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The effect of activation function choice on the performance of convolutional neural networks

Wang et al. | Sep 15, 2023

The effect of activation function choice on the performance of convolutional neural networks
Image credit: Tara Winstead

With the advance of technology, artificial intelligence (AI) is now applied widely in society. In the study of AI, machine learning (ML) is a subfield in which a machine learns to be better at performing certain tasks through experience. This work focuses on the convolutional neural network (CNN), a framework of ML, applied to an image classification task. Specifically, we analyzed the performance of the CNN as the type of neural activation function changes.

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Predicting baseball pitcher efficacy using physical pitch characteristics

Oberoi et al. | Jan 11, 2024

Predicting baseball pitcher efficacy using physical pitch characteristics
Image credit: Antoine Schibler

Here, the authors sought to develop a new metric to evaluate the efficacy of baseball pitchers using machine learning models. They found that the frequency of balls, was the most predictive feature for their walks/hits allowed per inning (WHIP) metric. While their machine learning models did not identify a defining trait, such as high velocity, spin rate, or types of pitches, they found that consistently pitching within the strike zone resulted in significantly lower WHIPs.

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A novel approach for early detection of Alzheimer’s disease using deep neural networks with magnetic resonance imaging

Ganesh et al. | Mar 20, 2022

A novel approach for early detection of Alzheimer’s disease using deep neural networks with magnetic resonance imaging

In the battle against Alzheimer's disease, early detection is critical to mitigating symptoms in patients. Here, the authors use a collection of MRI scans, layering with deep learning computer modeling, to investigate early stages of AD which can be hard to catch by human eye. Their model is successful, able to outperform previous models, and detected regions of interest in the brain for further consideration.

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Association of agenesis of the corpus callosum with epilepsy and anticonvulsant drug treatment

Steger et al. | Feb 21, 2023

Association of agenesis of the corpus callosum with epilepsy and anticonvulsant drug treatment
Image credit: Robina Weermeijer on Unsplash

Agenesis of the Corpus Callosum (ACC) is a birth defect where an infant’s corpus callosum, the structure linking the brain’s two hemispheres to allow interhemispheric communication, fails to develop in a typical manner during pregnancy. Existing research on the connection between ACC and epilepsy leaves significant gaps, due to the lack of focused investigation. One important gap is the degree to which ACC may impact the course of epilepsy treatment and outcomes. The present study was conducted to test the hypotheses that epilepsy is highly prevalent among individuals with ACC, and that those with both ACC and epilepsy have a lower response rate to anticonvulsant drugs than other patients treated with anticonvulsant drugs. A weighted average of epilepsy rates was calculated from a review of existing literature, which supported the hypothesis that epilepsy was more common among individuals with ACC (25.11%) than in the general population (1.2%). An empirical survey administered to 57 subjects or parents of subjects showed that rate of intractable epilepsy among study subjects with both ACC and epilepsy was substantially higher than the rate found in the general population, indicating that individuals with both conditions had a lower response rate to the anticonvulsant drugs. This study contributes novel results regarding the potential for concurrence of ACC and epilepsy to interfere with anticonvulsant drug treatment. We also discuss implications for how medical professionals may use the findings of this study to add depth to their treatment decisions.

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Predicting college retention rates from Google Street View images of campuses

Dileep et al. | Jan 02, 2024

Predicting college retention rates from Google Street View images of campuses
Image credit: Dileep et al. 2024

Every year, around 40% of undergraduate students in the United States discontinue their studies, resulting in a loss of valuable education for students and a loss of money for colleges. Even so, colleges across the nation struggle to discover the underlying causes of these high dropout rates. In this paper, the authors discuss the use of machine learning to find correlations between the built environment factors and the retention rates of colleges. They hypothesized that one way for colleges to improve their retention rates could be to improve the physical characteristics of their campus to be more pleasing. The authors used image classification techniques to look at images of colleges and correlate certain features like colors, cars, and people to higher or lower retention rates. With three possible options of high, medium, and low retention rates, the probability that their models reached the right conclusion if they simply chose randomly was 33%. After finding that this 33%, or 0.33 mark, always fell outside of the 99% confidence intervals built around their models’ accuracies, the authors concluded that their machine learning techniques can be used to find correlations between certain environmental factors and retention rates.

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Artificial Intelligence-Based Smart Solution to Reduce Respiratory Problems Caused by Air Pollution

Bhardwaj et al. | Dec 14, 2021

Artificial Intelligence-Based Smart Solution to Reduce Respiratory Problems Caused by Air Pollution

In this report, Bhardwaj and Sharma tested whether placing specific plants indoors can reduce levels of indoor air pollution that can lead to lung-related illnesses. Using machine learning, they show that plants improved overall indoor air quality and reduced levels of particulate matter. They suggest that plant-based interventions coupled with sensors may be a useful long-term solution to reducing and maintaining indoor air pollution.

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Can the nucleotide content of a DNA sequence predict the sequence accessibility?

Balachandran et al. | Mar 10, 2023

Can the nucleotide content of a DNA sequence predict the sequence accessibility?
Image credit: Warren Umoh

Sequence accessibility is an important factor affecting gene expression. Sequence accessibility or openness impacts the likelihood that a gene is transcribed and translated into a protein and performs functions and manifests traits. There are many potential factors that affect the accessibility of a gene. In this study, our hypothesis was that the content of nucleotides in a genetic sequence predicts its accessibility. Using a machine learning linear regression model, we studied the relationship between nucleotide content and accessibility.

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Model selection and optimization for poverty prediction on household data from Cambodia

Wong et al. | Sep 29, 2023

Model selection and optimization for poverty prediction on household data from Cambodia
Image credit: Paul Szewczyk

Here the authors sought to use three machine learning models to predict poverty levels in Cambodia based on available household data. They found teat multilayer perceptron outperformed the other models, with an accuracy of 87 %. They suggest that data-driven approaches such as these could be used more effectively target and alleviate poverty.

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Giving Teens a Voice: Sources of Stress for High School Students

Corson et al. | Sep 09, 2019

Giving Teens a Voice: Sources of Stress for High School Students

The authors investigate the negative effects stress has on teen mental and physical health. Through a survey, they give Virginia teens a voice in revising the Health and Physical Education curriculum to include a standards of learning (SOL). Notably they identify factors contributing to stress levels including homework level, amount of free and sleep time, parental pressure and family encouragement.

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