Human in the Loop: The Human in the Machine

Avatar for Robert Koch


Robert Koch

I write about AI, SEO, Tech, and Innovation. Led by curiosity, I stay ahead of AI advancements. I aim for clarity and understand the necessity of change, taking guidance from Shaw: 'Progress is impossible without change,' and living by Welch's words: 'Change before you have to'.

Human in the Loop ML

Man in the machine – a buzzword familiar from science fiction novels of the early 20th century. What this term is about in the 21st century is clear: it is about Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning. The development and training of AI requires the intervention of natural intelligence at many points: human in the loop. In this loop, the human acts in a similar way to a teacher.

Table of Contents

What is a Human-in-the-Loop?

A human in the loop (HITL) refers to an autonomous system that relies on human input. In contrast, an autonomous system that does not rely on human input is called a Human-out-of-the Loop (HOOL) system.

The problem with the HOOL approach to machine learning, as I see it, is that the computer is doing all of the heavy lifting. It is responsible for understanding what data to collect and how to process it. The human element comes in only at the very end of the process, when a human operator is asked to evaluate the system’s recommendations. This means that all of the blame for poor decisions falls on the humans, while all of the credit goes to the computer.

A human in the loop is a person who participates in an algorithmic decisionmaking process. This term has been used in relation to both machine learning and artificial intelligence. There are concerns that as algorithms become more complex and are used to make more decisions, there will be a need for humans to be involved in order to ensure that these decisions are ethically sound. Some people have proposed using existing law to regulate AI, which would require developers to keep humans involved in all stages of development, including testing and deployment.

Benefits of a HITL model

In the realm of artificial intelligence and machine learning, the Human-In-The-Loop (HITL) model stands out as a significant innovation, merging the strengths of human intuition and machine efficiency. Employing a HITL model offers a myriad of advantages, especially in complex decision-making environments where both speed and accuracy are paramount. Here’s a concise list highlighting the key benefits of integrating a HITL model into system designs:

  • Enhanced Transparency: Involving human judgment clarifies decision-making processes.
  • Increased Trust: Human participation builds confidence in automated systems.
  • Speed and Efficiency: Humans can make rapid decisions, outpacing full automation in certain scenarios.
  • Problem-Solving Superiority: People apply real-world knowledge to issues beyond AI’s current capabilities.
  • Greater Flexibility: The HITL approach blends the best of manual and automated systems, allowing human intervention when beneficial.

Challenges when implementing a Human in the Loop

There are many challenges associated with implementing a human in the loop. AI has made great technological advances, but the most important step to success is getting a dataset with enough training data. Once you have that, you need to find people who can operate effectively in that environment. Then there are the challenges of integrating AI into existing workflows and making sure that it increases productivity rather than efficiency. In many cases, this leads to significant productivity gains.

Potential Applications

There are many potential applications of a human in the loop. One area where it is already being used is in healthcare. AI has been shown to be very effective at diagnosing diseases, and can provide more accurate diagnostic tools than humans. However, it is important to note that AI does not work in isolation, and thus needs to be guided carefully by humans. In addition, AI is also being applied to transportation. It is changing how liability works, as the public trusts the vehicle operator more than they trust the manufacturer or developer of the software.

Human-in-the-Loop Machine Learning
Machine Learning needs a Human in the Loop

What is Human-in-the-Loop Machine Learning?

Human in the loop machine learning is when humans are involved in the training and deployment of machine learning models. The main goal of this method is to avoid having machines make decisions that may cause harm.

Simply put, human in the loop (HITL) machine learning is a model that focuses on the user’s intent rather than content provided by pre-built criteria. In other words, it allows for more personalized and tailored experiences for users. The more people use the software, the better it becomes and faster it can be designed. This is because HITL ML helps create an experience tailored to the user- something that is sorely lacking in most machine learning techniques today.


Human input for AI wanted? Via clickworker you can get AI training data created by humans, data labeling as well as data validation. Learn more about this service.

AI Training Data

How does a HITL improve Machine Learning?

There are three primary ways in which a human in the loop can improve machine learning:

  • By providing feedback to the machine learning algorithm, the human can help it learn and improve its predictions
  • The human can help verify the accuracy of predictions made by the machine learning algorithm
  • The human can help to improve the performance of the machine learning algorithm by suggesting or implementing changes to it

Use Cases

  • There are many use cases for human in the loop machine learning. One of the most well-known examples is Google’s search engine, which uses principles of HITL to provide users with content they wish to find based on words from their query
  • Another example is Netflix, which uses HITL to recommend movies and TV shows based on a customer’s past viewing habits
  • HITL can also be used in website design and development. For example, UI/UX teams can automate their design processes by turning it into a machine learning algorithm. This allows them to create more tailored user experiences that take into account individual preferences and needs

Design a Human in the Loop System
Design and Integration of Human-in-the-Loop Systems

How do you design an effective Human-in-the-Loop system?

