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2005


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Splines with non positive kernels

Canu, S., Ong, CS., Mary, X.

In 5th International ISAAC Congress, pages: 1-10, (Editors: Begehr, H. G.W., F. Nicolosi), World Scientific, Singapore, 5th International ISAAC Congress, July 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
Non parametric regressions methods can be presented in two main clusters. The one of smoothing splines methods requiring positive kernels and the other one known as Nonparametric Kernel Regression allowing the use of non positive kernels such as the Epanechnikov kernel. We propose a generalization of the smoothing spline method to include kernels which are still symmetric but not positive semi definite (they are called indefinite). The general relationship between smoothing spline, Reproducing Kernel Hilbert Spaces and positive kernels no longer exists with indefinite kernel. Instead they are associated with functional spaces called Reproducing Kernel Krein Spaces (RKKS) embedded with an indefinite inner product and thus not directly associated with a norm. Smothing splines in RKKS have many of the interesting properties of splines in RKHS, such as orthogon ality, projection, representer theorem and generalization bounds. We show that smoothing splines can be defined in RKKS as the regularized solution of the interpolation problem. Since no norm is available in a RKKS, Tikhonov regularization cannot be defined. Instead, we proposed to use iterative methods of conjugate gradient type with early stopping as regularization mechanism. Several iterative algorithms were collected which can be used to solve the optimization problems associated with learning in indefinite spaces. Some preliminary experiments with indefinite kernels for spline smoothing are reported revealing the computational efficiency of the approach.

PDF Web [BibTex]

2005

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Kernel Methods for Implicit Surface Modeling

Schölkopf, B., Giesen, J., Spalinger, S.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 17, pages: 1193-1200, (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
We describe methods for computing an implicit model of a hypersurface that is given only by a finite sampling. The methods work by mapping the sample points into a reproducing kernel Hilbert space and then determining regions in terms of hyperplanes.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Machine-Learning Approaches to BCI in Tübingen

Bensch, M., Bogdan, M., Hill, N., Lal, T., Rosenstiel, W., Schölkopf, B., Schröder, M.

Brain-Computer Interface Technology, June 2005, Talk given by NJH. (talk)

[BibTex]

[BibTex]


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Generalized Nonnegative Matrix Approximations using Bregman Divergences

Sra, S., Dhillon, I.

Univ. of Texas at Austin, June 2005 (techreport)

[BibTex]

[BibTex]


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Learning Motor Primitives with Reinforcement Learning

Peters, J., Schaal, S.

ROBOTICS Workshop on Modular Foundations for Control and Perception, June 2005 (talk)

Web [BibTex]

Web [BibTex]


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Measuring Statistical Dependence with Hilbert-Schmidt Norms

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

(140), Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Tübingen, Germany, June 2005 (techreport)

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 HSIC 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 [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Combining Local and Global Image Features for Object Class Recognition

Lisin, DA., Mattar, MA., Blaschko, MB., Benfield, MC., Learned-Miller, EG.

In CVPR, pages: 47-47, CVPR, June 2005 (inproceedings)

[BibTex]

[BibTex]


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Consistency of Kernel Canonical Correlation Analysis

Fukumizu, K., Bach, F., Gretton, A.

(942), Institute of Statistical Mathematics, 4-6-7 Minami-azabu, Minato-ku, Tokyo 106-8569 Japan, June 2005 (techreport)

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Motor Skill Learning for Humanoid Robots

Peters, J.

First Conference Undergraduate Computer Sciences and Informations Sciences (CS/IS), May 2005 (talk)

[BibTex]

[BibTex]


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To apply score function difference based ICA algorithms to high-dimensional data

Zhang, K., Chan, L.

In Proceedings of the 13th European Symposium on Artificial Neural Networks (ESANN 2005), pages: 291-297, 13th European Symposium on Artificial Neural Networks (ESANN), April 2005 (inproceedings)

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Joint Regularization

Borgwardt, KM., Guttman, O., Vishwanathan, SVN., Smola, AJ.

In pages: 455-460, (Editors: Verleysen, M.), d-side, Evere, Belgium, 13th European Symposium on Artificial Neural Networks (ESANN), April 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We present a principled method to combine kernels under joint regularization constraints. Central to our method is an extension of the representer theorem for handling multiple joint regularization constraints. Experimental evidence shows the feasibility of our approach.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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EEG Source Localization for Brain-Computer-Interfaces

Grosse-Wentrup, M.

In 2nd International IEEE EMBS Conference on Neural Engineering, pages: 128-131, IEEE, 2nd International IEEE EMBS Conference on Neural Engineering, March 2005 (inproceedings)

PDF DOI [BibTex]

PDF DOI [BibTex]


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Active Learning for Parzen Window Classifier

Chapelle, O.

