SamC Yes sir. Passed first try with 2 weeks of studying. Easiest exam ever.
The first 4 modules are completely useless. Just know the main concept of dimensionality and how it impacts interpretability of your analysis. You don't even need to know the harder syntax of R. If you can create variables, delete variables and combine data in variables, you're good to go.
Then you go over basics like multivariate regression. Throw in GLMs with common link functions. Know when to use them.
Then there are some minor shit like regularized regressions.
Decision trees are an even bigger joke. They're most likely not going to ask you to run something like a random forest due to computing limitations, so don't study that section too much. Just know the general concepts.
The final section is on unsupervised learning (Cluster analysis and PCA). Very easy to understand.
The exams are easier today. The field is not as popular as it once was, so the SOA can raise passrates and keep the same number of new credentialed actuaries the same. 50-70% passrate exams is not due to better study material.