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What to try Next when stuck in Machine Learning Problem?

People waste a lot of time if don't know the proper way of dealing with machine learning problem.  Here is a very good and quick rule of thumb by Andrew Ng that can rescue any machine learning trainer if he/she is not getting improvement in model. 

First check whether model is suffering from 'High Bias' or 'High Variation' then try any of the following method to fix the issue. It is useful to plot a learning curve to understand if there is a high bias or high variance problem.

 

  •  Get more training examples --> to fix High Variance
  • Try smaller set of features --> to fix High Variance
  • Try getting additional features --> to fix High Bias
  • Try adding polynomial features (i.e higher order features) --> to fix High Bias
  • Try decreasing lambda (i.e regularization factor) --> to fix High Bias
  • Try increasing lambda (i,e regularization factor) --> to fix High Variance


Thanks Andrew Ng, 

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