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2011


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Fast Convergent Algorithms for Expectation Propagation Approximate Bayesian Inference

Seeger, M., Nickisch, H.

In JMLR Workshop and Conference Proceedings Volume 15: AISTATS 2011, pages: 652-660, (Editors: Gordon, G. , D. Dunson, M. Dudík ), MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, USA, 14th International Conference on Artificial Intelligence and Statistics, April 2011 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We propose a novel algorithm to solve the expectation propagation relaxation of Bayesian inference for continuous-variable graphical models. In contrast to most previous algorithms, our method is provably convergent. By marrying convergent EP ideas from (Opper&Winther, 2005) with covariance decoupling techniques (Wipf&Nagarajan, 2008; Nickisch&Seeger, 2009), it runs at least an order of magnitude faster than the most common EP solver.

PDF Web [BibTex]

2011

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Active Exploration for Robot Parameter Selection in Episodic Reinforcement Learning

Kroemer, O., Peters, J.

In Proceedings of the 2011 IEEE Symposium on Adaptive Dynamic Programming and Reinforcement Learning (ADPRL 2011), pages: 25-31, IEEE, Piscataway, NJ, USA, IEEE Symposium on Adaptive Dynamic Programming and Reinforcement Learning (ADPRL), April 2011 (inproceedings)

Abstract
As the complexity of robots and other autonomous systems increases, it becomes more important that these systems can adapt and optimize their settings actively. However, such optimization is rarely trivial. Sampling from the system is often expensive in terms of time and other costs, and excessive sampling should therefore be avoided. The parameter space is also usually continuous and multi-dimensional. Given the inherent exploration-exploitation dilemma of the problem, we propose treating it as an episodic reinforcement learning problem. In this reinforcement learning framework, the policy is defined by the system's parameters and the rewards are given by the system's performance. The rewards accumulate during each episode of a task. In this paper, we present a method for efficiently sampling and optimizing in continuous multidimensional spaces. The approach is based on Gaussian process regression, which can represent continuous non-linear mappings from parameters to system performance. We employ an upper confidence bound policy, which explicitly manages the trade-off between exploration and exploitation. Unlike many other policies for this kind of problem, we do not rely on a discretization of the action space. The presented method was evaluated on a real robot. The robot had to learn grasping parameters in order to adapt its grasping execution to different objects. The proposed method was also tested on a more general gain tuning problem. The results of the experiments show that the presented method can quickly determine suitable parameters and is applicable to real online learning applications.

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]


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Relative Entropy Inverse Reinforcement Learning

Boularias, A., Kober, J., Peters, J.

In JMLR Workshop and Conference Proceedings Volume 15: AISTATS 2011, pages: 182-189, (Editors: Gordon, G. , D. Dunson, M. Dudík ), MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, USA, Fourteenth International Conference on Artificial Intelligence and Statistics, April 2011 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We consider the problem of imitation learning where the examples, demonstrated by an expert, cover only a small part of a large state space. Inverse Reinforcement Learning (IRL) provides an efficient tool for generalizing the demonstration, based on the assumption that the expert is optimally acting in a Markov Decision Process (MDP). Most of the past work on IRL requires that a (near)-optimal policy can be computed for different reward functions. However, this requirement can hardly be satisfied in systems with a large, or continuous, state space. In this paper, we propose a model-free IRL algorithm, where the relative entropy between the empirical distribution of the state-action trajectories under a uniform policy and their distribution under the learned policy is minimized by stochastic gradient descent. We compare this new approach to well-known IRL algorithms using approximate MDP models. Empirical results on simulated car racing, gridworld and ball-in-a-cup problems show that our approach is able to learn good policies from a small number of demonstrations.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Removing noise from astronomical images using a pixel-specific noise model

Burger, H., Schölkopf, B., Harmeling, S.

In pages: 8, (Editors: H Lensch and SL Narasimhan and ME Testorf), IEEE, Piscataway, NJ, USA, IEEE International Conference on Computational Photography (ICCP), April 2011 (inproceedings)

Abstract
For digital photographs of astronomical objects, where exposure times are usually long and ISO settings high, the so-called dark-current is a significant source of noise. Dark-current refers to thermally generated electrons and is therefore present even in the absence of light. This paper presents a novel approach for denoising astronomical images that have been corrupted by dark-current noise. Our method relies on a probabilistic description of the dark-current of each pixel of a given camera. The noise model is then combined with an image prior which is adapted to astronomical images. In a laboratory environment, we use a black and white CCD camera containing a cooling unit and show that our method is superior to existing methods in terms of root mean squared error. Furthermore, we show that our method is practically relevant by providing visually more appealing results on astronomical photographs taken with a single lens reflex CMOS camera.

Web DOI [BibTex]

Web DOI [BibTex]


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Towards Motor Skill Learning for Robotics

Peters, J., Mülling, K., Kober, J., Nguyen-Tuong, D., Kroemer, O.