In AISTATS 2005, pages: 49-56, (Editors: Cowell, R. , Z. Ghahramani), Tenth International Workshop on Artificial Intelligence and Statistics (AI & Statistics), January 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
The problem of active learning is approached in this paper by minimizing directly an estimate of the expected test error. The main difficulty in this ``optimal'' strategy is that output probabilities need to be estimated accurately. We suggest here different methods for estimating those efficiently. In this context, the Parzen window classifier is considered because it is both simple and probabilistic. The analysis of experimental results highlights that regularization is a key ingredient for this strategy.

Web [BibTex]

Web [BibTex]


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Semi-Supervised Classification by Low Density Separation

Chapelle, O., Zien, A.

In AISTATS 2005, pages: 57-64, (Editors: Cowell, R. , Z. Ghahramani), Tenth International Workshop on Artificial Intelligence and Statistics (AI & Statistics), January 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We believe that the cluster assumption is key to successful semi-supervised learning. Based on this, we propose three semi-supervised algorithms: 1. deriving graph-based distances that emphazise low density regions between clusters, followed by training a standard SVM; 2. optimizing the Transductive SVM objective function, which places the decision boundary in low density regions, by gradient descent; 3. combining the first two to make maximum use of the cluster assumption. We compare with state of the art algorithms and demonstrate superior accuracy for the latter two methods.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Automatic In Situ Identification of Plankton

Blaschko, MB., Holness, G., Mattar, MA., Lisin, D., Utgoff, PE., Hanson, AR., Schultz, H., Riseman, EM., Sieracki, ME., Balch, WM., Tupper, B.

In WACV, pages: 79 , WACV, January 2005 (inproceedings)

[BibTex]

[BibTex]


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Kernel Constrained Covariance for Dependence Measurement

Gretton, A., Smola, A., Bousquet, O., Herbrich, R., Belitski, A., Augath, M., Murayama, Y., Pauls, J., Schölkopf, B., Logothetis, N.

In Proceedings of the 10th International Workshop on Artificial Intelligence and Statistics, pages: 112-119, (Editors: R Cowell, R and Z Ghahramani), AISTATS, January 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We discuss reproducing kernel Hilbert space (RKHS)-based measures of statistical dependence, with emphasis on constrained covariance (COCO), a novel criterion to test dependence of random variables. We show that COCO is a test for independence if and only if the associated RKHSs are universal. That said, no independence test exists that can distinguish dependent and independent random variables in all circumstances. Dependent random variables can result in a COCO which is arbitrarily close to zero when the source densities are highly non-smooth. All current kernel-based independence tests share this behaviour. We demonstrate exponential convergence between the population and empirical COCO. Finally, we use COCO as a measure of joint neural activity between voxels in MRI recordings of the macaque monkey, and compare the results to the mutual information and the correlation. We also show the effect of removing breathing artefacts from the MRI recording.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Hilbertian Metrics and Positive Definite Kernels on Probability Measures

Hein, M., Bousquet, O.

In AISTATS 2005, pages: 136-143, (Editors: Cowell, R. , Z. Ghahramani), Tenth International Workshop on Artificial Intelligence and Statistics (AI & Statistics), January 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We investigate the problem of defining Hilbertian metrics resp. positive definite kernels on probability measures, continuing previous work. This type of kernels has shown very good results in text classification and has a wide range of possible applications. In this paper we extend the two-parameter family of Hilbertian metrics of Topsoe such that it now includes all commonly used Hilbertian metrics on probability measures. This allows us to do model selection among these metrics in an elegant and unified way. Second we investigate further our approach to incorporate similarity information of the probability space into the kernel. The analysis provides a better understanding of these kernels and gives in some cases a more efficient way to compute them. Finally we compare all proposed kernels in two text and two image classification problems.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Kernel Constrained Covariance for Dependence Measurement

Gretton, A., Smola, A., Bousquet, O., Herbrich, R., Belitski, A., Augath, M., Murayama, Y., Schölkopf, B., Logothetis, N.

AISTATS, January 2005 (talk)

Abstract
We discuss reproducing kernel Hilbert space (RKHS)-based measures of statistical dependence, with emphasis on constrained covariance (COCO), a novel criterion to test dependence of random variables. We show that COCO is a test for independence if and only if the associated RKHSs are universal. That said, no independence test exists that can distinguish dependent and independent random variables in all circumstances. Dependent random variables can result in a COCO which is arbitrarily close to zero when the source densities are highly non-smooth. All current kernel-based independence tests share this behaviour. We demonstrate exponential convergence between the population and empirical COCO. Finally, we use COCO as a measure of joint neural activity between voxels in MRI recordings of the macaque monkey, and compare the results to the mutual information and the correlation. We also show the effect of removing breathing artefacts from the MRI recording.