An effective human in the loop system is designed to allow multiple people to have input on a process at any given time, and the person who is providing this feedback will most likely be the one responsible for making the final decision.

Human and Machine Interaction

Understanding the dynamic between human operators and machines is crucial. This begins with developing tools that enhance human-machine interaction, a focal point in the area of Interactive Machine Learning.

Human-Centric Design Considerations

Recognizing humans as active agents rather than mere recipients of machine outputs is key. Designers should consider human cognitive constraints and inherent biases to build more intuitive and responsive automation tools.

Social Context and Collaboration

Taking into account the social environments in which humans interact is vital for HITL systems. This involves leveraging collaborative social systems and ambient intelligence to underscore human roles, facilitating a more natural integration of human feedback into machine learning workflows.

Human-in-the-loop: Types of Data Labeling

Depending on what kind of data sets you require, the human-in-the-loop approach can be used for different types of data labeling. If you need your machine to learn to recognize specific shapes such as cats and dogs, bounding boxes are useful. If, on the other hand, you need to classify each part of an image, segmentation is a better solution. To improve facial recognition datasets, face markings can be used. Similarly, there are different strategies when it comes to text and sentiment analysis.

Text analysis is necessary to let the machine understand what is said or written by people. People use different words to say the same thing, e.g. when they want to return an item that they bought online. If a chat bot is to correctly identify what the customer wants, it needs to know many different variations of utterances that have the same meaning. Moreover, sentiment analysis helps the machine recognize what tone a specific utterance has. This is particularly important for spoken utterances. The labeled data sets let the machine learn whether people are happy, sad, or angry when they say something.

How to install HITL AI systems in your company

There are many ways to install an AI system. However, the best way to do it is by using automation software that has been built around the concept of human in the loop (HITL). In this type of system, there is a software that has the process already factored in. Near-perfect performance from the start and reasonable results are what you can expect with this kind of automation. The beauty of it all is that you don’t have to be a computer scientist to use it!

Machine Learning systems have made their way into every industry today. With their increasing use, developers need to make sure that their systems perform well with changing data. As we know, data changes with region; physical parameters like temperature and pressure change with region. That’s why it’s important for developers to introduce human knowledge into their ML systems – through HITL systems. HITL helps increase the performance and reliability of the system while keeping humans in control. So if you’re looking for a foolproof way to implement AI into your company, look no further than HITL!

Human-in-the-Loop services by clickworker

If you have a task due to require human-in-the-loop machine learning, you should ask people of different backgrounds, ages, populations etc. clickworker offers a wide range of services for human-in-the-loop machine learning in the form of AI training datasets – from image annotations for computer vision using bounding boxes, segmentation, and more to face markings that improve facial recognition software as well as text and sentiment analysis.

Each task is divided into small microtasks that can be completed by the millions of Clickworkers around the world. They work in parallel on each individual task, providing their answer to the specific question. In the end, their work is merged to produce the results of your complex task. You can carry out your tasks quickly and get the results you need with this approach. We ensure that the right Clickworkers only receive high-quality jobs by evaluating each work opportunity.

All output is reviewed by our experts before it is sent to you. Would you like to know more about the opportunities this approach provides for machine learning? Contact our sales team – we can offer you great solutions for your needs.

Is a Human in the Loop system scalable?

One of the main challenges with human in the loop systems is that they are often not scalable. In order to handle large amounts of data, a human in the loop system would need to be scaled up as well. However, this is often difficult and expensive, and can lead to decreased performance.

However, there are ways to make a human in the loop system more scalable. One way is to use an interpretable machine learning model. This type of model could be thought of as a high-level summary of the data. It would be easier for a human in the loop system to handle large amounts of data if it was using an interpretable machine learning model.

Another way to make a human in the loop system more scalable is by using an online learning algorithm. This type of algorithm allows models to adapt to new conditions and customers or end-users. With this approach, humans can help improve the accuracy and reliability of machine learning models.

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to whether or not a human in the loop system is scalable. It depends on the particulars of the situation. However, if designed correctly, a HITL system can be scaled up to meet the needs of an organization.

Future directions for Human in the Loop systems and ML algorithms

Data labeling or image annotation techniques are used so machines can understand data. The purpose of these annotations is to create a “training set” which allows the machine learning algorithm to learn from representative examples. This is necessary because unstructured data like texts, audio, video and images cannot be properly labeled without human input.

