Statistics - Machine Learning Publications (50)


Statistics - Machine Learning Publications

We give convergence guarantees for estimating the coefficients of a symmetric mixture of two linear regressions by expectation maximization (EM). In particular, if the initializer has a large cosine angle with the population coefficient vector and the signal to noise ratio (SNR) is large, a sample-splitting version of the EM algorithm converges to the true coefficient vector with high probability. Here "large" means that each quantity is required to be at least a universal constant. Read More

There is widespread sentiment that it is not possible to effectively utilize fast gradient methods (e.g. Nesterov's acceleration, conjugate gradient, heavy ball) for the purposes of stochastic optimization due to their instability and error accumulation, a notion made precise in d'Aspremont 2008 and Devolder, Glineur, and Nesterov 2014. Read More

This paper introduces a generalization of Convolutional Neural Networks (CNNs) from low-dimensional grid data, such as images, to graph-structured data. We propose a novel spatial convolution utilizing a random walk to uncover the relations within the input, analogous to the way the standard convolution uses the spatial neighborhood of a pixel on the grid. The convolution has an intuitive interpretation, is efficient and scalable and can also be used on data with varying graph structure. Read More

Within machine learning, the supervised learning field aims at modeling the input-output relationship of a system, from past observations of its behavior. Decision trees characterize the input-output relationship through a series of nested $if-then-else$ questions, the testing nodes, leading to a set of predictions, the leaf nodes. Several of such trees are often combined together for state-of-the-art performance: random forest ensembles average the predictions of randomized decision trees trained independently in parallel, while tree boosting ensembles train decision trees sequentially to refine the predictions made by the previous ones. Read More

The $\ell_1$ regularized sparse model has been favourably used in machine learning society. Due to the non-smoothness, fast optimizers like quasi-Newton methods can not be directly applied. In this paper, we propose the first stochastic limited-memory quasi-newton optimizer that specializing in strongly convex loss function with $\ell_1$-regularization. Read More

Hypothesis testing in the linear regression model is a fundamental statistical problem. We consider linear regression in the high-dimensional regime where the number of parameters exceeds the number of samples ($p> n$) and assume that the high-dimensional parameters vector is $s_0$ sparse. We develop a general and flexible $\ell_\infty$ projection statistic for hypothesis testing in this model. Read More

In this paper, we study the stochastic gradient descent (SGD) method for the nonconvex nonsmooth optimization, and propose an accelerated SGD method by combining the variance reduction technique with Nesterov's extrapolation technique. Moreover, based on the local error bound condition, we establish the linear convergence of our method to obtain a stationary point of the nonconvex optimization. In particular, we prove that not only the sequence generated linearly converges to a stationary point of the problem, but also the corresponding sequence of objective values is linearly convergent. Read More

We study the stochastic multi-armed bandit (MAB) problem in the presence of side-observations across actions that occur as a result of an underlying network structure. In our model, a bipartite graph captures the relationship between actions and a common set of unknowns such that choosing an action reveals observations for the unknowns that it is connected to. This models a common scenario in online social networks where users respond to their friends' activity, thus providing side information about each other's preferences. Read More

Our goal is to learn a semantic parser that maps natural language utterances into executable programs when only indirect supervision is available: examples are labeled with the correct execution result, but not the program itself. Consequently, we must search the space of programs for those that output the correct result, while not being misled by spurious programs: incorrect programs that coincidentally output the correct result. We connect two common learning paradigms, reinforcement learning (RL) and maximum marginal likelihood (MML), and then present a new learning algorithm that combines the strengths of both. Read More

Motivated by machine learning applications in networks of sensors, internet-of-things (IoT) devices, and autonomous agents, we propose techniques for distributed stochastic convex learning from high-rate data streams. The setup involves a network of nodes---each one of which has a stream of data arriving at a constant rate---that solve a stochastic convex optimization problem by collaborating with each other over rate-limited communication links. To this end, we present and analyze two algorithms---termed distributed stochastic approximation mirror descent (D-SAMD) and {\em accelerated} distributed stochastic approximation mirror descent (AD-SAMD)---that are based on two stochastic variants of mirror descent. Read More

This paper considers the problem of decentralized optimization with a composite objective containing smooth and non-smooth terms. To solve the problem, a proximal-gradient scheme is studied. Specifically, the smooth and nonsmooth terms are dealt with by gradient update and proximal update, respectively. Read More

