Artificial Neural Networks/Committee of Machines

Artificial neural networks can have very different properties depending on how they are constructed and how they are trained. Even in the case where two networks are trained on the same set of input data, different training algorithms can produce different systems with different characteristics. By combining multiple ANN into a single system, a committee of machines is formed. The result of a committee system is a combination of the results of the various component systems. For instance, the most common answer among a discrete set of answers in the committee can be taken as the overall answer, or the average answer can be taken.

Committee of machines (COM) systems tend to be more robust then the individual component systems, but they can also lose some of the “expertise” of the individual systems when answers are averaged out.