In Robotics Research, pages: 469-482, (Editors: Pradalier, C. , R. Siegwart, G. Hirzinger), Springer, Berlin, Germany, 14th International Symposium on Robotics Research (ISRR), January 2011 (inproceedings)

Abstract
Learning robots that can acquire new motor skills and refine existing one has been a long standing vision of robotics, artificial intelligence, and the cognitive sciences. Early steps towards this goal in the 1980s made clear that reasoning and human insights will not suffice. Instead, new hope has been offered by the rise of modern machine learning approaches. However, to date, it becomes increasingly clear that off-the-shelf machine learning approaches will not suffice for motor skill learning as these methods often do not scale into the high-dimensional domains of manipulator and humanoid robotics nor do they fulfill the real-time requirement of our domain. As an alternative, we propose to break the generic skill learning problem into parts that we can understand well from a robotics point of view. After designing appropriate learning approaches for these basic components, these will serve as the ingredients of a general approach to motor skill learning. In this paper, we discuss our recent and current progress in this direction. For doing so, we present our work on learning to control, on learning elementary movements as well as our steps towards learning of complex tasks. We show several evaluations both using real robots as well as physically realistic simulations.

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]


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Learning Visual Representations for Interactive Systems

Piater, J., Jodogne, S., Detry, R., Kraft, D., Krüger, N., Kroemer, O., Peters, J.

In Robotics Research, pages: 399-416, (Editors: Pradalier, C. , R. Siegwart, G. Hirzinger), Springer, Berlin, Germany, 14th International Symposium on Robotics Research (ISRR), January 2011 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We describe two quite different methods for associating action parameters to visual percepts. Our RLVC algorithm performs reinforcement learning directly on the visual input space. To make this very large space manageable, RLVC interleaves the reinforcement learner with a supervised classification algorithm that seeks to split perceptual states so as to reduce perceptual aliasing. This results in an adaptive discretization of the perceptual space based on the presence or absence of visual features. Its extension RLJC also handles continuous action spaces. In contrast to the minimalistic visual representations produced by RLVC and RLJC, our second method learns structural object models for robust object detection and pose estimation by probabilistic inference. To these models, the method associates grasp experiences autonomously learned by trial and error. These experiences form a non-parametric representation of grasp success likelihoods over gripper poses, which we call a gra sp d ensi ty. Thus, object detection in a novel scene simultaneously produces suitable grasping options.

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]


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A Non-Parametric Approach to Dynamic Programming

Kroemer, O., Peters, J.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 24, pages: 1719-1727, (Editors: J Shawe-Taylor and RS Zemel and P Bartlett and F Pereira and KQ Weinberger), Twenty-Fifth Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), 2011 (inproceedings)

Abstract
In this paper, we consider the problem of policy evaluation for continuousstate systems. We present a non-parametric approach to policy evaluation, which uses kernel density estimation to represent the system. The true form of the value function for this model can be determined, and can be computed using Galerkin’s method. Furthermore, we also present a unified view of several well-known policy evaluation methods. In particular, we show that the same Galerkin method can be used to derive Least-Squares Temporal Difference learning, Kernelized Temporal Difference learning, and a discrete-state Dynamic Programming solution, as well as our proposed method. In a numerical evaluation of these algorithms, the proposed approach performed better than the other methods.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Transfer Learning with Copulas

Lopez-Paz, D., Hernandez-Lobato, J.

In pages: 2, NIPS, Workshop on Copulas in Machine Learning, 2011 (inproceedings)

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Denoising sparse noise via online dictionary learning

Cherian, A., Sra, S., Papanikolopoulos, N.

In Proceedings of the IEEE International Conference on Acoustics, Speech, and Signal Processing, ICASSP 2011, pages: 2060 -2063, IEEE, IEEE International Conference on Acoustics, Speech, and Signal Processing (ICASSP), 2011 (inproceedings)

DOI [BibTex]

DOI [BibTex]


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PILCO: A Model-Based and Data-Efficient Approach to Policy Search

Deisenroth, MP., Rasmussen, CE.

In Proceedings of the 28th International Conference on Machine Learning, ICML 2011, pages: 465-472, (Editors: L Getoor and T Scheffer), Omnipress, 2011 (inproceedings)

Abstract
In this paper, we introduce PILCO, a practical, data-efficient model-based policy search method. PILCO reduces model bias, one of the key problems of model-based reinforcement learning, in a principled way. By learning a probabilistic dynamics model and explicitly incorporating model uncertainty into long-term planning, PILCO can cope with very little data and facilitates learning from scratch in only a few trials. Policy evaluation is performed in closed form using state-of-the-art approximate inference. Furthermore, policy gradients are computed analytically for policy improvement. We report unprecedented learning efficiency on challenging and high-dimensional control tasks.

