’t even know existed, opportunities at companies you did know existed, but could never learn about from open channels, or even some tips on landing a job in the industry, you thought you knew, but ultimately didn’t.

And if that is too confusing to you, try grasping public-private funding of space exploration! Come to think of it, networking could probably help with that, too. After all, Elon Musk met all kinds of people at University of Pennsylvania and Stanford, which inspired him to found SpaceX later in his life.

Networking is encouraged by Business schools

Business schools have their own alumni networks which ensure that peers do not lose contact with one another. Business schools encourage networking throughout the entire academic period, as well as in the years after graduation. The premise is that networking can lead to some very serious business interactions, which the school can claim (and rightfully so) to have been the facilitator of. In addition to that, schools often organise events, which are aimed at maintaining these networks. Guest lectures and appearances, references, participation in charity events and donation campaigns are just a few of the things that an MBA alumnus can expect to take part in as a result of embracing school-facilitated networking.

And that’s not even including the fact that 10 years from your graduation day, you might be personally acquainted with opinion leaders of industries such as finance, tech and consumer electronics.

Networking can help you start your own business

MBA students may be interested in different things, but you are bound to meet several people who are interested in beginning their own business after completing their MBA. If you are looking for a partner, a person with better access to angel investors, or someone who knows how to find hedge funds, and other similar sources, networking may be your best bet.

Additionally, as the saying goes, “two heads are better than one”, and you may find people with exceptional creative abilities, established professional skills, or a highly feasible business idea that can help you begin your own business. Or, you could become part of theirs. Some of the most worthwhile business friendships begin in school so do not rule this opportunity out when networking with other students in your class.

 Networking is a long-term investment

While you may not be searching for like-mindedness or perhaps you are, compatibility and shared interests are essential for networking. Hence, networking will help you meet like-minded people or people who are compatible with you in terms of future ideas, life goals, aspirations, and other plans. Think about this:  being part of a network of people today means you could be a member of a joint hedge fund tomorrow. And don’t worry – it doesn’t mean you have to be from a wealthy family. More often than not, your intellect and the trust that your peers have in you will be enough. And that doesn’t even include the work opportunities, contacts and thought-sharing that goes on in a network like this over the years.

Networking leads to lifelong friendships

Keeping to yourself and not mustering up the courage to utter that “hello” can lead to dire consequences such as missing out on a business opportunity or a friendship of a lifetime. If you feel you are missing on opportunities, knowledge, or inspiration, some people are just very good supporters and listeners and can always be a helping hand in life. Many of the best friendships are formed in university and you can meet highly diverse and interesting people while networking who may change your perspective about things like work, ambition and even attitude to life. Motivation often comes not from within, but from the world that surrounds you.

The point is – networking can catapult your career in ways you didn’t imagine before going to business school, so don’t only embrace it, pursue it!

Much like “networking”, there are many terms in the MBA dictionary that might feel awkwardly different and out-of-context, or have entirely different connotations.

10 Important Benefits of Networking

Most of us recognize that networking is beneficial to our careers. Yet for some reason, we only think of its benefits when we are job hunting, but connecting with other professionals can help with every aspect of career development so don’t just reach out to other professionals in times of crisis; rather invest in these relationships throughout your career.

  1. Exchange Fresh Ideas

Most of us try to stay up to date with changes in our fields either through continuing our education or via reading up on industry news, but there’s a wealth of knowledge out there which you can gain access to by simply talking to other professionals in your industry.

Being on the receiving end of these fresh ideas allows you to introduce new practices in your workplace and win points with your boss. What’s more, it helps you remain on top of changes in the industry which not only helps you remain employed but is also a great first step in professional growth.

  1. Opens Doors to New Opportunities

Precisely because networking makes you more visible, it also opens new doors. From getting approached by recruiters about job opportunities, to getting noticed by people who would like to work with you on a freelance basis, you never know when an opportunity that can advance your career will present itself.

