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85
Online algorithms in machine learning
 IN FIAT, AND WOEGINGER., EDS., ONLINE ALGORITHMS: THE STATE OF THE ART
, 1998
"... The areas of OnLine Algorithms and Machine Learning are both concerned with problems of making decisions about the present based only on knowledge of the past. Although these areas differ in terms of their emphasis and the problems typically studied, there are a collection of results in Computation ..."
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Cited by 61 (2 self)
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The areas of OnLine Algorithms and Machine Learning are both concerned with problems of making decisions about the present based only on knowledge of the past. Although these areas differ in terms of their emphasis and the problems typically studied, there are a collection of results in Computational Learning Theory that fit nicely into the "online algorithms" framework. This survey article discusses some of the results, models, and open problems from Computational Learning Theory that seem particularly interesting from the point of view of online algorithms. The emphasis in this article is on describing some of the simpler, more intuitive results, whose proofs can be given in their entirity. Pointers to the literature are given for more sophisticated versions of these algorithms.
Tracking a Small Set of Experts by Mixing Past Posteriors
 JOURNAL OF MACHINE LEARNING RESEARCH
, 2002
"... In this paper, we examine online learning problems in which the target concept is allowed to change over time. In each trial a master algorithm receives predictions from a large set of n experts. Its goal is to predict almost as well as the best sequence of such experts chosen offline by partit ..."
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Cited by 59 (9 self)
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In this paper, we examine online learning problems in which the target concept is allowed to change over time. In each trial a master algorithm receives predictions from a large set of n experts. Its goal is to predict almost as well as the best sequence of such experts chosen offline by partitioning the training sequence into k + 1 sections and then choosing the best expert for each section. We build on methods developed by Herbster and Warmuth and consider an open problem posed by Freund where the experts in the best partition are from a small pool of size m. Since k >> m, the best expert shifts back and forth between the experts of the small pool. We propose algorithms that solve this open problem by mixing the past posteriors maintained by the master algorithm. We relate the number of bits needed for encoding the best partition to the loss bounds of the algorithms. Instead of paying log n for choosing the best expert in each section we first pay log bits in the bounds for identifying the pool of m experts and then log m bits per new section. In the bounds we also pay twice for encoding the boundaries of the sections.
Improved secondorder bounds for prediction with expert advice
 In COLT
, 2005
"... Abstract. This work studies external regret in sequential prediction games with both positive and negative payoffs. External regret measures the difference between the payoff obtained by the forecasting strategy and the payoff of the best action. In this setting, we derive new and sharper regret bou ..."
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Cited by 46 (9 self)
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Abstract. This work studies external regret in sequential prediction games with both positive and negative payoffs. External regret measures the difference between the payoff obtained by the forecasting strategy and the payoff of the best action. In this setting, we derive new and sharper regret bounds for the wellknown exponentially weighted average forecaster and for a new forecaster with a different multiplicative update rule. Our analysis has two main advantages: first, no preliminary knowledge about the payoff sequence is needed, not even its range; second, our bounds are expressed in terms of sums of squared payoffs, replacing larger firstorder quantities appearing in previous bounds. In addition, our most refined bounds have the natural and desirable property of being stable under rescalings and general translations of the payoff sequence. 1.
Analysis of two gradientbased algorithms for online regression
 Journal of Computer and System Sciences
, 1999
"... In this paper we present a new analysis of two algorithms, Gradient Descent and Exponentiated Gradient, for solving regression problems in the online framework. Both these algorithms compute a prediction that depends linearly on the current instance, and then update the coefficients of this linear ..."
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Cited by 40 (5 self)
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In this paper we present a new analysis of two algorithms, Gradient Descent and Exponentiated Gradient, for solving regression problems in the online framework. Both these algorithms compute a prediction that depends linearly on the current instance, and then update the coefficients of this linear combination according to the gradient of the loss function. However, the two algorithms have distinctive ways of using the gradient information for updating the coefficients. For each algorithm, we show general regression bounds for any convex loss function. Furthermore, we show special bounds for the absolute and the square loss functions, thus extending previous results by Kivinen and Warmuth. In the nonlinear regression case, we show general bounds for pairs of transfer and loss functions satisfying a certain condition. We apply this result to the Hellinger loss and the entropic loss in case of logistic regression (similar results, but only for the entropic loss, were also obtained by Helmbold et al. using a different analysis.) Finally, we describe the connection between our approach and a general family of gradientbased algorithms proposed by Warmuth et al. in recent works. 1999 Academic Press 1.
Predicting a Binary Sequence Almost as Well as the Optimal Biased Coin
, 1996
"... We apply the exponential weight algorithm, introduced and Littlestone and Warmuth [17] and by Vovk [24] to the problem of predicting a binary sequence almost as well as the best biased coin. We first show that for the case of the logarithmic loss, the derived algorithm is equivalent to the Bayes alg ..."
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Cited by 40 (5 self)
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We apply the exponential weight algorithm, introduced and Littlestone and Warmuth [17] and by Vovk [24] to the problem of predicting a binary sequence almost as well as the best biased coin. We first show that for the case of the logarithmic loss, the derived algorithm is equivalent to the Bayes algorithm with Jeffrey's prior, that was studied by Xie and Barron under probabilistic assumptions [26]. We derive a uniform bound on the regret which holds for any sequence. We also show that if the empirical distribution of the sequence is bounded away from 0 and from 1, then, as the length of the sequence increases to infinity, the difference between this bound and a corresponding bound on the average case regret of the same algorithm (which is asymptotically optimal in that case) is only 1=2. We show that this gap of 1=2 is necessary by calculating the regret of the minmax optimal algorithm for this problem and showing that the asymptotic upper bound is tight. We also study the application...