Web [BibTex]

Web [BibTex]


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Kernel Bayes’ Rule

Fukumizu, K., Song, L., Gretton, A.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 24, pages: 1737-1745, (Editors: J Shawe-Taylor and RS Zemel and P Bartlett and F Pereira and KQ Weinberger), Curran Associates, Inc., Red Hook, NY, USA, Twenty-Fifth Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), 2011 (inproceedings)

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Optimal Reinforcement Learning for Gaussian Systems

Hennig, P.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 24, pages: 325-333, (Editors: J Shawe-Taylor and RS Zemel and P Bartlett and F Pereira and KQ Weinberger), Twenty-Fifth Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), 2011 (inproceedings)

Abstract
The exploration-exploitation trade-off is among the central challenges of reinforcement learning. The optimal Bayesian solution is intractable in general. This paper studies to what extent analytic statements about optimal learning are possible if all beliefs are Gaussian processes. A first order approximation of learning of both loss and dynamics, for nonlinear, time-varying systems in continuous time and space, subject to a relatively weak restriction on the dynamics, is described by an infinite-dimensional partial differential equation. An approximate finitedimensional projection gives an impression for how this result may be helpful.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Efficient inference in matrix-variate Gaussian models with iid observation noise

Stegle, O., Lippert, C., Mooij, J., Lawrence, N., Borgwardt, K.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 24, pages: 630-638, (Editors: J Shawe-Taylor and RS Zemel and P Bartlett and F Pereira and KQ Weinberger), Twenty-Fifth Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), 2011 (inproceedings)

Abstract
Inference in matrix-variate Gaussian models has major applications for multioutput prediction and joint learning of row and column covariances from matrixvariate data. Here, we discuss an approach for efficient inference in such models that explicitly account for iid observation noise. Computational tractability can be retained by exploiting the Kronecker product between row and column covariance matrices. Using this framework, we show how to generalize the Graphical Lasso in order to learn a sparse inverse covariance between features while accounting for a low-rank confounding covariance between samples. We show practical utility on applications to biology, where we model covariances with more than 100,000 dimensions. We find greater accuracy in recovering biological network structures and are able to better reconstruct the confounders.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Expectation Propagation for the Estimation of Conditional Bivariate Copulas

Hernandez-Lobato, J., Lopez-Paz, D., Gharhamani, Z.

In pages: 2, NIPS, Workshop on Copulas in Machine Learning, 2011 (inproceedings)

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Efficient Similarity Search for Covariance Matrices via the Jensen-Bregman LogDet Divergence

Cherian, A., Sra, S., Banerjee, A., Papanikolopoulos, N.

In IEEE International Conference on Computer Vision, ICCV 2011, pages: 2399-2406, (Editors: DN Metaxas and L Quan and A Sanfeliu and LJ Van Gool), IEEE, 13th International Conference on Computer Vision (ICCV), 2011 (inproceedings)

DOI [BibTex]

DOI [BibTex]


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Introducing the detection of auditory error responses based on BCI technology for passive interaction

Zander, TO., Klippel, DM., Scherer, R.

In Proceedings of the 5th International Brain–Computer Interface Conference, pages: 252-255, (Editors: GR Müller-Putz and R Scherer and M Billinger and A Kreilinger and V Kaiser and C Neuper), Graz: Verlag der Technischen Universität, 2011 (inproceedings)

[BibTex]

[BibTex]


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Generalized Dictionary Learning for Symmetric Positive Definite Matrices with Application to Nearest Neighbor Retrieval

Sra, S., Cherian, A.

In Machine Learning and Knowledge Discovery in Databases - European Conference, ECML PKDD 2011, LNCS vol 6913, Part III, pages: 318-332, (Editors: D Gunopulos and T Hofmann and D Malerba and M Vazirgiannis), Springer, 22th European Conference on Machine Learning (ECML), 2011 (inproceedings)

DOI [BibTex]

DOI [BibTex]


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Restricted boltzmann machines as useful tool for detecting oscillatory eeg components

Balderas, D., Zander, TO., Bachl, F., Neuper, C., Scherer, R.

In Proceedings of the 5th International Brain–Computer Interface Conference, pages: 68-71, (Editors: GR Müller-Putz and R Scherer and M Billinger and A Kkreilinger and V Kaiser and C Neuper), Graz: Verlag der Technischen Universität, 2011 (inproceedings)

[BibTex]

[BibTex]


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Hierarchical Multitask Structured Output Learning for Large-scale Sequence Segmentation

Görnitz, N., Widmer, C., Zeller, G., Kahles, A., Sonnenburg, S., Rätsch, G.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 24, pages: 2690-2698, (Editors: J Shawe-Taylor and RS Zemel and P Bartlett and FCN Pereira and KQ Weinberger), Curran Associates, Inc., Red Hook, NY, USA, Twenty-Fifth Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), 2011 (inproceedings)

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Phase transition in the family of p-resistances

Alamgir, M., von Luxburg, U.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 24, pages: 379-387, (Editors: J Shawe-Taylor and RS Zemel and P Bartlett and F Pereira and KQ Weinberger), Twenty-Fifth Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), 2011 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We study the family of p-resistances on graphs for p ≥ 1. This family generalizes the standard resistance distance. We prove that for any fixed graph, for p=1, the p-resistance coincides with the shortest path distance, for p=2 it coincides with the standard resistance distance, and for p → ∞ it converges to the inverse of the minimal s-t-cut in the graph. Secondly, we consider the special case of random geometric graphs (such as k-nearest neighbor graphs) when the number n of vertices in the graph tends to infinity. We prove that an interesting phase-transition takes place. There exist two critical thresholds p^* and p^** such that if p < p^*, then the p-resistance depends on meaningful global properties of the graph, whereas if p > p^**, it only depends on trivial local quantities and does not convey any useful information. We can explicitly compute the critical values: p^* = 1 + 1/(d-1) and p^** = 1 + 1/(d-2) where d is the dimension of the underlying space (we believe that the fact that there is a small gap between p^* and p^** is an artifact of our proofs. We also relate our findings to Laplacian regularization and suggest to use q-Laplacians as regularizers, where q satisfies 1/p^* + 1/q = 1.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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On Fast Approximate Submodular Minimization