It’s important to understand that opportunities not only present themselves in the form of new jobs, but they can also mean meeting an important person in the industry that can change the course of your career, or being given the chance to start your own business.

  1. Expands Your Support Network

Another benefit is that it helps you build a support network that can assist you at every stage of your career. Let’s say that you are interviewing with a company; in an open network there will be someone who’s gone through the same process in the past which means that they can give you advice and tips on how to conduct yourself and what to expect.

The is true when you are trying to approach a new client. An open network can mean getting tips on what the client likes and what the best tactic to approach is.

  1. Boosts Your Self-Esteem

It may not be the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about networking benefits, but the boost to your self-esteem is something to consider. Knowing people, being asked about your opinions and ideas and getting asked to introduce people can be quite the social thrill, and it’s exactly what you need especially if you are an introvert who’s looking to advance themselves in a cut-throat business environment.

There are many methods and techniques to get over your initial shyness and actually start talking to people, but the important thing to remember is that it can be done on your own terms. Networking is not like entering a high-school cafeteria, it’s a lot more grown-up and it’s something anyone can achieve as long as they set their mind to it.

  1. Influence Things Positively

Sometimes all our careers need is an influencer who can help things go our way and that’s what a professional network does a lot of the time. It puts in a good word and applies pressure whenever it’s necessary. It’s an aid in helping you achieve your goals, and this is precisely why taking active steps towards building and maintaining a network is essential.

  1. It Allows You to Help Others

One of the most important benefits of networking that people tend to overlook is that it allows you to help other people. Granted, our motives in the professional world are rarely altruistic, but helping someone else with their career goals can be truly rewarding. Think of helping someone get their first job for example or putting in a good word to help someone get the promotion they’ve been after for the past two years.

What’s more, helping out a professional connection means that they’ll owe you one, which essentially means that by making introductions and helping other people connect, you are basically paving the path for your professional success.

  1. Makes You More Visible

What many professionals fail to understand is that the fight for visibility and standing apart from competition does not end once you get the job. In fact, making yourself more visible in the workplace is not only harder, but it also requires a lot more skill.

One of the advantages of networking is that it helps you become more visible because you become that one person that knows everyone and can be asked to make introductions or provide insight on clients, associates etc.

  1. Allows You to Express Opinions

Unlike your friends and family, a professional network is there to share opinions about the industry and exchange information. You can discuss industry related matters that you have been thinking about and ask for advice whenever you reach an impasse.

Having this kind of support system is one of the many advantages of networking and it’s why people are encouraged to take an active role in building their network. Not only can you share opinions about new trends with other professionals, but you can also share ideas about client projects (be careful not to overshare) and get some constructive feedback.

  1. Gets You Promoted

According to many studies, having an open network is a predictor of success and it ensures promotions and salary increases. Remember that connecting with other professionals gives you insight and makes you more visible, attributes that any boss values and looks to reward.

The key is to use your contacts wisely and to be smart about how you carry yourself in the workplace. Remember that if you’ve been contacted by a recruiter about a new position you can use the offer to leverage your current position. The chances are that your boss will learn to appreciate you more once they know that you are in demand.

  1. It Becomes Your Resource

You probably have tons of questions about your industry that not even Google can help you with. Talking to other professionals (and this includes colleagues) can help you resolve these questions.

Your professional network essentially functions as your resource because as the old adage goes two minds are better than one. Having these connections means that you can tap into their knowledge whenever you need to

A professional network can help your career in many ways including getting a job, promotion and even leveraging a raise. However, to achieve all of that you need to step outside your comfort zone and start connecting with other people in your field. Remember that you can’t just build the relationships; you need to maintain them by following and keeping up with all of your connections.

Why Is Networking Important.

Having a well-established network has become an important part of our lives. The easiest way to expand your network is to build on the relationships with people you know; family, friends, classmates, colleagues and acquaintance’s. Actually, we are all expanding our networks daily. Think about it, who would you ask if you needed and electrician, a plumber, a dry-Waller, a painter or landscaper? You would likely ask a family member, friend or close colleague if they know anyone they would recommend or maybe you would go to Angie’s List or the Better Business Bureau. These are all ways of networking.

