Santa Claus: Machine Learning pioneer (& other Christmas news)

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According to numerous sources within CHRISTMAS Ltd., the CEO, Mr Santa Claus, has been at the forefront of implementing Machine Learning (ML) for decades.

In the early days, as a one man start-up Mr Claus was able to handle the data and processes of Christmas without too much difficulty. However, as the business grew and became a multinational global enterprise he swiftly realised that he would need help.

As with many businesses, initially this additional workforce consisted of family and friends, Mrs Claus frequently assisted, as did an increasing number of Elves.

Eventually the sheer amount of data acquired over the 12 month cycle (26th December – 24th December) necessitated a more technology based approach.

Currently billions of clients generate data concerning whether they have been “naughty” or “good” on an almost hourly basis, with gift orders placed throughout the year, including a huge surge in December.

The recognised advantages of Machine Learning appear almost tailor made to ensure a smooth delivery of Christmas:

  • Useful where large-scale data is available  (behaviour of clients & desired gifts)
  • Machine Learning increases speed of delivery and accuracy (right present to right person)
  • Solving classification and regression problems (has a client been good or bad?)
  • Ensures better profiling of customers to understand their needs (suitable/appropriate gifts)
  • Serves customers better and reduce attrition (vast majority of clients retained year after year)

A source confirmed that without the utilisation of Machine Learning, in tandem with outsourcing of some gift purchasing and delivery, CHRISTMAS Ltd. would be unable to function as successfully as it does. Looking to the future, as the business shows signs of increasing growth and expansion (official start date now mid-November) the potential deployment of Robotic Process Automation (RPA) and Deep Learning / Neural Networks is now being considered; the ultimate goal being the creation of a ‘Santa Claus Machine’.

When asked for a comment, Mr Claus issued the following statement: “Ho! Ho! Ho!”


In other Christmas Machine Learning news, Microsoft Norway has used Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning to write a new Christmas Carol. By analysing over 50 classic and contemporary Christmas songs and tunes, a Carol incorporating the elements assessed to be essential or desirable has now been recorded by a Norwegian singer, Thomas Holm. Whilst it is clearly not the best Christmas song ever composed (being gibberish in parts) it is far from being the worst or most annoying of the regular festive ear-worms that beset us over the festive period. The song entitled ‘Joyful time in the City’ can be heard here: ML Christmas Song .

Happy listening and Happy Christmas from all at



Santa Claus: Machine Learning pioneer
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Santa Claus: Machine Learning pioneer
A light-hearted exploration of Santa's use of Machine Learning at Christmas and throughout the year.
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