Artificial Neural Networks ( ANN )

So what’s an Artificial Neural Network ?

Artificial Neural Networks ( ANNs ) are relatively crude electronic models based on the neural stucture of the brain. As the brain basically learns from experience, It is natural proof that some problems that are beyond the scope of current computers are indeed solvable by small energy efficient packages. This brain modeling also promises a less technical way to develop machine solutions. This new approach to computing also provides a more graceful degradation during system overload than its more traditional counterparts. These biological inspired methods of computing are thought to be next major advancement in computer industry.


Most neurons in the brain are connected to several thousand others.

So how does it work?

An artificial neural network is simulated with software. In other words, we use a digital computer to run a simulation of a bunch of heavily interconnected little mini-programs which stand in for the neurons of our simulated neural network. Data enters the ANN and has some operation performed on it by the first “neuron,” that operation being determined by how the neuron happens to be programmed to react to data with those specific attributes. It’s then passed on to the next neuron, which is chosen in a similar way, so that another operation can be chosen and performed. There are a finite number of “layers” of these computational neurons, and after moving through them all, an output is produced.


Natural Neuron


An Artificial Neuron


So where is it used?

  • Google uses an ANN to learn how to better target “watch next” suggestions after YouTube videos.
  • The scientists at the Large Hadron Collider turned to ANNs to sift the results of their collisions and pull the signature of just one particle out of the larger storm.
  • Shipping companies use them to minimize route lengths over a complex scattering of destinations.

Google’s new Smart Reply feature uses artificial neural networks to come up with appropriate responses to email messages.

“That first decision is made by an artificial neural network very much like the ones we use for spam classification and separating promotional emails from personal ones,” says Greg Corrado, senior research scientist on the Google Brain Team. “Our network has been trained to predict whether this is an email someone might write a brief reply to.” For the full article on Wired (

So concluding this blog we’ve put some light on ANNs and also given a brief information on it. If you like this blog and would like some more related topics do leave a comment!



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