Adaptive Regression by Mixing
 Journal of American Statistical Association
"... Adaptation over different procedures is of practical importance. Different procedures perform well under different conditions. In many practical situations, it is rather hard to assess which conditions are (approximately) satisfied so as to identify the best procedure for the data at hand. Thus auto ..."
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Cited by 39 (7 self)
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Adaptation over different procedures is of practical importance. Different procedures perform well under different conditions. In many practical situations, it is rather hard to assess which conditions are (approximately) satisfied so as to identify the best procedure for the data at hand. Thus automatic adaptation over various scenarios is desirable. A practically feasible method, named Adaptive Regression by Mixing (ARM) is proposed to convexly combine general candidate regression procedures. Under mild conditions, the resulting estimator is theoretically shown to perform optimally in rates of convergence without knowing which of the original procedures work the best. Simulations are conducted in several settings, including comparing a parametric model with nonparametric alternatives, comparing a neural network with a projection pursuit in multidimensional regression, and combining bandwidths in kernel regression. The results clearly support the theoretical property of ARM. The ARM ...
Potentialbased Algorithms in Online Prediction and Game Theory
"... In this paper we show that several known algorithms for sequential prediction problems (including Weighted Majority and the quasiadditive family of Grove, Littlestone, and Schuurmans), for playing iterated games (including Freund and Schapire's Hedge and MW, as well as the strategies of Hart and M ..."
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Cited by 33 (5 self)
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In this paper we show that several known algorithms for sequential prediction problems (including Weighted Majority and the quasiadditive family of Grove, Littlestone, and Schuurmans), for playing iterated games (including Freund and Schapire's Hedge and MW, as well as the strategies of Hart and MasColell), and for boosting (including AdaBoost) are special cases of a general decision strategy based on the notion of potential. By analyzing this strategy we derive known performance bounds, as well as new bounds, as simple corollaries of a single general theorem. Besides offering a new and unified view on a large family of algorithms, we establish a connection between potentialbased analysis in learning and their counterparts independently developed in game theory. By exploiting this connection, we show that certain learning problems are instances of more general gametheoretic problems. In particular, we describe a notion of generalized regret and show its applications in learning theory.
Universal compression of memoryless sources over unknown alphabets
 IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON INFORMATION THEORY
, 2004
"... It has long been known that the compression redundancy of independent and identically distributed (i.i.d.) strings increases to infinity as the alphabet size grows. It is also apparent that any string can be described by separately conveying its symbols, and its pattern—the order in which the symbol ..."
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Cited by 32 (10 self)
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It has long been known that the compression redundancy of independent and identically distributed (i.i.d.) strings increases to infinity as the alphabet size grows. It is also apparent that any string can be described by separately conveying its symbols, and its pattern—the order in which the symbols appear. Concentrating on the latter, we show that the patterns of i.i.d. strings over all, including infinite and even unknown, alphabets, can be compressed with diminishing redundancy, both in block and sequentially, and that the compression can be performed in linear time. To establish these results, we show that the number of patterns is the Bell number, that the number of patterns with a given number of symbols is the Stirling number of the second kind, and that the redundancy of patterns can be bounded using results of Hardy and Ramanujan on the number of integer partitions. The results also imply an asymptotically optimal solution for the GoodTuring probabilityestimation problem.
Complexity of Combinatorial Market Makers ∗
"... We analyze the computational complexity of market maker pricing algorithms for combinatorial prediction markets. We focus on Hanson’s popular logarithmic market scoring rule market maker (LMSR). Our goal is to implicitly maintain correct LMSR prices across an exponentially large outcome space. We ex ..."
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Cited by 31 (17 self)
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We analyze the computational complexity of market maker pricing algorithms for combinatorial prediction markets. We focus on Hanson’s popular logarithmic market scoring rule market maker (LMSR). Our goal is to implicitly maintain correct LMSR prices across an exponentially large outcome space. We examine both permutation combinatorics, where outcomes are permutations of objects, and Boolean combinatorics, where outcomes are combinations of binary events. We look at three restrictive languages that limit what traders can bet on. Even with severely limited languages, we find that LMSR pricing is #Phard, even when the same language admits polynomialtime matching without the market maker. We then propose an approximation technique for pricing permutation markets based on a recent algorithm for online permutation learning. The connections we draw between LMSR pricing and the vast literature on online learning with expert advice may be of independent interest.
Using Additive Expert Ensembles to Cope with Concept Drift
 In Proceedings of the 22nd International Conference on Machine Learning (ICML2005
, 2005
"... We consider online learning where the target concept can change over time. Previous work on expert prediction algorithms has bounded the worstcase performance on any subsequence of the training data relative to the performance of the best expert. However, because these “experts ” may be difficult t ..."
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Cited by 30 (1 self)
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We consider online learning where the target concept can change over time. Previous work on expert prediction algorithms has bounded the worstcase performance on any subsequence of the training data relative to the performance of the best expert. However, because these “experts ” may be difficult to implement, we take a more general approach and bound performance relative to the actual performance of any online learner on this single subsequence. We present the additive expert ensemble algorithm AddExp, a new, general method for using any online learner for drifting concepts. We adapt techniques for analyzing expert prediction algorithms to prove mistake and loss bounds for a discrete and a continuous version of AddExp. Finally, we present pruning methods and empirical results for data sets with concept drift. 1.