Jegelka, S., Lin, H., Bilmes, J.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 24, pages: 460-468, (Editors: J Shawe-Taylor and RS Zemel and P Bartlett and F Pereira and KQ Weinberger), Twenty-Fifth Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), 2011 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We are motivated by an application to extract a representative subset of machine learning training data and by the poor empirical performance we observe of the popular minimum norm algorithm. In fact, for our application, minimum norm can have a running time of about O(n7) (O(n5) oracle calls). We therefore propose a fast approximate method to minimize arbitrary submodular functions. For a large sub-class of submodular functions, the algorithm is exact. Other submodular functions are iteratively approximated by tight submodular upper bounds, and then repeatedly optimized. We show theoretical properties, and empirical results suggest significant speedups over minimum norm while retaining higher accuracies.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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PAC-Bayesian Analysis of Contextual Bandits

Seldin, Y., Auer, P., Laviolette, F., Shawe-Taylor, J., Ortner, R.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 24, pages: 1683-1691, (Editors: J Shawe-Taylor and RS Zemel and P Bartlett and F Pereira and KQ Weinberger), Twenty-Fifth Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), 2011 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We derive an instantaneous (per-round) data-dependent regret bound for stochastic multiarmed bandits with side information (also known as contextual bandits). The scaling of our regret bound with the number of states (contexts) $N$ goes as $\sqrt{N I_{\rho_t}(S;A)}$, where $I_{\rho_t}(S;A)$ is the mutual information between states and actions (the side information) used by the algorithm at round $t$. If the algorithm uses all the side information, the regret bound scales as $\sqrt{N \ln K}$, where $K$ is the number of actions (arms). However, if the side information $I_{\rho_t}(S;A)$ is not fully used, the regret bound is significantly tighter. In the extreme case, when $I_{\rho_t}(S;A) = 0$, the dependence on the number of states reduces from linear to logarithmic. Our analysis allows to provide the algorithm large amount of side information, let the algorithm to decide which side information is relevant for the task, and penalize the algorithm only for the side information that it is using de facto. We also present an algorithm for multiarmed bandits with side information with computational complexity that is a linear in the number of actions.

PDF PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF PDF Web [BibTex]


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Fast projections onto L1,q-norm balls for grouped feature selection

Sra, S.

In Machine Learning and Knowledge Discovery in Databases - European Conference, ECML PKDD 2011, LNCS vol 6913, Part III, pages: 305-317, (Editors: D Gunopulos and T Hofmann and D Malerba and M Vazirgiannis), Springer, 22th European Conference on Machine Learning (ECML), 2011 (inproceedings)

DOI [BibTex]

DOI [BibTex]


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Kernel Belief Propagation

Song, L., Gretton, A., Bickson, D., Low, Y., Guestrin, C.

In Proceedings of the 14th International Conference on Artificial Intelligence and Statistics, Vol. 15, pages: 707-715, (Editors: G Gordon and D Dunson and M Dudík), JMLR, AISTATS, 2011 (inproceedings)

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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On Causal Discovery with Cyclic Additive Noise Models

Mooij, J., Janzing, D., Schölkopf, B., Heskes, T.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 24, pages: 639-647, (Editors: J Shawe-Taylor and RS Zemel and PL Bartlett and FCN Pereira and KQ Weinberger), Curran Associates, Inc., Red Hook, NY, USA, Twenty-Fifth Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), 2011 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We study a particular class of cyclic causal models, where each variable is a (possibly nonlinear) function of its parents and additive noise. We prove that the causal graph of such models is generically identifiable in the bivariate, Gaussian-noise case. We also propose a method to learn such models from observational data. In the acyclic case, the method reduces to ordinary regression, but in the more challenging cyclic case, an additional term arises in the loss function, which makes it a special case of nonlinear independent component analysis. We illustrate the proposed method on synthetic data.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Additive Gaussian Processes

Duvenaud, D., Nickisch, H., Rasmussen, C.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 24, pages: 226-234, (Editors: J Shawe-Taylor and RS Zemel and P Bartlett and F Pereira and KQ Weinberger), Twenty-Fifth Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), 2011 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We introduce a Gaussian process model of functions which are additive. An additive function is one which decomposes into a sum of low-dimensional functions, each depending on only a subset of the input variables. Additive GPs generalize both Generalized Additive Models, and the standard GP models which use squared-exponential kernels. Hyperparameter learning in this model can be seen as Bayesian Hierarchical Kernel Learning (HKL). We introduce an expressive but tractable parameterization of the kernel function, which allows efficient evaluation of all input interaction terms, whose number is exponential in the input dimension. The additional structure discoverable by this model results in increased interpretability, as well as state-of-the-art predictive power in regression tasks.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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k-NN Regression Adapts to Local Intrinsic Dimension

Kpotufe, S.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 24, pages: 729-737, (Editors: J Shawe-Taylor and RS Zemel and P Bartlett and F Pereira and KQ Weinberger), Twenty-Fifth Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), 2011 (inproceedings)