An effective human-in-the-loop system will involve data labeling. The task of designing and implementing such a system is difficult but essential for future applications in areas such as autonomous driving, medical diagnosis, and object recognition. It is also important to consider the role of humans in regulating robots. As our societies increasingly rely on AI systems, it becomes more important that we find ways to establish trust in these technologies.

Ethical Considerations of a HITL System
AI / ML Bias and Ethical Considerations

Ethical considerations of a Human in the Loop system

When it comes to making ethical decisions, humans are often thought of as the most reliable source. But what happens when a robot is faced with a difficult choice that requires it to disobey a direct human order? In these cases, it’s important for the robot to be able to act without human supervision, because of the urgency of the situation.

The ethical considerations of a human in the loop system depend on what the robot is programmed to do. For example, if a robot is designed specifically for domestic tasks like cleaning or laundry, then its ethical considerations might be limited to things like not harming humans or respecting privacy. But if a robot is used for military purposes, its ethical considerations could be much more complex. It might have to decide whether or not to obey orders that would result in harm or death to civilians.

The project’s goal is to provide a way for crowdsourcing human opinions on what machines should do under certain ethical dilemmas. This allows us to collect data from humans about how they would expect autonomous robots behave in different situations. Robert Monarch argues that we need to train autonomous robots with human-like sensibilities so that they can make ethically sound decisions in difficult situations. We can collect this data from humans through a webform, and then use this information as the basis of machine learning algorithms.

In a supervised active learning system, humans are in charge of setting up training data for the algorithm to learn from; this allows for feedback and more accurate results. This study examines what ethical considerations a human in the loop system has to make. The scenarios are embedded in socio-economic contexts with various interpersonal relationships that would require an autonomous robot to make decisions based on emotional inclinations and ethical considerations.

There are ethical considerations of a human in the loop system, and it’s important for us to be aware of them so that we can create robots that act ethically in difficult situations.

How do you ensure that the system is fair and unbiased?

There are many ways to ensure that a human in the loop system is fair and unbiased. One way is to use a machine learning algorithm that is transparent and less biased. Another way is to have a human operator who can correct the system’s prediction and avoid any mishap. Additionally, humans can also make mistakes or have varied opinions, which ML systems are trained to handle. Recently advances have been made in the interpretability of deep neural networks.

The idea is that, as machines get better at making decisions on their own, humans will need to be more involved in order to ensure that those decisions are accurate.

One reason is that it’s often difficult for machines to understand the complexities of human decision-making. Another reason is that humans can help correct mistakes made by machines and can make sure that algorithms are not inadvertently biased against certain groups of people. By keeping humans in the loop, we can ensure that our machine learning algorithms produce accurate results and do not discriminate against anyone.


All current advancements in artificial intelligence seem to come to pass through the use of human computing power with an objective of development. However, this system is not infallible and thus can only be applied within certain boundaries. These immediate solutions (HITL) will lead to steadily expanding benefits and new methods of improvement. The program being updated and running more smoothly will eventually create and improve results like it originally was designed for.

Machine learning relies on data that is properly labeled and tagged. With enough training, machines can learn to analyze and understand complex datasets on their own. However, there are times when it’s important to have a human intervene and provide guidance. This is where a human in the loop comes in: by providing feedback and corrections, humans help machines learn from data correctly. In addition, having a human involved ensures that the data used for machine learning is accurate and unbiased. Asimov famously said “A computer can do anything a man can do except realize his dreams” – thanks to technology like machine learning, this statement may not be so far off truthfully!

FAQs on Human-in-the-Loop

What is a human-in-the-loop system?

A human-in-the-loop system is a type of artificial intelligence (AI) where humans and computer systems work together to complete tasks, usually with the aim of improving efficiency or accuracy. In these systems, the human provides inputs and feedback that help to guide and improve the performance of the AI system.

What is human-in-the-loop decision-making?

Human-in-the-loop decision making is the process of incorporating humans into automated systems to help make decisions. The human can provide judgment and expertise that the automated system may not have. This can help improve the accuracy of the decisions made by the system.

What is human-in-the-loop data analytics?

Human-in-the-loop data analytics is a process where humans and machines collaborate to iteratively improve the accuracy of predictive models. In this process, data scientists work with domain experts to label data, tune algorithms, and validate results.

What are human-in-the-loop examples?

Human-in-the-loop examples are systems where a human is involved in the decision making process. This could be something as simple as a person approving or disapproving an action, or something more complex like a human making decisions based on data generated by a machine learning algorithm.