This event is being hosted by the UJ Nuclear Research Centre and the Data Science Across Disciplines Research Group, both in the Faculty of Engineering and the Built Environment.

Learn the Math Behind Neural Networks!

You have definitely heard of artificial neural networks. But do you know how they work? Do you know their components and the mathematical operations performed backstage?
DATE: 27 March 2023
The course is designed and delivered by Prof Claire David (York University, ATLAS Experiment)
Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning is extremely popular and growing in many areas: academia, industry, not to mention our day-to-day life. It is thus important for scientists of all levels to get a basics understanding of the main algorithms. This day-workshop will explain to you step by step the mathematical operations behind a simple neural network (two morning sessions). In the afternoon session, we will code together a small neural network in python… by hand! That is to say, without any dedicated Machine Learning libraries! Don’t worry: it will be guided. After this course, you will have the foundations to explore more complicated neural network architectures and above all, you will not say “It’s Magical” but rather “It’s Mathematical!” PREREQUISITES From undergrads to emeritus professors, everyone is welcome. Bring a pen, some paper as you will actually do some of the calculations yourself (not much, promised) and a sense of humour.
If you already know about neural networks but are curious about a basic implementation in python, you can only join the afternoon session.
If you are interested in the afternoon session but cannot make it, I can give you the pythonic neural network exercise and later share the solutions with you per email upon request.
09:00 – 10:30 Theory behind Neural Networks Tutorial Rooms (6th Floor), UJ on Empire. Corner Empire & Napier Roads, Richmond, Johannesburg.
11:00 – 12:30 Theory behind Neural Networks Tutorial Rooms (6th Floor), UJ on Empire. Corner Empire & Napier Roads, Richmond, Johannesburg.
14:00 – 16:00 Programming Tutorial Rooms (6th Floor), UJ on Empire. Corner Empire & Napier Roads, Richmond, Johannesburg.
16:00 – 17:30 DRINKS & SNACKS 8th Floor, UJ on Empire Corner Empire & Napier Roads, Richmond, Johannesburg.
Please RSVP before 23 March 2023 to Prof Charis Harley ( You may choose which session you would like to attend, so please specify whether you will join us for Session 1, Session 2, or both. We will only be able to accommodate 20 individuals – acceptance will be on a first come, first serve basis. Preference will be given to those attending both sessions.

DISCLAIMER: All events taking place in this venue may be photographed and video recorded for marketing, social media and media purposes. By attending this event, you grant the University of Johannesburg permission to use and publish any recorded material

March 27, 2023

Disclaimer: The University of Johannesburg encourages academic debate and discussion that are conducted in a manner that upholds respectful interaction, safety of all involved, and freedom of association as enshrined in the law, the Constitution, and within the boundaries of the University policies. The views expressed during events are expressed in a personal capacity and do not necessarily reflect the views of the University of Johannesburg.

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