Apr 2, 20206 min read
Co-founder at Ideamotive. Technological advisor and software consultant.
Machine intelligence has rapidly moved from experimental to applied technology, and the level of its adoption is growing steadily, also among small and medium businesses. 2020 is poised to be a landmark year for the development of AI and machine learning solutions, so it’s the right moment to tap into the unique opportunities they present.
According to industry research, while enterprises invest in ML primarily to reduce costs and reduce manual work, startups and small businesses harness the technology mainly to enhance customer-facing functions and gather insights that allow them to refine services, increase customer satisfaction and retention, and gain a competitive edge. Those benefits of machine learning (for more, see our free guide to AI) are up for grabs for your business, too.
A short answer is ‘Yes.’ However, the real question should be, whether it’s the most suitable choice for ML applications.
When implementing a machine learning project, a few significant factors come into play. First of all, the number of available code libraries, so pre-existing sets of code routines that may be reused in different applications. The more of them are available, the more streamlined the implementation.
A popular open-source library that enables the deployment of machine learning programs in the browser is TensorFlow.js. It allows running existing models in the browser, train ready models with your own data, and develop new machine learning models directly in the browser. Another commonly used library is Brain, which enables the creation and training of neural networks and loading them onto a browser, e.g., to recognize color contrast.
What Is Python?
Python is an open-source, general-purpose programming language, praised for high readability, productivity, and speed. Python is often used as a main backend language or an extension language for web applications written in other languages, and it is also a frequent choice when it comes to the development of automation, data mining, and machine learning platforms.
Examples of Python: Python is one of the official server-side languages used by Google; it is also used inside Instagram and Facebook infrastructures. Also, Quora, Netflix, and Spotify use it extensively, mainly to power their data analysis capabilities and backend services.
Is Python The Best For Machine Learning?
AI and machine learning development are fast-progressing, and there’s no shortage of their innovative applications in business. Some prominent examples include image classifiers, social media sentiment analytics, chatbots, predictive engines, or personalized recommendations (look here for more examples). To implement these tools and functionalities, data scientists, programmers and DevOps use a combination of programming languages, Python included.
For years, Python has been the language of choice for ML implementations. It provides a comprehensive library of packages with in-built functions that facilitate data analysis and processing, cleansing, modeling, visualization, and so on. These include TensorFlow, Keras, and Theano, all of which make it easy to implement various machine learning features. Many developers consider Python the preferred language for ML projects also because of its capability of interacting with other languages and platforms, and robust data handling capacity.
From a business standpoint, Python is used for machine learning projects for several reasons. First of all, it’s highly productive thanks to its design and has a ton of ready to use packages, which positively impacts the speed of implementation. Secondly, Python has a large community of developers and supporters. It’s estimated that there are more than 8 million Python coders around the world. This makes it easier to find people with the right skills to launch the project quickly. The extensive community support also enables daily code enhancements and regular creation of new libraries and packages that further accelerate the pace of development.
What is your existing technology stack? Which frameworks are your teams using? Aligning the programming language with the existing technology stack usually leads to faster and more streamlined development. Choose a language that best matches your current technology capabilities.
Although machine intelligence adoption continues to grow, AI and ML projects still involve some level of complexity and require expert know-how. The good news is that now, you don’t have to build your own arsenal of data analytics expertise to tap into the value of machine learning for your business. If you don’t want to grapple with ML alone, hire a dedicated, ready-to-deploy tech team who will help you choose the best programming language for your needs, and build innovative solutions that will keep your company ahead of the game.
An increasing number of businesses are experimenting with AI and machine learning, incorporating data analytics and automation into their long-term business strategy.
Before you start your first ML project, choose the programming language that will best match your requirements.
One of the most popular languages in the world, used mainly for creating dynamic web pages.
It allows using ML anywhere, e.g., in wearables or mobile apps.
It offers a powerful, open-source Tensorflow.js library that makes it possible to define, test, and run ML models in web browsers.
JS has the largest community of developers of all languages, which makes it easier to find the right team to work on your project.
The number of available data science packages and built-in functions is small when compared to Python.
The community of JS developers with specific data science expertise is still emerging.
Python for Machine Learning: pros and cons
A versatile, multi-paradigm programming language that is used in the backend of many large and popular applications today.
Python offers a wide choice of libraries and in-built functions for data analytics, scientific computing, and machine learning.
The world’s largest companies such as Google, Facebook, Microsoft, or Netflix use it in their Machine Learning projects.
It’s one of the fastest-growing programming languages, and its use in machine learning is extensive.
It is a highly readable, multi-paradigm language that supports productivity and speed of development.
Python is not inherent in the mobile environment.
As always, there are a number of aspects to consider before reaching the final decision. To get support, consult a trusted team of technology experts with previous experience in implementing AI and ML projects in both languages.