Abstract
Many nonparametric regressors were recently shown to converge at rates that depend only on the intrinsic dimension of data. These regressors thus escape the curse of dimension when high-dimensional data has low intrinsic dimension (e.g. a manifold). We show that k-NN regression is also adaptive to intrinsic dimension. In particular our rates are local to a query x and depend only on the way masses of balls centered at x vary with radius. Furthermore, we show a simple way to choose k = k(x) locally at any x so as to nearly achieve the minimax rate at x in terms of the unknown intrinsic dimension in the vicinity of x. We also establish that the minimax rate does not depend on a particular choice of metric space or distribution, but rather that this minimax rate holds for any metric space and doubling measure.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Fast Newton-type Methods for Total-Variation with Applications

Barbero, A., Sra, S.

In Proceedings of the 28th International Conference on Machine Learning, ICML 2011, pages: 313-320, (Editors: L Getoor and T Scheffer), Omnipress, 28th International Conference on Machine Learning (ICML), 2011 (inproceedings)

[BibTex]

[BibTex]


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Parallel Gibbs Sampling: From Colored Fields to Thin Junction Trees

Gonzalez, J., Low, Y., Gretton, A., Guestrin, C.

In Proceedings of the 14th International Conference on Artificial Intelligence and Statistics, Vol. 15, pages: 324-332, (Editors: G Gordon and D Dunson and M Dudík), JMLR, AISTATS, 2011 (inproceedings)

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Access to Unlabeled Data can Speed up Prediction Time

Urner, R., Shalev-Shwartz, S., Ben-David, S.

In Proceedings of the 28th International Conference on Machine Learning, pages: 641-648, ICML, 2011 (inproceedings)

link (url) [BibTex]

link (url) [BibTex]


Thumb xl problem
Recovering Intrinsic Images with a Global Sparsity Prior on Reflectance

Gehler, P., Rother, C., Kiefel, M., Zhang, L., Schölkopf, B.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 24, pages: 765-773, (Editors: Shawe-Taylor, John and Zemel, Richard S. and Bartlett, Peter L. and Pereira, Fernando C. N. and Weinberger, Kilian Q.), Curran Associates, Inc., Red Hook, NY, USA, Twenty-Fifth Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), 2011 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We address the challenging task of decoupling material properties from lighting properties given a single image. In the last two decades virtually all works have concentrated on exploiting edge information to address this problem. We take a different route by introducing a new prior on reflectance, that models reflectance values as being drawn from a sparse set of basis colors. This results in a Random Field model with global, latent variables (basis colors) and pixel-accurate output reflectance values. We show that without edge information high-quality results can be achieved, that are on par with methods exploiting this source of information. Finally, we are able to improve on state-of-the-art results by integrating edge information into our model. We believe that our new approach is an excellent starting point for future developments in this field.

website + code pdf poster Project Page Project Page [BibTex]

website + code pdf poster Project Page Project Page [BibTex]

2005


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Kernel ICA for Large Scale Problems

Jegelka, S., Gretton, A., Achlioptas, D.

In pages: -, NIPS Workshop on Large Scale Kernel Machines, December 2005 (inproceedings)

Web [BibTex]

2005

Web [BibTex]


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Infinite dimensional exponential families by reproducing kernel Hilbert spaces

Fukumizu, K.

In IGAIA 2005, pages: 324-333, 2nd International Symposium on Information Geometry and its Applications, December 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
The purpose of this paper is to propose a method of constructing exponential families of Hilbert manifold, on which estimation theory can be built. Although there have been works on infinite dimensional exponential families of Banach manifolds (Pistone and Sempi, 1995; Gibilisco and Pistone, 1998; Pistone and Rogantin, 1999), they are not appropriate to discuss statistical estimation with finite number of samples; the likelihood function with finite samples is not continuous on the manifold. In this paper we use a reproducing kernel Hilbert space as a functional space for constructing an exponential manifold. A reproducing kernel Hilbert space is dened as a Hilbert space of functions such that evaluation of a function at an arbitrary point is a continuous functional on the Hilbert space. Since we can discuss the value of a function with this space, it is very natural to use a manifold associated with a reproducing kernel Hilbert space as a basis of estimation theory. We focus on the maximum likelihood estimation (MLE) with the exponential manifold of a reproducing kernel Hilbert space. As in many non-parametric estimation methods, straightforward extension of MLE to an infinite dimensional exponential manifold suffers the problem of ill-posedness caused by the fact that the estimator should be chosen from the infinite dimensional space with only finite number of constraints given by the data. To solve this problem, a pseudo-maximum likelihood method is proposed by restricting the infinite dimensional manifold to a series of finite dimensional submanifolds, which enlarge as the number of samples increases. Some asymptotic results in the limit of infinite samples are shown, including the consistency of the pseudo-MLE.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Shortest-path kernels on graphs

Borgwardt, KM., Kriegel, H-P.

