Programming Collective Intelligence: Building Smart Web 2.0 Applications Paperback – 26 Aug 2007
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..you should buy this book.... It's well written manual that'll handily expand your repetoire.
-- London Perl M(ou)ngers, london.pm.org, December 2007
About the Author
Toby Segaran is the author of Programming Collective Intelligence, a very popular O'Reilly title. He was the founder of Incellico, a biotech software company later acquired by Genstruct. He currently holds the title of Data Magnate at Metaweb Technologies and is a frequent speaker at technology conferences.
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Top Customer Reviews
The difference between it and other texts on this machine learning, is how accessible it is, and how apt the data sets it chooses are. Machine learning is an active area of research, and I was surprised that this book even covers kernel methods.
It generates a real appetite to learn more about the theory of machine learning: Which you will need, as most machine learning text books are mathematically tough going and dry.
I only wish I could skip the day job for a week and study this book from cover to cover.
Having dredged my way through similar books in the past, I wasn't expecting too much, but Programming Collective Intelligence is remarkable. I found this book gripping; completing each example was very rewarding, and has now got me hooked on learning more.
I ended up working my way through the entire book, and really feel that it was time well spent. I now feel that I actually understand the concepts and algorithms surrounding machine learning/AI/data mining, and as a bonus have become familiar with a huge number of web 2.0 APIs.
The source code is almost impeccable. Most programming books falter on sloppy and/or incomplete code, but Programming Collective Intelligence is well explained and has the complete Python code written in the book, as well as being available for download. I was able to do every example without any major problems, despite having never used the Python language before.
Well written & diagrammed, with good examples and wonderful explanations: this a fantastic book, and to be highly recommended.
I actually found this book more useful than the general Python book as the use of examples is a much better way of learning (in my opinion). The examples introduced get more and more complex through the book which then forces you to learn about those programs in order to understand what they've done.
The fact that it exposes you to live web based data from the beginning is very useful indeed. My only wish would be that the formatting would be a bit clear. Python seems to thrive on using indentation rather than brackets and it can be difficult to see exactly which level of indentation is being used.
You need a ruler to use it!
The intended audience for this book are developers with no background in machine learning but wanting to use machine learning techniques in their projects. Newcomers to the topic of machine learning may find the book useful but those with a background in maths or machine learning will likely find the book to have a somewhat limited appeal.
Terms and assumptions are used without explanation, important issues are skimmed over lightening speed yet simple issues are repeated ad-nausem.
A better title might be "A light skim over Collective Intelligence for Python Programmers", but anything else is seriously overselling the confusing and frustratingly sparse content.
Although Python based I found the algorithms clear enough to translate into Erlang without much issue and if you have any functional exposure this should not be difficult.
I'm math phobic but this book really generated my interest with its clarity and applicative nature to everyday problems.
I took this over the competing CI book as that was heavily Java oriented - why do some people mangle Java to any possible task?
The elegance of Python to AI problems really shone through here!
Great Book and not too long either - but certainly not short on knowledge!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
My first introduction to both Python and Machine Learning. One of my most used books. It is so worn I may have to get another copy which I would do without hesitation.Published 17 months ago by Robert Hodgson
perfect and exactly what I wanted. My interests are with AI and wireless networks and algorithms and software languages. This is exampled in python but covers much more ground. Read morePublished 23 months ago by Misss. J. E. X. N. Read
The book is very short, concise, cryptic sometimes and it contains lots of mistakes (in the code and typos in the text content).Published on 10 Jun. 2013 by Michele Filannino
A few people complained about there beeing too little maths in the book, and I would agree. Instead the author explains or at least tries to explain by example and uses python code... Read morePublished on 24 July 2011 by Md Sykora
Most of the similar material on the web is difficult to read and learn with heavy mathematic bias but not this one. Very nice examples with complete Python-implementation. Read morePublished on 13 Sept. 2010 by J.Makelainen
It is useful for providing insight into various algo's and does include a lot of sample code. The sample code is just that and not something you could copy and paste, tweak and use... Read morePublished on 24 Aug. 2010 by richardyeo
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