How to Start Learning Deep Learning

Due to the recent achievements of artificial neural networks across many different tasks (such as face recognition, object detection and Go), deep learning has become extremely popular. This post aims to be a starting point for those interested in learning more about it.

If you already have a basic understanding of linear algebra, calculus, probability and programming: I recommend starting with Stanford’s CS231n. The course notes are comprehensive and written well. The slides for each lesson are also available, and even though the accompanying videos were removed from the official site, re-uploads are quite easy to find online.

If you dont have the relevant math background: There is an incredible amount of free material online that can be used to learn the required math knowledge. Gilbert Strang’s course on linear algebra is a great introduction to the field. For the other subjects, edX has courses from MIT on both calculus and probability.

If you are interested in learning more about machine learning: Andrew Ng’s Coursera class is a popular choice as a first class in machine learning. There are other great options available such as Yaser Abu-Mostafa’s machine learning course which focuses much more on theory than the Coursera class but it is still relevant for beginners. Knowledge in machine learning isn’t really a prerequisite to learning deep learning, but it does help. In addition, learning classical machine learning and not only deep learning is important because it provides a theoretical background and because deep learning isn’t always the correct solution…