Today networking has become an essential aspect of your job search. Even if you are well established in your job and have no plans of moving or advancing your career soon, networking has proven to be a valuable tool. Today, studies have shown that up to 80% of jobs are never advertised – they are filled by word of mouth. So it’s who you know and who knows you that matters. You must develop relationships and connections within your network to have more opportunities to advance your career.   Attending meetings and social events hosted by your professional association is a great way to connect with people in your field.

We all have thing were passionate about and special skills and interests. Volunteering is another great way to meet people and broaden your network. There are always ways to make connections with individuals in your professional organization and it could prove to be a great resource for advancing your career.

Definition of Networking

Networking refers to the total process of creating and using computer networks, with respect to hardware, protocols and software, including wired and wireless technology. It involves the application of theories from different technological fields, like IT, computer science and computer/electrical engineering.

A communication network is a group of things that are connected together using some form of talking or other communication to transfer information or data. The pattern by which things are connected is called a network topology. A television network, for example, connects television stations. Computer networks are numerous.

Standard operating procedures (SOP) in networking require selecting materials, like cabling and networking hardware, and establishing required telecommunication protocols, hardware and software.

The need for enhanced telecommunications has led to the advancement of multiple networking hardware technologies, like hubs, switches and routers. It has also spurred the invention of more creative networking mechanisms that use technologies and protocols, primarily in the mobile space.

About TedX/ TedTalks

Have you often wondered, who is “Ted”, why is he talking to everyone about things like like urban revitalization, renewable energy and virtual reality, and why is this guy making me look so dumb?

Well TED as it turns out is not a person at all, but is a non-profit organization dedicated to speading innovative ideas, discoveries through talks delivered by known speaker, celebrities etc. to live audiences at TED conferences.

TED is an acronym for technology, entertainment and design, although TED talks cover much more ground. TED talks are not only informative, but often inspirational. TED talks have surged in popularity because they are tailor-made for the social media age. Slickly produced videos of TED talks are posted for free online, and the best talks especially the ones with a strong personal and emotional storyline are shared all over YouTube, Facebook and Twitter.

In this world where everyone is  has access to media/ social media, Ted Ex events and conferences aim to make everyone aware of the ideas that are worth spreading and making them known.

These are the videos that we have the privilege of watching as social media is more than just a source of information it has turned into a lifestyle. The speaker’s tech us through their life experiences sustenance, humble problem solving, how to keep it together, personal development etc.

They have a number of topic related your choice of interest such as Technology, science, communication,  Child development, activism, Business, Personal Growth, Design, health, Nature, etc.,

You’re most certainly met with an intellectual adrenaline rush, like the feeling that rips through you after a significant accomplishment.  Except this time, the thrill is triggered by the imagination and not the act.  How TED and its TEDx licensees manage to consistently produce that effect on people, is one of the many intriguing things to learn after hearing the TED’s leader Chris Anderson and researching the TEDx phenomenon Speak.

Brilliant minds are not always the best public speakers. But in the TED universe, even the world’s biggest nerds are able to strut on stage and tell fiercely compelling stories about incredibly complex subjects. Where does TED find these innovative thinkers, researchers and activists who are also inspiring motivational speakers?

The short answer: It doesn’t. TED curator Chris Anderson hand-picks every featured speaker at the twice-yearly TED conferences in Long Beach, California. Some of these individuals are seasoned performers, presenters and storytellers, but most of them are more comfortable in a secluded research lab or behind their laptops.

In an article Anderson outlined the process for creating an unforgettable TED talk. It begins six to nine months before the conference with what Anderson calls “framing the story,” which means finding a clear starting and ending point for the talk.