PostScript [BibTex]

PostScript [BibTex]


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Intrinsic Dimensionality Estimation of Submanifolds in Euclidean space

Hein, M., Audibert, Y.

In Proceedings of the 22nd International Conference on Machine Learning, pages: 289 , (Editors: De Raedt, L. , S. Wrobel), ICML Bonn, 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We present a new method to estimate the intrinsic dimensionality of a submanifold M in Euclidean space from random samples. The method is based on the convergence rates of a certain U-statistic on the manifold. We solve at least partially the question of the choice of the scale of the data. Moreover the proposed method is easy to implement, can handle large data sets and performs very well even for small sample sizes. We compare the proposed method to two standard estimators on several artificial as well as real data sets.

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Large Scale Genomic Sequence SVM Classifiers

Sonnenburg, S., Rätsch, G., Schölkopf, B.

In Proceedings of the 22nd International Conference on Machine Learning, pages: 849-856, (Editors: L De Raedt and S Wrobel), ACM, New York, NY, USA, ICML, 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
In genomic sequence analysis tasks like splice site recognition or promoter identification, large amounts of training sequences are available, and indeed needed to achieve sufficiently high classification performances. In this work we study two recently proposed and successfully used kernels, namely the Spectrum kernel and the Weighted Degree kernel (WD). In particular, we suggest several extensions using Suffix Trees and modi cations of an SMO-like SVM training algorithm in order to accelerate the training of the SVMs and their evaluation on test sequences. Our simulations show that for the spectrum kernel and WD kernel, large scale SVM training can be accelerated by factors of 20 and 4 times, respectively, while using much less memory (e.g. no kernel caching). The evaluation on new sequences is often several thousand times faster using the new techniques (depending on the number of Support Vectors). Our method allows us to train on sets as large as one million sequences.

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Joint Kernel Maps

Weston, J., Schölkopf, B., Bousquet, O.

In Proceedings of the 8th InternationalWork-Conference on Artificial Neural Networks, LNCS 3512, pages: 176-191, (Editors: J Cabestany and A Prieto and F Sandoval), Springer, Berlin Heidelberg, Germany, IWANN, 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We develop a methodology for solving high dimensional dependency estimation problems between pairs of data types, which is viable in the case where the output of interest has very high dimension, e.g., thousands of dimensions. This is achieved by mapping the objects into continuous or discrete spaces, using joint kernels. Known correlations between input and output can be defined by such kernels, some of which can maintain linearity in the outputs to provide simple (closed form) pre-images. We provide examples of such kernels and empirical results.

PostScript DOI [BibTex]

PostScript DOI [BibTex]


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Analysis of Some Methods for Reduced Rank Gaussian Process Regression

Quinonero Candela, J., Rasmussen, C.

In Switching and Learning in Feedback Systems, pages: 98-127, (Editors: Murray Smith, R. , R. Shorten), Springer, Berlin, Germany, European Summer School on Multi-Agent Control, 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
While there is strong motivation for using Gaussian Processes (GPs) due to their excellent performance in regression and classification problems, their computational complexity makes them impractical when the size of the training set exceeds a few thousand cases. This has motivated the recent proliferation of a number of cost-effective approximations to GPs, both for classification and for regression. In this paper we analyze one popular approximation to GPs for regression: the reduced rank approximation. While generally GPs are equivalent to infinite linear models, we show that Reduced Rank Gaussian Processes (RRGPs) are equivalent to finite sparse linear models. We also introduce the concept of degenerate GPs and show that they correspond to inappropriate priors. We show how to modify the RRGP to prevent it from being degenerate at test time. Training RRGPs consists both in learning the covariance function hyperparameters and the support set. We propose a method for learning hyperparameters for a given support set. We also review the Sparse Greedy GP (SGGP) approximation (Smola and Bartlett, 2001), which is a way of learning the support set for given hyperparameters based on approximating the posterior. We propose an alternative method to the SGGP that has better generalization capabilities. Finally we make experiments to compare the different ways of training a RRGP. We provide some Matlab code for learning RRGPs.

PDF PDF DOI [BibTex]

PDF PDF DOI [BibTex]


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Approximate Inference for Robust Gaussian Process Regression

Kuss, M., Pfingsten, T., Csato, L., Rasmussen, C.

