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Looking at this article, I feel quite lost. I don't have the necessary background in machine learning.

Could someone point me to some reference materials (books, articles, videos, Coursera, etc) that will get me up to speed on the stuff I need to know in order to understand this article?

Andrew Ng, who teaches the CS 229 Machine Learning course at Stanford, has his lecture notes online: http://cs229.stanford.edu/materials.html . I have found these useful in the past.

He also teaches the Coursera machine learning course: https://www.coursera.org/course/ml

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