As entity type systems become richer and more fine-grained, we expect the number of types assigned to a given entity to increase. However, most fine-grained typing work has focused on datasets that exhibit a low degree of type multiplicity. In this paper, we consider the high-multiplicity regime inherent in data sources such as Wikipedia that have semi-open type systems. Read More

The aim of process discovery, originating from the area of process mining, is to discover a process model based on business process execution data. A majority of process discovery techniques relies on an event log as an input. An event log is a static source of historical data capturing the execution of a business process. Read More

Characterization of consumers has been explored previously in prior works with different goals. The current work presents user personas in a VoD streaming space using a tenure timeline and temporal behavioral features in the absence of explicit user profiles. A choice of tenure timeline caters to business needs of understanding the evolution and phases of user behavior as their accounts age while temporal characteristics are necessary to capture the dynamic aspect of user personas labels. Read More

In emotion recognition, it is difficult to recognize human's emotional states using just a single modality. Besides, the annotation of physiological emotional data is particularly expensive. These two aspects make the building of effective emotion recognition model challenging. Read More

Tasks like code generation and semantic parsing require mapping unstructured (or partially structured) inputs to well-formed, executable outputs. We introduce abstract syntax networks, a modeling framework for these problems. The outputs are represented as abstract syntax trees (ASTs) and constructed by a decoder with a dynamically-determined modular structure paralleling the structure of the output tree. Read More

Advances in mobile computing technologies have made it possible to monitor and apply data-driven interventions across complex systems in real time. Markov decision processes (MDPs) are the primary model for sequential decision problems with a large or indefinite time horizon. Choosing a representation of the underlying decision process that is both Markov and low-dimensional is non-trivial. Read More

Stein variational gradient descent (SVGD) is a deterministic sampling algorithm that iteratively transports a set of particles to approximate given distributions, based on an efficient gradient-based update that guarantees to optimally decrease the KL divergence within a function space. This paper develops the first theoretical analysis on SVGD, discussing its weak convergence properties and showing that its asymptotic behavior is captured by a gradient flow of the KL divergence functional under a new metric structure induced by Stein operator. We also provide a number of results on Stein operator and Stein's identity using the notion of weak derivative, including a new proof of the distinguishability of Stein discrepancy under weak conditions. Read More

Class imbalance is a challenging issue in practical classification problems for deep learning models as well as traditional models. Traditionally successful countermeasures such as synthetic over-sampling have had limited success with complex, structured data handled by deep learning models. In this paper, we propose Deep Over-sampling (DOS), a framework for extending the synthetic over-sampling method to exploit the deep feature space acquired by a convolutional neural network (CNN). Read More

We present a dynamic model selection approach for resource-constrained prediction. Given an input instance at test-time, a gating function identifies a prediction model for the input among a collection of models. Our objective is to minimize overall average cost without sacrificing accuracy. Read More

Using predictive models to identify patterns that can act as biomarkers for different neuropathoglogical conditions is becoming highly prevalent. In this paper, we consider the problem of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) classification. While non-invasive imaging measurements, such as the rest state fMRI, are typically used in this problem, it can be beneficial to incorporate a wide variety of non-imaging features, including personal and socio-cultural traits, into predictive modeling. Read More

The multivariate linear regression model with shuffled data and additive Gaussian noise arises in various correspondence estimation and matching problems. Focusing on the denoising aspect of this problem, we provide a characterization the minimax error rate that is sharp up to logarithmic factors. We also analyze the performance of two versions of a computationally efficient estimator, and establish their consistency for a large range of input parameters. Read More

We develop and evaluate tolerance interval methods for dynamic treatment regimes (DTRs) that can provide more detailed prognostic information to patients who will follow an estimated optimal regime. Although the problem of constructing confidence intervals for DTRs has been extensively studied, prediction and tolerance intervals have received little attention. We begin by reviewing in detail different interval estimation and prediction methods and then adapting them to the DTR setting. Read More

This paper addresses the limitations of previous training methods that emphasize either easy examples like self-paced learning or difficult examples like hard example mining. Inspired by active learning, we propose two alternatives to re-weight training samples based on lightweight estimates of sample uncertainty in stochastic gradient descent (SGD): the variance in predicted probability of the correct class across iterations of mini-batch SGD, and the proximity of the correct class probability to the decision threshold (or threshold closeness). Extensive experimental results on multiple datasets show that our methods reliably improve accuracy in various network architectures, including providing additional gains on top of other popular training tools, such as ADAM, dropout, and distillation. Read More