In pages: 74-81, IEEE Computer Society, Los Alamitos, CA, USA, Fifth International Conference on Data Mining (ICDM), November 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
Data mining algorithms are facing the challenge to deal with an increasing number of complex objects. For graph data, a whole toolbox of data mining algorithms becomes available by defining a kernel function on instances of graphs. Graph kernels based on walks, subtrees and cycles in graphs have been proposed so far. As a general problem, these kernels are either computationally expensive or limited in their expressiveness. We try to overcome this problem by defining expressive graph kernels which are based on paths. As the computation of all paths and longest paths in a graph is NP-hard, we propose graph kernels based on shortest paths. These kernels are computable in polynomial time, retain expressivity and are still positive definite. In experiments on classification of graph models of proteins, our shortest-path kernels show significantly higher classification accuracy than walk-based kernels.

Web DOI [BibTex]

Web DOI [BibTex]


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Training Support Vector Machines with Multiple Equality Constraints

Kienzle, W., Schölkopf, B.

In Proceedings of the 16th European Conference on Machine Learning, Lecture Notes in Computer Science, Vol. 3720, pages: 182-193, (Editors: JG Carbonell and J Siekmann), Springer, Berlin, Germany, ECML, November 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
In this paper we present a primal-dual decomposition algorithm for support vector machine training. As with existing methods that use very small working sets (such as Sequential Minimal Optimization (SMO), Successive Over-Relaxation (SOR) or the Kernel Adatron (KA)), our method scales well, is straightforward to implement, and does not require an external QP solver. Unlike SMO, SOR and KA, the method is applicable to a large number of SVM formulations regardless of the number of equality constraints involved. The effectiveness of our algorithm is demonstrated on a more difficult SVM variant in this respect, namely semi-parametric support vector regression.

PDF DOI [BibTex]

PDF DOI [BibTex]


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Measuring Statistical Dependence with Hilbert-Schmidt Norms

Gretton, A., Bousquet, O., Smola, A., Schoelkopf, B.

In Algorithmic Learning Theory, Lecture Notes in Computer Science, Vol. 3734, pages: 63-78, (Editors: S Jain and H-U Simon and E Tomita), Springer, Berlin, Germany, 16th International Conference ALT, October 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We propose an independence criterion based on the eigenspectrum of covariance operators in reproducing kernel Hilbert spaces (RKHSs), consisting of an empirical estimate of the Hilbert-Schmidt norm of the cross-covariance operator (we term this a Hilbert-Schmidt Independence Criterion, or HSIC). This approach has several advantages, compared with previous kernel-based independence criteria. First, the empirical estimate is simpler than any other kernel dependence test, and requires no user-defined regularisation. Second, there is a clearly defined population quantity which the empirical estimate approaches in the large sample limit, with exponential convergence guaranteed between the two: this ensures that independence tests based on {methodname} do not suffer from slow learning rates. Finally, we show in the context of independent component analysis (ICA) that the performance of HSIC is competitive with that of previously published kernel-based criteria, and of other recently published ICA methods.

PDF DOI [BibTex]

PDF DOI [BibTex]


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An Analysis of the Anti-Learning Phenomenon for the Class Symmetric Polyhedron

Kowalczyk, A., Chapelle, O.

In Algorithmic Learning Theory: 16th International Conference, pages: 78-92, Algorithmic Learning Theory, October 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
This paper deals with an unusual phenomenon where most machine learning algorithms yield good performance on the training set but systematically worse than random performance on the test set. This has been observed so far for some natural data sets and demonstrated for some synthetic data sets when the classification rule is learned from a small set of training samples drawn from some high dimensional space. The initial analysis presented in this paper shows that anti-learning is a property of data sets and is quite distinct from overfitting of a training data. Moreover, the analysis leads to a specification of some machine learning procedures which can overcome anti-learning and generate ma- chines able to classify training and test data consistently.

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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A new methodology for robot controller design

Peters, J., Peters, J., Mistry, M., Udwadia, F.

In Proceedings of the 5th ASME International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference (IDETC‘05), 5, pages: 1067-1076 , ASME, New York, NY, USA, 5th ASME International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference (IDETC-MSNDC), September 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
Gauss' principle of least constraint and its generalizations have provided a useful insights for the development of tracking controllers for mechanical systems [1]. Using this concept, we present a novel methodology for the design of a specific class of robot controllers. With our new framework, we demonstrate that well-known and also several novel nonlinear robot control laws can be derived from this generic framework, and show experimental verifications on a Sarcos Master Arm robot for some of these controllers. We believe that the suggested approach unifies and simplifies the design of optimal nonlinear control laws for robots obeying rigid body dynamics equations, both with or without external constraints, holonomic or nonholonomic constraints, with over-actuation or underactuation, as well as open-chain and closed-chain kinematics.

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]


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EEG-Based Mental Task Classification: Linear and Nonlinear Classification of Movement Imagery

Athena Akrami, A.

In EMBS, 27th Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society (EMBS), September 1-4,, Shanghai, China (Accepted), September 2005 (inproceedings) Accepted

Abstract
Abstract—Use of EEG signals as a channel of communication between men and machines represents one of the current challenges in signal theory research. The principal element of such a communication system, known as a “Brain-Computer Interface,” is the interpretation of the EEG signals related to the characteristic parameters of brain electrical activity. Our goal in this work was extracting quantitative changes in the EEG due to movement imagination. Subject&amp;lsquo;s EEG was recorded while he performed left or right hand movement imagination. Different feature sets extracted from EEG were used as inputs into linear, Neural Network and HMM classifiers for the purpose of imagery movement mental task classification. The results indicate that applying linear classifier to 5 frequency features of asymmetry signal produced from channel C3 and C4 can provide a very high classification accuracy percentage as a simple classifier with small number of features comparing to other feature sets.

