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Recommended books

The dramatic growth in practical applications for machine learning over the last ten years has been accompanied by many important developments in the underlying algorithms and techniques. For example, Bayesian methods have grown from a specialist niche to become mainstream, while graphical models have emerged as a general framework for describing and applying probabilistic techniques. The practical applicability of Bayesian methods has been greatly enhanced by the development of a range of approximate inference algorithms such as variational Bayes and expectation propagation, while new models based on kernels have had a significant impact on both algorithms and applications.

This completely new textbook reflects these recent developments while providing a comprehensive introduction to the fields of pattern recognition and machine learning. It is aimed at advanced undergraduates or first-year PhD students, as well as researchers and practitioners. No previous knowledge of pattern recognition or machine learning concepts is assumed. Familiarity with multivariate calculus and basic linear algebra is required, and some experience in the use of probabilities would be helpful though not essential as the book includes a self-contained introduction to basic probability theory.

link: https://www.springer.com/gp/book/9780387310732

Information theory and inference, taught together in this exciting textbook, lie at the heart of many important areas of modern technology – communication, signal processing, data mining, machine learning, pattern recognition, computational neuroscience, bioinformatics and cryptography. The book introduces theory in tandem with applications. Information theory is taught alongside practical communication systems such as arithmetic coding for data compression and sparse-graph codes for error-correction. Inference techniques, including message-passing algorithms, Monte Carlo methods and variational approximations, are developed alongside applications to clustering, convolutional codes, independent component analysis, and neural networks. Uniquely, the book covers state-of-the-art error-correcting codes, including low-density-parity-check codes, turbo codes, and digital fountain codes – the twenty-first-century standards for satellite communications, disk drives, and data broadcast. Richly illustrated, filled with worked examples and over 400 exercises, some with detailed solutions, the book is ideal for self-learning, and for undergraduate or graduate courses. It also provides an unparalleled entry point for professionals in areas as diverse as computational biology, financial engineering and machine learning.

link: https://www.cambridge.org/nl/academic/subjects/computer-science/pattern-recognition-and-machine-learning/information-theory-inference-and-learning-algorithms

This textbook offers a comprehensive and self-contained introduction to the field of machine learning, based on a unified, probabilistic approach. The coverage combines breadth and depth, offering necessary background material on such topics as probability, optimization, and linear algebra as well as discussion of recent developments in the field, including conditional random fields, L1 regularization, and deep learning. The book is written in an informal, accessible style, complete with pseudo-code for the most important algorithms. All topics are copiously illustrated with color images and worked examples drawn from such application domains as biology, text processing, computer vision, and robotics. Rather than providing a cookbook of different heuristic methods, the book stresses a principled model-based approach, often using the language of graphical models to specify models in a concise and intuitive way. Almost all the models described have been implemented in a MATLAB software package–PMTK (probabilistic modeling toolkit)–that is freely available online.

link: https://www.amazon.com/Machine-Learning-Probabilistic-Perspective-Computation/dp/0262018020

Recommended review articles

Machine Learning (ML) is one of the most exciting and dynamic areas of modern research and application. The purpose of this review is to provide an introduction to the core concepts and tools of machine learning in a manner easily understood and intuitive to physicists. The review begins by covering fundamental concepts in ML and modern statistics such as the bias–variance tradeoff, overfitting, regularization, generalization, and gradient descent before moving on to more advanced topics in both supervised and unsupervised learning. Topics covered in the review include ensemble models, deep learning and neural networks, clustering and data visualization, energy-based models (including MaxEnt models and Restricted Boltzmann Machines), and variational methods. Throughout, we emphasize the many natural connections between ML and statistical physics. A notable aspect of the review is the use of Python Jupyter notebooks to introduce modern ML/statistical packages to readers using physics-inspired datasets (the Ising Model and Monte-Carlo simulations of supersymmetric decays of proton–proton collisions). We conclude with an extended outlook discussing possible uses of machine learning for furthering our understanding of the physical world as well as open problems in ML where physicists may be able to contribute.

link: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0370157319300766

By combining metal nodes with organic linkers we can potentially synthesize millions of possible metal–organic frameworks (MOFs). The fact that we have so many materials opens many exciting avenues but also create new challenges. We simply have too many materials to be processed using conventional, brute force, methods. In this review, we show that having so many materials allows us to use big-data methods as a powerful technique to study these materials and to discover complex correlations. The first part of the review gives an introduction to the principles of big-data science. We show how to select appropriate training sets, survey approaches that are used to represent these materials in feature space, and review different learning architectures, as well as evaluation and interpretation strategies. In the second part, we review how the different approaches of machine learning have been applied to porous materials. In particular, we discuss applications in the field of gas storage and separation, the stability of these materials, their electronic properties, and their synthesis. Given the increasing interest of the scientific community in machine learning, we expect this list to rapidly expand in the coming years.

link: https://pubs.acs.org/doi/10.1021/acs.chemrev.0c00004

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