What is “machine learning”?

Looking at my posts so far, it seems that a little “What is … ?” series is emerging (“What is AGI?”, “What are conceptual spaces?”). Today I’d like to add another post to this series – this time about the term “machine learning” and about three different types of machine learning algorithms one can distinguish.

As already discussed earlier, “good old fashioned AI” is based on manually writing rules and having some sort of inference system that applies these rules in a given situation. Machine learning is more about discovering rules from a (usually quite large) number of examples.

One can distinguish three types of machine learning: supervised, unsupervised and semi-supervised.

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