We consider the problem of estimating a consensus community structure by combining information from multiple layers of a multi-layer network or multiple snapshots of a time-varying network. Numerous methods have been proposed in the literature for the more general problem of multi-view clustering in the past decade based on the spectral clustering or a low-rank matrix factorization. As a general theme, these "intermediate fusion" methods involve obtaining a low column rank matrix by optimizing an objective function and then using the columns of the matrix for clustering. Read More

We propose a novel optimization approach for learning a low-rank matrix which is also constrained to be in a given linear subspace. Low-rank constraints are regularly employed in applications such as recommender systems and multi-task learning. In addition, several system identification problems require a learning matrix with both low-rank and linear subspace constraints. Read More

When tracking user-specific online activities, each user's preference is revealed in the form of choices and comparisons. For example, a user's purchase history tracks her choices, i.e. Read More

The scalable calculation of matrix determinants has been a bottleneck to the widespread application of many machine learning methods such as determinantal point processes, Gaussian processes, generalised Markov random fields, graph models and many others. In this work, we estimate log determinants under the framework of maximum entropy, given information in the form of moment constraints from stochastic trace estimation. The estimates demonstrate a significant improvement on state-of-the-art alternative methods, as shown on a wide variety of UFL sparse matrices. Read More

We present here a new model and algorithm which performs an efficient Natural gradient descent for Multilayer Perceptrons. Natural gradient descent was originally proposed from a point of view of information geometry, and it performs the steepest descent updates on manifolds in a Riemannian space. In particular, we extend an approach taken by the "Whitened neural networks" model. Read More

Global constraints and reranking have not been used in cognates detection research to date. We propose methods for using global constraints by performing rescoring of the score matrices produced by state of the art cognates detection systems. Using global constraints to perform rescoring is complementary to state of the art methods for performing cognates detection and results in significant performance improvements beyond current state of the art performance on publicly available datasets with different language pairs and various conditions such as different levels of baseline state of the art performance and different data size conditions, including with more realistic large data size conditions than have been evaluated with in the past. Read More

Current statistical inference problems in areas like astronomy, genomics, and marketing routinely involve the simultaneous testing of thousands -- even millions -- of null hypotheses. For high-dimensional multivariate distributions, these hypotheses may concern a wide range of parameters, with complex and unknown dependence structures among variables. In analyzing such hypothesis testing procedures, gains in efficiency and power can be achieved by performing variable reduction on the set of hypotheses prior to testing. Read More

Variable clustering is one of the most important unsupervised learning methods, ubiquitous in most research areas. In the statistics and computer science literature, most of the clustering methods lead to non-overlapping partitions of the variables. However, in many applications, some variables may belong to multiple groups, yielding clusters with overlap. Read More

Though the deep learning is pushing the machine learning to a new stage, basic theories of machine learning are still limited. The principle of learning, the role of the a prior knowledge, the role of neuron bias, and the basis for choosing neural transfer function and cost function, etc., are still far from clear. Read More

Matrix completion models are among the most common formulations of recommender systems. Recent works have showed a boost of performance of these techniques when introducing the pairwise relationships between users/items in the form of graphs, and imposing smoothness priors on these graphs. However, such techniques do not fully exploit the local stationarity structures of user/item graphs, and the number of parameters to learn is linear w. Read More

Affiliations: 1University of Sydney and Capital Markets Cooperative Research Centre, 2Data61/CSIRO and the Australian National University, 3Qatar Computing Research Institute, HBKU

PCA is a classical statistical technique whose simplicity and maturity has seen it find widespread use as an anomaly detection technique. However, it is limited in this regard by being sensitive to gross perturbations of the input, and by seeking a linear subspace that captures normal behaviour. The first issue has been dealt with by robust PCA, a variant of PCA that explicitly allows for some data points to be arbitrarily corrupted, however, this does not resolve the second issue, and indeed introduces the new issue that one can no longer inductively find anomalies on a test set. Read More

Gaussian processes (GPs) are powerful non-parametric function estimators. However, their applications are largely limited by the expensive computational cost of the inference procedures. Existing stochastic or distributed synchronous variational inferences, although have alleviated this issue by scaling up GPs to millions of samples, are still far from satisfactory for real-world large applications, where the data sizes are often orders of magnitudes larger, say, billions. Read More

Charts are an excellent way to convey patterns and trends in data, but they do not facilitate further modeling of the data or close inspection of individual data points. We present a fully automated system for extracting the numerical values of data points from images of scatter plots. We use deep learning techniques to identify the key components of the chart, and optical character recognition together with robust regression to map from pixels to the coordinate system of the chart. Read More

