What is Convolutional Neural Networks?
One of my past projects was a handwriting math equation editor.
For it I needed a handwriting recognition library that should recognize a wide range of mathematical symbols. I could not find a recognizer like this; the solution was to write my own. I quickly wrote a DTW algorithm (a viterbi matcher) using a couple of sample of my own writing as templates. For the immediate purpose of a demonstration it was enough, but my interest was piqued and I spent a long time looking at various algorithms and their strengths and weaknesses.
After a time I decided to investigate Convolutional Neural Networks. They are very roughly inspired from the way the animal vision works. The authority on the subject is Yann LeCun who introduced them in the 90’s. Some years ago, Patrice Simard from Microsoft worked on some newer implementations. I could not find the actual code for any of their articles (a much too often encountered situation in computer science). As luck has it, there is a nice article on codeproject by Mike O’Neill about his implementation of CNN, and the best part is that in this case the code is available. The problem with O’neill-s code is that is quite slow; the code is not written for speed and it makes heavy use of pointers to describe the CNN structure.
Source: software and other stuff
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