After watching the awesome video course by Hugo Larochelle on neural nets (more on this in the previous post) we decided to test our knowledge on some computer vision contest. We looked at Kaggle and the only active competition related to computer vision (except for the digit recognizer contest, for which lots of perfect out-of-the-box solutions exist) was the Diabetic retinopathy detection contest. This was probably quite hard to become our very first project, but nevertheless we decided to try. The team included Karen, Tigran, Hrayr, Narek (1st to 3rd year bachelor students) and me (PhD student). Long story short, we finished at the 82nd place out of 661 participants, and in this post I will describe in details what we did and what mistakes we made. All required files are on these 2 github repositories. We hope this will be interesting for those who just start to play with neural networks. Also we hope to get feedback from experts and other participants.
Who we are
We are a group of students from the department of Informatics and Applied Mathematics at Yerevan State University. In 2014, inspired by successes of neural nets in various fields, especially by GoogLeNet’s excellent performance in ImageNet 2014, we decided to dive into the topic of neural networks. We study calculus, combinatorics, graph theory, algebra and many other topics in the university but we learn nothing about machine learning. Just a few students take some ML courses from Coursera or elsewhere.