In this paper we introduce a new feature selection algorithm to remove the irrelevant or redundant features in the data sets. In this algorithm the importance of a feature is based on its fitting to the Catastrophe model. Akaike information crite- rion value is used for ranking the features in the data set. Read More

Sparse signal recovery is a challenging problem that requires fast and accurate algorithms. Recently, neural networks have been applied to this problem with promising results. By exploiting massively parallel GPU processing architectures and oodles of training data, they are able to run orders of magnitude faster than existing methods. Read More

Bandit structured prediction describes a stochastic optimization framework where learning is performed from partial feedback. This feedback is received in the form of a task loss evaluation to a predicted output structure, without having access to gold standard structures. We advance this framework by lifting linear bandit learning to neural sequence-to-sequence learning problems using attention-based recurrent neural networks. Read More

The optimization of composition and processing to obtain materials that exhibit desirable characteristics has historically relied on a combination of scientist intuition, trial and error, and luck. We propose a methodology that can accelerate this process by fitting data-driven models to experimental data as it is collected to suggest which experiment should be performed next. This methodology can guide the scientist to test the most promising candidates earlier, and can supplement scientific intuition and knowledge with data-driven insights. Read More

Training convolutional networks (CNN's) that fit on a single GPU with minibatch stochastic gradient descent has become effective in practice. However, there is still no effective method for training large CNN's that do not fit in the memory of a few GPU cards, or for parallelizing CNN training. In this work we show that a simple hard mixture of experts model can be efficiently trained to good effect on large scale hashtag (multilabel) prediction tasks. Read More

We consider the phase retrieval problem of recovering the unknown signal from the magnitude-only measurements, where the measurements can be contaminated by both sparse arbitrary corruption and bounded random noise. We propose a new nonconvex algorithm for robust phase retrieval, namely Robust Wirtinger Flow, to jointly estimate the unknown signal and the sparse corruption. We show that our proposed algorithm is guaranteed to converge linearly to the unknown true signal up to a minimax optimal statistical precision in such a challenging setting. Read More

Many different classification tasks need to manage structured data, which are usually modeled as graphs. Moreover, these graphs can be dynamic, meaning that the vertices/edges of each graph may change during time. Our goal is to jointly exploit structured data and temporal information through the use of a neural network model. Read More

Osteoporosis is a public health problem characterized by increased fracture risk secondary to low bone mass and microarchitectural deterioration of bone tissue. Almost all fractures of the hip require hospitalization and major surgery. Early diagnosis of osteoporosis plays an important role in preventing osteoporotic fracture. Read More

We consider the problem of diagnosis where a set of simple observations are used to infer a potentially complex hidden hypothesis. Finding the optimal subset of observations is intractable in general, thus we focus on the problem of active diagnosis, where the agent selects the next most-informative observation based on the results of previous observations. We show that under the assumption of uniform observation entropy, one can build an implication model which directly predicts the outcome of the potential next observation conditioned on the results of past observations, and selects the observation with the maximum entropy. Read More

In this paper we describe our attempt at producing a state-of-the-art Twitter sentiment classifier using Convolutional Neural Networks (CNNs) and Long Short Term Memory (LSTMs) networks. Our system leverages a large amount of unlabeled data to pre-train word embeddings. We then use a subset of the unlabeled data to fine tune the embeddings using distant supervision. Read More

We present a baseline approach for cross-modal knowledge fusion. Different basic fusion methods are evaluated on existing embedding approaches to show the potential of joining knowledge about certain concepts across modalities in a fused concept representation. Read More

Deep learning has become the method of choice in many application domains of machine learning in recent years, especially for multi-class classification tasks. The most common loss function used in this context is the cross-entropy loss, which reduces to the log loss in the typical case when there is a single correct response label. While this loss is insensitive to the identity of the assigned class in the case of misclassification, in practice it is often the case that some errors may be more detrimental than others. Read More

For effective treatment of Alzheimer disease (AD), it is important to identify subjects who are most likely to exhibit rapid cognitive decline. Herein, we developed a novel framework based on a deep convolutional neural network which can predict future cognitive decline in mild cognitive impairment (MCI) patients using flurodeoxyglucose and florbetapir positron emission tomography (PET). The architecture of the network only relies on baseline PET studies of AD and normal subjects as the training dataset. Read More