I am interested in learning the basics of machine learning and am wondering what the best ONLINE resources are. Keep in mind I am a total novice and know very little about the subject.
You should check the Peter Norvig's web site. http://norvig.com/
However, texts of Russel and Norvig or Alpaydin would keep you better focused.
Here you can also refer to the following links for the online tutorial for the same:
For AI: https://intellipaat.com/blog/what-is-artificial-intelligence/
For ML: https://intellipaat.com/blog/what-is-machine-learning/