It can be tremendously difficult for an expert in a niche field like robotics or prison reform to give a talk that’s accessible and engaging to 1,400 conference attendees, let alone a worldwide audience online. But the basics of giving a good TED talk apply to any speech you might have to give. Here are some of them [source: Anderson]:

  • Frame your story as a personal journey of discovery. A successful talk should feel like a “little miracle,” changing your audience’s perspective on the world. Rather than trying to cover everything, focus on one specific issue and give examples of your personal contribution.
  • Don’t use a teleprompter; instead, memorize your talk. Put key points on note cards if you’re afraid of forgetting something.
  • Make frequent eye contact. Pick five or six friendly looking people in different parts of the audience and look at them as you speak.
  • Don’t move around too much. People tend to sway from side to side when they’re nervous but it’s distracting. Your best bet is to stand still and use hand gestures when impressing a point.
  • Use visual aids like slides and videos sparingly and only to demonstrate highly visual concepts that cannot be easily explained.

TED speakers are encouraged to rehearse for the conference by delivering their talks at smaller gatherings before the big day arrives. With lots of preparation and help from TED staffers, even the most nervous speakers can give professional performances.

Importance of networking and how one can take actions to network

Networking is not just work talk; it’s a clever tool that can help you develop new ideas to make yourself and your business 10 times better.

When you network, you are interacting with others to exchange information and develop contacts that can help expedite your business. Take a look at these six valuable actions you can take to network.

Attend to Chamber of Commerce Meetings:

Attending to chamber of commerce meetings is a great networking opportunity. Going to these meetings will give you access to direct contact with other professionals in and/or outside of your business. Plus, you can see who your competitors are and also find potential prospects at these meetings. The Chamber of Commerce hosts a lot of programs and events. Therefore, attending to these programs and events can help you build lots of experiences. It can also be a type of resource. For example, if you are going through a struggle in your business, you can possibly find another professional that is going through the same. After talking it over amongst the both of you, it may bring you to a valid solution.

Be part of different businesses:

A big mistake you want to avoid is sticking to your profession. For example, if you profession/business is journalism, you don’t just want to network with journalists. You should reach out to others such as producers, photographers, or entrepreneurs. Having knowledge from different businesses will make you wiser because you are getting fed different knowledge from different businesses rather than just mastering one. Plus you never know if you’ll ever run into the needs of their business.

Be active in your community:

Being active in your community can get you connected to the right person, believe it or not. Learning and talking to people in your community can bring you to resourceful connections or even clients. When you’re active in your community you get to learn more about peoples and they get to know about you. Getting to know you is triumph because you and your business will gain great reputation. Once you’ve gained better reputation you will have better authority because people will know you and will gain your trust. This is a good thing because now they will see you as a friend and not a stranger.

Join Facebook groups:

Another smart networking tool are joining groups on Facebook. Joining different groups on Facebook can teach you something new you can incorporate to your business. In these groups you can ask questions, meet new people, post about events, and contribute with others who are interested in what you are. You can also create your own group to chat and connect with others to get more feedback and make your business stronger.

Go to events:

Going to events such as festivals, exhibits, and expos are a great way to networks. Think about it? People from all over are going there that are related in a way to what you are interested in, that’s why they are going. Connecting with these people is huge to your advantage. Perhaps you have something in mind but don’t know the solution to it, or don’t know whom to contact. There is a high chance that at one of these events you will find someone that knows the answer to your idea or knows an individual that can share a contact with you.

Build rapport:

Before going out and talking to people you need to understand how to build rapport. Building rapport is key because you want the other person you’re meeting to feel comfortable. The first time you meet a person you should build a relationship so you can continue to connect with this individual. To build a relationship you want to start by greeting them in a friendly way. Also, show interest, and give back positive and truthful feedback. You want to make them your friend not just a business contact. Once you have developed socializing skills you’re ready to go out and network.

Now that you learned a few networking actions to take in person and online it’s your time to take action. Who knows, maybe networking will increase your ROI dramatically.