Heroes of Machine Learning – Top Experts and Researchers you should follow

He is a computer scientist, known for his work around artificial neural networks and deep learning.

His lifetime goal is to build a self-improving Artificial Intelligence smarter than himself.

He, along with some of his students, published sophisticated versions of long short-term memory (LSTM), an improved version of recurrent neural networks.

His research work also included the speeding up of convolutional neural networks using GPUs.


Schmidhuber is the recipient of numerous awards, author of over 350 peer-reviewed papers, and Chief Scientist of the company NNAISENSE, which aims at building the first practical general-purpose AI.

He is also advising various governments on AI strategies.


Terry Sejnowski Terry is a professor at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies and the author of The Deep Learning Revolution (MIT Press).

He is one of the pioneers of neural networks back in the 1980s.

Along with Geoffrey Hinton, he demonstrated that simple neural networks could be useful and made to learn certain tasks.

He is the co-inventor of the Boltzmann machine along with Geoffery Hinton and contributed immensely in solving problems related to speech and vision.

Terry is also the co-creator of the algorithm for Independent Component Analysis that has been widely used in machine learning and signal processing.

He received the Hebb Prize for his contributions to learning algorithms by the International Neural Network Society in 1999.

He also received IEEE’s Neural Network Pioneer Award in 2002.

In 2017, he was elected to the National Academy of Inventors.


David M.

Blei David is a professor of Statistics and Computer Science at Columbia University.

His research interests lie in topic models, probabilistic modeling, and approximate Bayesian inference.

He was one of the original developers of the popular topic modeling technique, Latent Dirichlet Allocation (LDA), along with Andrew Ng and Michael I.


His research work revolves around recommendation systems, neuroscience, computational social sciences, and natural language.

He is the recipient of the ICML Test of Time Award (for “Dynamic Topic Models”) 2016, the Presidential Award for Outstanding Teaching, and many more.

Apart from that, he has published over 100 papers.

This lecture by Blei on Topic Models is a gem.

I have already bookmarked it.


Daphne Koller Daphne Koller is a Professor in the Department of Computer Science at Stanford University and one of the founders of Coursera.

She received both her bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

Then she went on to complete her Ph.


at Stanford in 1993.

Her areas of interest are computer vision and computational biology.

She even co-authored a book on probabilistic graphical models along with Nir Friedman.

After leaving Coursera in 2016, she founded a drug discovery startup called Insitro The online education model of Stanford was her idea that she initiated in 2010.

It has led to the formation of the open-for-all online courses that are being offered by Stanford.

She was awarded the Arthur Samuel Thesis Award in 1994, Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE) in 1999 and in 2011 was elected as a member of the National Academy of Engineering, an American non-governmental organization.


Zoubin Ghahramani Zoubin is a professor of Information Engineering at the University of Cambridge.

His research interests include Bayesian approaches to machine learning, statistics, information retrieval, bioinformatics, and artificial intelligence.

He completed his Ph.


from the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, under Michael I.

Jordan and Tomaso Poggio.

In 2014, he co-founded a startup, Geometric Intelligence that focusses on object or scenario recognition.

Later, Uber acquired Geometric Intelligence and Zoubin joined Uber’s A.


Labs in 2016.

He has published over 250 research papers and was elected Fellow of the Royal Society (FRS) in 2015.


Sebastian Thrun Another very popular name on our list.

Sebastian Thrun is currently the CEO of Kitty Hawk Corporation and the co-founder of Udacity.

But we’re sure you’ve heard his name before all these things.

Sebastian founded the Google X Lab and Google’s self-driving team.

He led the project from the start and is widely considered a leader when it comes to autonomous vehicles.

He has developed multiple autonomous robotic systems in his career.

As you might expect from a person of Sebastian’s stature, he is deeply integrated into the academic side of machine learning as well.

He is the Adjunct Professor at Stanford University and at Georgia Tech.

Sebastian was named one of ‘Brilliant 5’ by Popular Science magazine in 2005.

He has also been awarded the Max-Planck-Research Award (2011).


Yaser S.

Abu-Mostafa If you’ve gone through Andrew Ng’s videos, there’s a good chance you would have come across Yaser Abu-Mostafa’s lectures too.

His ability to break down complex topics into easy-to-understand bytes is really incredible.

There’s a lot each of us could learn from him.

Professor Yaser is a Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at the California Institute of Technology.

He co-founded the most renowned machine learning conference for researchers – NIPS, or the Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems.

He was awarded the Richard Feynman award prize for excellence in teaching (which is no surprise to anyone who has seen his talk about machine learning) and has numerous technical publications.


Peter Norvig Peter Norvig is among the godfathers of modern-day AI.

There are no two ways about it – he has inspired the current work that is happening around the world in machine learning.

We owe him a huge debt of gratitude.

He is currently the Director of Research at Google.