[BibTex]

[BibTex]


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Building Sparse Large Margin Classifiers

Wu, M., Schölkopf, B., BakIr, G.

In Proceedings of the 22nd International Conference on Machine Learning, pages: 996-1003, (Editors: L De Raedt and S Wrobel ), ACM, New York, NY, USA, ICML , August 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
This paper presents an approach to build Sparse Large Margin Classifiers (SLMC) by adding one more constraint to the standard Support Vector Machine (SVM) training problem. The added constraint explicitly controls the sparseness of the classifier and an approach is provided to solve the formulated problem. When considering the dual of this problem, it can be seen that building an SLMC is equivalent to constructing an SVM with a modified kernel function. Further analysis of this kernel function indicates that the proposed approach essentially finds a discriminating subspace that can be spanned by a small number of vectors, and in this subspace different classes of data are linearly well separated. Experimental results over several classification benchmarks show that in most cases the proposed approach outperforms the state-of-art sparse learning algorithms.

PDF DOI [BibTex]

PDF DOI [BibTex]


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A unifying methodology for the control of robotic systems

Peters, J., Mistry, M., Udwadia, F., Cory, R., Nakanishi, J., Schaal, S.

In Proceedings of the 2005 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS 2005), pages: 1824-1831, IEEE Operations Center, Piscataway, NJ, USA, 2005 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS), August 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
Recently, R. E. Udwadia (2003) suggested to derive tracking controllers for mechanical systems using a generalization of Gauss&lsquo; principle of least constraint. This method allows us to reformulate control problems as a special class of optimal control. We take this line of reasoning one step further and demonstrate that well-known and also several novel nonlinear robot control laws can be derived from this generic methodology. We show experimental verifications on a Sarcos Master Arm robot for some of the derived controllers. We believe that the suggested approach offers a promising unification and simplification of nonlinear control law design for robots obeying rigid body dynamics equations, both with or without external constraints, with over-actuation or underactuation, as well as open-chain and closed-chain kinematics.

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]


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Learning from Labeled and Unlabeled Data on a Directed Graph

Zhou, D., Huang, J., Schölkopf, B.

In Proceedings of the 22nd International Conference on Machine Learning, pages: 1041 -1048, (Editors: L De Raedt and S Wrobel), ACM, New York, NY, USA, ICML, August 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We propose a general framework for learning from labeled and unlabeled data on a directed graph in which the structure of the graph including the directionality of the edges is considered. The time complexity of the algorithm derived from this framework is nearly linear due to recently developed numerical techniques. In the absence of labeled instances, this framework can be utilized as a spectral clustering method for directed graphs, which generalizes the spectral clustering approach for undirected graphs. We have applied our framework to real-world web classification problems and obtained encouraging results.

PostScript PDF [BibTex]

PostScript PDF [BibTex]


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Regularization on Discrete Spaces

Zhou, D., Schölkopf, B.

In Pattern Recognition, Lecture Notes in Computer Science, Vol. 3663, pages: 361-368, (Editors: WG Kropatsch and R Sablatnig and A Hanbury), Springer, Berlin, Germany, 27th DAGM Symposium, August 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We consider the classification problem on a finite set of objects. Some of them are labeled, and the task is to predict the labels of the remaining unlabeled ones. Such an estimation problem is generally referred to as transductive inference. It is well-known that many meaningful inductive or supervised methods can be derived from a regularization framework, which minimizes a loss function plus a regularization term. In the same spirit, we propose a general discrete regularization framework defined on finite object sets, which can be thought of as the discrete analogue of classical regularization theory. A family of transductive inference schemes is then systemically derived from the framework, including our earlier algorithm for transductive inference, with which we obtained encouraging results on many practical classification problems. The discrete regularization framework is built on the discrete analysis and geometry developed by ourselves, in which a number of discrete differential operators of various orders are constructed, which can be thought of as the discrete analogue of their counterparts in the continuous case.

PDF PostScript DOI [BibTex]

PDF PostScript DOI [BibTex]


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Large Margin Non-Linear Embedding

Zien, A., Candela, J.

In ICML 2005, pages: 1065-1072, (Editors: De Raedt, L. , S. Wrobel), ACM Press, New York, NY, USA, 22nd International Conference on Machine Learning, August 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
It is common in classification methods to first place data in a vector space and then learn decision boundaries. We propose reversing that process: for fixed decision boundaries, we ``learn&amp;amp;lsquo;&amp;amp;lsquo; the location of the data. This way we (i) do not need a metric (or even stronger structure) -- pairwise dissimilarities suffice; and additionally (ii) produce low-dimensional embeddings that can be analyzed visually. We achieve this by combining an entropy-based embedding method with an entropy-based version of semi-supervised logistic regression. We present results for clustering and semi-supervised classification.

