In mathematics, the softmax function, also known as softargmax or normalized exponential function, is a function that takes as input a vector z of K real numbers, and normalizes it into a probability distribution consisting of K probabilities proportional to the exponentials of the input numbers.

That is, prior to applying softmax, some vector components could be negative, or greater than one; and might not sum to 1; but after applying softmax, each component will be in the interval (0,1), and the components will add up to 1, so that they can be interpreted as probabilities.

Furthermore, the larger input components will correspond to larger probabilities.

Softmax is often used in neural networks, to map the non-normalized output of a network to a probability distribution over predicted output classes.

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