## Workshop on Neural Networks at the 2015 Visual Studio Live Conference

Visual Studio Live is one of my favorite conferences for software developers who use Microsoft technologies. I will be giving an all-day workshop on neural networks at the upcoming VS Live event, March 16-20, 2015 in Las Vegas. See http://www.vslive.com. VS Live is run by 1105 Media, one of the most respected names in technology media.

In the workshop, I will teach attendees everything they need to know in order to create neural networks using the C# language and the Visual Studio tool. I’ll assume that attendees have intermediate level coding skill but I won’t assume they know anything at all about neural networks.

Some of the workshop topics are:

Overview – What is a neural network?
Feed-Forward – The NN input-process-output mechanism
Normalization – Preparing Data for NN analysis
Back-Propagation – Training a NN to make predictions
Particle Swarms – An advanced training technique

Each topic will have a complete, production quality demo program to experiment with, and a short quiz to test understanding of the topic. Here are a couple example quiz questions:

```1. Which of the following is the best way to encode a binary
predictor variable?

A. False = 0, True = 1
B. False = 1, True = 0
C. False = -1, True = +1
D. False = 0, True = 9

3. Suppose you are trying to predict a single numeric value, such
as a person's credit score, based on predictor variables such as
annual income, age, and so on. This type of problem is called
neural network regression (instead of classification).
Why is softmax not used for NN regression?

A. Because there's only one output node,
softmax would always return 0.
B. Because there's only one output node,
softmax would always try to divide by 0.
C. Because there's only one output node,
softmax would always return 1.
D. None of the above - softmax works fine for NN regression
problems with one output node.
```

If you want to get up to speed with neural networks, consider attending the 2015 Visual Studio Live conference in Las Vegas.