PDF PostScript Web DOI [BibTex]

PDF PostScript Web DOI [BibTex]


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Triangle Fixing Algorithms for the Metric Nearness Problem

Dhillon, I., Sra, S., Tropp, J.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 17, pages: 361-368, (Editors: Saul, L.K. , Y. Weiss, L. Bottou), MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, USA, Eighteenth Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), July 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
Various problems in machine learning, databases, and statistics involve pairwise distances among a set of objects. It is often desirable for these distances to satisfy the properties of a metric, especially the triangle inequality. Applications where metric data is useful include clustering, classification, metric-based indexing, and approximation algorithms for various graph problems. This paper presents the Metric Nearness Problem: Given a dissimilarity matrix, find the "nearest" matrix of distances that satisfy the triangle inequalities. For lp nearness measures, this paper develops efficient triangle fixing algorithms that compute globally optimal solutions by exploiting the inherent structure of the problem. Empirically, the algorithms have time and storage costs that are linear in the number of triangle constraints. The methods can also be easily parallelized for additional speed.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Face Detection: Efficient and Rank Deficient

Kienzle, W., BakIr, G., Franz, M., Schölkopf, B.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 17, pages: 673-680, (Editors: LK Saul and Y Weiss and L Bottou), MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, USA, 18th Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), July 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
This paper proposes a method for computing fast approximations to support vector decision functions in the field of object detection. In the present approach we are building on an existing algorithm where the set of support vectors is replaced by a smaller, so-called reduced set of synthesized input space points. In contrast to the existing method that finds the reduced set via unconstrained optimization, we impose a structural constraint on the synthetic points such that the resulting approximations can be evaluated via separable filters. For applications that require scanning an entire image, this decreases the computational complexity of a scan by a significant amount. We present experimental results on a standard face detection database.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Methods Towards Invasive Human Brain Computer Interfaces

Lal, T., Hinterberger, T., Widman, G., Schröder, M., Hill, J., Rosenstiel, W., Elger, C., Schölkopf, B., Birbaumer, N.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 17, pages: 737-744, (Editors: LK Saul and Y Weiss and L Bottou), MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, USA, 18th Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), July 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
During the last ten years there has been growing interest in the development of Brain Computer Interfaces (BCIs). The field has mainly been driven by the needs of completely paralyzed patients to communicate. With a few exceptions, most human BCIs are based on extracranial electroencephalography (EEG). However, reported bit rates are still low. One reason for this is the low signal-to-noise ratio of the EEG. We are currently investigating if BCIs based on electrocorticography (ECoG) are a viable alternative. In this paper we present the method and examples of intracranial EEG recordings of three epilepsy patients with electrode grids placed on the motor cortex. The patients were asked to repeatedly imagine movements of two kinds, e.g., tongue or finger movements. We analyze the classifiability of the data using Support Vector Machines (SVMs) and Recursive Channel Elimination (RCE).

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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A Machine Learning Approach to Conjoint Analysis

Chapelle, O., Harchaoui, Z.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 17, pages: 257-264, (Editors: Saul, L.K. , Y. Weiss, L. Bottou), MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, USA, Eighteenth Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), July 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
Choice-based conjoint analysis builds models of consumers preferences over products with answers gathered in questionnaires. Our main goal is to bring tools from the machine learning community to solve more efficiently this problem. Thus, we propose two algorithms to estimate quickly and accurately consumer preferences.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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An Auditory Paradigm for Brain-Computer Interfaces

Hill, N., Lal, T., Bierig, K., Birbaumer, N., Schölkopf, B.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 17, pages: 569-576, (Editors: LK Saul and Y Weiss and L Bottou), MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, USA, 18th Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), July 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
Motivated by the particular problems involved in communicating with "locked-in" paralysed patients, we aim to develop a brain-computer interface that uses auditory stimuli. We describe a paradigm that allows a user to make a binary decision by focusing attention on one of two concurrent auditory stimulus sequences. Using Support Vector Machine classification and Recursive Channel Elimination on the independent components of averaged event-related potentials, we show that an untrained user's EEG data can be classified with an encouragingly high level of accuracy. This suggests that it is possible for users to modulate EEG signals in a single trial by the conscious direction of attention, well enough to be useful in BCI.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Matrix Exponential Gradient Updates for On-line Learning and Bregman Projection

Tsuda, K., Rätsch, G., Warmuth, M.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 17, pages: 1425-1432, (Editors: Saul, L.K. , Y. Weiss, L. Bottou), MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, USA, Eighteenth Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), July 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We address the problem of learning a symmetric positive definite matrix. The central issue is to design parameter updates that preserve positive definiteness. Our updates are motivated with the von Neumann divergence. Rather than treating the most general case, we focus on two key applications that exemplify our methods: On-line learning with a simple square loss and finding a symmetric positive definite matrix subject to symmetric linear constraints. The updates generalize the Exponentiated Gradient (EG) update and AdaBoost, respectively: the parameter is now a symmetric positive definite matrix of trace one instead of a probability vector (which in this context is a diagonal positive definite matrix with trace one). The generalized updates use matrix logarithms and exponentials to preserve positive definiteness. Most importantly, we show how the analysis of each algorithm generalizes to the non-diagonal case. We apply both new algorithms, called the Matrix Exponentiated Gradient (MEG) update and DefiniteBoost, to learn a kernel matrix from distance measurements.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]