# Ordinary Least Squares and Ridge Regression Variance¶

Due to the few points in each dimension and the straight line that linear regression uses to follow these points as well as it can, noise on the observations will cause great variance as shown in the first plot. Every line’s slope can vary quite a bit for each prediction due to the noise induced in the observations.

Ridge regression is basically minimizing a penalised version of the least-squared function. The penalising shrinks the value of the regression coefficients. Despite the few data points in each dimension, the slope of the prediction is much more stable and the variance in the line itself is greatly reduced, in comparison to that of the standard linear regression

**Python source code:** `plot_ols_ridge_variance.py`

```
print(__doc__)
# Code source: Gaël Varoquaux
# Modified for documentation by Jaques Grobler
# License: BSD 3 clause
import numpy as np
import matplotlib.pyplot as plt
from sklearn import linear_model
X_train = np.c_[.5, 1].T
y_train = [.5, 1]
X_test = np.c_[0, 2].T
np.random.seed(0)
classifiers = dict(ols=linear_model.LinearRegression(),
ridge=linear_model.Ridge(alpha=.1))
fignum = 1
for name, clf in classifiers.items():
fig = plt.figure(fignum, figsize=(4, 3))
plt.clf()
plt.title(name)
ax = plt.axes([.12, .12, .8, .8])
for _ in range(6):
this_X = .1 * np.random.normal(size=(2, 1)) + X_train
clf.fit(this_X, y_train)
ax.plot(X_test, clf.predict(X_test), color='.5')
ax.scatter(this_X, y_train, s=3, c='.5', marker='o', zorder=10)
clf.fit(X_train, y_train)
ax.plot(X_test, clf.predict(X_test), linewidth=2, color='blue')
ax.scatter(X_train, y_train, s=30, c='r', marker='+', zorder=10)
ax.set_xticks(())
ax.set_yticks(())
ax.set_ylim((0, 1.6))
ax.set_xlabel('X')
ax.set_ylabel('y')
ax.set_xlim(0, 2)
fignum += 1
plt.show()
```

**Total running time of the example:** 0.23 seconds
( 0 minutes 0.23 seconds)