Before his current role, Peter was head of Google’s core search algorithms group, and of NASA Ames’s Computational Sciences Division.

He won the NASA Exceptional Achievement Award in 2001.

Peter is also a bestselling author and has written numerous books on the field of artificial intelligence.

We loved his article titled ‘Teach Yourself Programming in Ten Years” where he put forth an impassioned argument against introductory books that promised to teach you programming in one go.

A cool fact about Peter Norvig – he was employee #8 at Junglee!.  14.

Trevor Hastie Does the name sound familiar?.Trevor Hastie is the co-author of the popular books “Introduction to Statistical Learning” and “Elements of Statistical Learning”.

Professor Trevor is well known for his contributions to the field of applied statistics (published over 200 articles and written over 5 books in this field).

He is currently the Professor of Mathematical Sciences and the Professor of Statistics at Stanford University.

He has a wonderful way of engaging with the audience and making statistics and machine learning concepts fun to learn.

Professor Trevor is a member of some of the most highly distinguished societies in academia, such as the Royal Statistical Society, American Statistical Association, National Academy of Sciences, among others.


Robert Tibshirani Have you heard of LASSO regression?.Well – you should.

It’s an integral part of a data scientist’s toolbox.

The most influential person involved in creating and developing this LASSO method?.Robert Tibshirani!.He is currently a Professor in the Departments of Statistics, Health Research, and Policy at Stanford University.

He has recently been working extensively in the healthcare field, developing statistical tools to analyze complex genomic datasets.

Professor Robert is also a popular author.

In fact, he is the other co-author of the two books we mentioned under Traveor Hastie’s profile – Introduction to Statistical Learning and Elements of Statistics Learning.

Like Trevor Hastie, he is also a member of prestigious academic societies, such as the Institute of Mathematical Statistics, the American Statistical Association, Royal Society of Canada, among others.


Anil K.

Jain Anil K.

Jain is a University Distinguished Professor in the Computer Science and Engineering Department at Michigan State University.

He is an IIT-Kanpur graduate in electrical engineering.

Professor Anil is known for his contributions in the fields of computer vision, pattern recognition, and biometric recognition and is a highly cited machine learning Google Scholar profile.

He has been awarded a plethora of awards based on his work in computer science and machine learning.

He received the W.

Wallace McDowell Award in 2007 from the IEEE Computer Society, the Humboldt Research Award, among various others.

He also received the best paper awards from the IEEE Transactions on Neural Networks (1996) and the Pattern Recognition journal (1987, 1991, and 2005).


Jitendra Malik Jitendra Malik is currently a Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences at the University of California, Berkeley.

He also plays a pivotal role at Facebook as part of their AI Research division.

Jitendra is another pioneer in the computer vision field.

He has mentored over 60 Ph.


students and has been a part of well-known algorithms and concepts in machine learning, such as high dynamic range imaging, shape context, and R-CNN.

The latter, R-CNN, is a popular type of neural network.

Per Wikipedia, “he was awarded the Longuet-Higgins Prize in 2007 and 2008 and the Helmholtz Prize twice in 2015 for contributions that have stood the test of time (awarded to papers after 10 years of publication)”.


Vladimir Vapnik Vladimir Vapnik is one of the primary developers of the Vapnik-Chervonenkis theory of statistical learning.

But he’s made a name of himself in the machine learning community for co-creating one of the most popular classification algorithms.

Support Vector Machines (SVMs)!.Vladimir is currently involved at Facebook AI Research where he is working with, you guessed it, Yann LeCun.

His publications have been cited close to 180,000 times according to Wikipedia, an astonishing number.

Vladimir is also the co-creator of the support vector clustering algorithm.

The number of awards he was won is staggering and too long to list here.

Some notable ones are the Gabor Award in 2005, the Neural Networks Pioneer Award in 2010, and the Benjamin Franklin Medal in Computer an Cognitive Science in 2012.


Ian Goodfellow If you’re remotely interested in computer vision, you should know the name – Ian Goodfellow.

He is best known for inventing Generative Adversarial Networks (GANs).

GANs have become ubiquitous in deep learning and are popularly used at companies like Facebook and Google.

Ian is currently a Director of Machine Learning at Apple.

He is a researcher at heart and has previously worked as a research scientist at Google Brain and OpenAI.

Ian’s list of mentors is enviable.

He completed his MS in computer science under Andrew Ng and his Ph.


under Yoshua Bengio and Aaron Courville.

  End Notes This is by no means an exhaustive list.

That’s primarily the reason we put a framework in place before we created the list.

We have been inspired by these heroes of machine learning and continue to look up to their work every day we work with their algorithms!.Who is your favorite expert from this list?.Or is there anyone we should have included?.Let’s discuss in the comments section below!.You can also read this article on Analytics Vidhyas Android APP Share this:Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window) Related Articles (adsbygoogle = window.

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