What are Convolutional Neural Networks and where are they used?

In today’s instant image sharing era, it’s essential to get the tech ready to talk the language of images. While it is comfortable for our brains to interpret what an image represents and refers to, it is a complex challenge to get a computer to do the same. Computers interpret the images to decode them as 2D arrays of numbers. If we include colors, it becomes a 3D array where the last field denotes the RGB value. Like the processes followed by the human brain, their task is to take a typical picture as an input and produce a classification result. This is where it is born of fully convolutional neural networks (CNNs). Best data science certification engineers are exploring its potential.

Let’s talk more about CNN’s and their areas of application.


Blog Contents

  • What are Convolutional Neural Networks?
  • Structure of CNNs
  • Convolutional Neural Networks Applications
  • Conclusion

What are Convolutional Neural Networks?

Let’s begin with what CNNs are. Like the way objects are recognized by our brains when we see an image, the aim is to get machines to identify objects in the same way. However, there is a big difference; it is what a human brain sees when it looks at a picture or a machine. To a machine, just another sequence of numbers is an image. Each object has its pattern, and that’s what the machine is going to use in a picture to recognize an object.

As parents teach their children to understand what a ball is or what food is, computers are often educated by big data experts by showing a million images of the same object. With each sample, their ability to recognize the object improves. 


Structure of CNNs

Compared to a periodic neural network, CNNs are organized differently. Each layer consists of a collection of neurons in a standard neural network. Each layer is linked to all of the previous layer’s neurons. The way convolutional neural networks function is to have three-dimensional layers in the form of distance, height, and depth. In a specific layer, all neurons are not connected to the neurons in the previous layer. Instead, in the previous layer, a layer is only related to a small portion of neurons.

Let’s get started with the top layer:

  • The Math Layer

The mathematical layer is regarded as the top layer. In reality, it is the convolutional layer and deals with recognizing the pattern of numbers it sees. Let’s say that the first location in this layer begins by adding a philter around the image’s top-left corner. The philter is also called a kernel or a neuron. It reads the portion of the image and forms a conclusion of an array of numbers, multiplies the array, and from this method, deduces a single number.


  • The Rectified Linear Unit Layer

The Rectified Linear Unit Layer (ReLU) is the next layer encountered. This is where the roles of activation take place. A zero threshold is initially set for the activation function. Like its predecessors, the activation gradient only operates at 0 and 1 and has intermediate gradients. It is said that ReLUs greatly assist in the declining gradient of error due to their linear, non-saturating form. However, due to the fragile existence of a ReLU, even 40 percent of your network in a training dataset may be dead.


  • The Fully Connected Layer

As with every finished product, it is essential to have one final layer covering all the internal complexities. In a convolutional neural network, this layer is the complete layer. Before it (be it a ReLU or a convolutional layer), it takes the layer’s final output and provides an N-dimensional vector output. ‘N’ here implies the number of classes from which the software selects. If the software looks at horses’ photographs, for example, it will look at high-level characteristics such as four legs, hooves, tail, or muzzle. This ultimately linked layer will look at the high-level characteristics and link them to the picture, thus performing a horse classification.


Convolutional Neural Networks Applications

Simple CNN applications that we can see in daily life are obvious options, such as facial recognition, image classification, speech recognition programs, etc. These are words that we, as laymen, are familiar with and comprise a significant part of our daily life, especially with social media networks like Instagram that are image-savvy. Some of CNN’s main applications are described below,



  • Understanding Climate


In the battle against climate change, CNNs can be used to play a significant role, in particular in understanding why we see such dramatic changes and how we can experiment with curbing the effect. It is said that data can also provide more significant social and scientific perspectives in such natural history collections, but this will require trained human resources, such as researchers who can access these types of repositories physically. In this area, there is a need for more workforce to conduct more in-depth experiments.



  • Documents Analysis  


For document analysis, convolutional neural networks may also be used. This is not only useful for studying handwriting, but also has a large stake in recognizers. It must execute almost a million commands a minute for a computer to search an individual’s writing, and then compare it to the extensive database. It is said that the error rate has been reduced to a minimum of 0.4 percent at the character level with the use of CNNs and newer models and algorithms, but it is still not commonly used in comprehensive research.


  • Facial Recognition Decoding


Facial recognition is broken down into the following significant elements by a convolutional neural network-

  • Identification of any face in the image
  • In view of external influences, such as sun, angle, pose, etc., are focusing on each face.
  • Identifying special characteristics
  • To fit a face with a name, compare all the collected data with the database’s current data.
  • For scene marking as well, a similar procedure is followed.



CNN’s are, as you can see, mainly used for the classification and identification of images. CNN’s expertise is its coevolutionary capacity. The potential for further use of CNNs is infinite and needs to be explored by many big data experts and pushed to further limits to discover all that this complex machinery can accomplish.