(136), Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Tübingen, Germany, 2005 (techreport)

Abstract
Gaussian process (GP) priors have been successfully used in non-parametric Bayesian regression and classification models. Inference can be performed analytically only for the regression model with Gaussian noise. For all other likelihood models inference is intractable and various approximation techniques have been proposed. In recent years expectation-propagation (EP) has been developed as a general method for approximate inference. This article provides a general summary of how expectation-propagation can be used for approximate inference in Gaussian process models. Furthermore we present a case study describing its implementation for a new robust variant of Gaussian process regression. To gain further insights into the quality of the EP approximation we present experiments in which we compare to results obtained by Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) sampling.

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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From Graphs to Manifolds - Weak and Strong Pointwise Consistency of Graph Laplacians

Hein, M., Audibert, J., von Luxburg, U.

In Proceedings of the 18th Conference on Learning Theory (COLT), pages: 470-485, Conference on Learning Theory, 2005, Student Paper Award (inproceedings)

Abstract
In the machine learning community it is generally believed that graph Laplacians corresponding to a finite sample of data points converge to a continuous Laplace operator if the sample size increases. Even though this assertion serves as a justification for many Laplacian-based algorithms, so far only some aspects of this claim have been rigorously proved. In this paper we close this gap by establishing the strong pointwise consistency of a family of graph Laplacians with data-dependent weights to some weighted Laplace operator. Our investigation also includes the important case where the data lies on a submanifold of $R^d$.

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Propagating Distributions on a Hypergraph by Dual Information Regularization

Tsuda, K.

In Proceedings of the 22nd International Conference on Machine Learning, pages: 921 , (Editors: De Raedt, L. , S. Wrobel), ICML Bonn, 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
In the information regularization framework by Corduneanu and Jaakkola (2005), the distributions of labels are propagated on a hypergraph for semi-supervised learning. The learning is efficiently done by a Blahut-Arimoto-like two step algorithm, but, unfortunately, one of the steps cannot be solved in a closed form. In this paper, we propose a dual version of information regularization, which is considered as more natural in terms of information geometry. Our learning algorithm has two steps, each of which can be solved in a closed form. Also it can be naturally applied to exponential family distributions such as Gaussians. In experiments, our algorithm is applied to protein classification based on a metabolic network and known functional categories.

[BibTex]

[BibTex]


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A Brain Computer Interface with Online Feedback based on Magnetoencephalography

Lal, T., Schröder, M., Hill, J., Preissl, H., Hinterberger, T., Mellinger, J., Bogdan, M., Rosenstiel, W., Hofmann, T., Birbaumer, N., Schölkopf, B.

In Proceedings of the 22nd International Conference on Machine Learning, pages: 465-472, (Editors: L De Raedt and S Wrobel), ACM, New York, NY, USA, ICML, 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
The aim of this paper is to show that machine learning techniques can be used to derive a classifying function for human brain signal data measured by magnetoencephalography (MEG), for the use in a brain computer interface (BCI). This is especially helpful for evaluating quickly whether a BCI approach based on electroencephalography, on which training may be slower due to lower signalto- noise ratio, is likely to succeed. We apply recursive channel elimination and regularized SVMs to the experimental data of ten healthy subjects performing a motor imagery task. Four subjects were able to use a trained classifier together with a decision tree interface to write a short name. Further analysis gives evidence that the proposed imagination task is suboptimal for the possible extension to a multiclass interface. To the best of our knowledge this paper is the first working online BCI based on MEG recordings and is therefore a “proof of concept”.

PDF PDF [BibTex]

PDF PDF [BibTex]


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Healing the Relevance Vector Machine through Augmentation

Rasmussen, CE., Candela, JQ.

In Proceedings of the 22nd International Conference on Machine Learning, pages: 689 , (Editors: De Raedt, L. , S. Wrobel), ICML, 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
The Relevance Vector Machine (RVM) is a sparse approximate Bayesian kernel method. It provides full predictive distributions for test cases. However, the predictive uncertainties have the unintuitive property, that emph{they get smaller the further you move away from the training cases}. We give a thorough analysis. Inspired by the analogy to non-degenerate Gaussian Processes, we suggest augmentation to solve the problem. The purpose of the resulting model, RVM*, is primarily to corroborate the theoretical and experimental analysis. Although RVM* could be used in practical applications, it is no longer a truly sparse model. Experiments show that sparsity comes at the expense of worse predictive distributions.

PDF PostScript [BibTex]

PDF PostScript [BibTex]


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Maximum-Margin Feature Combination for Detection and Categorization

BakIr, G., Wu, M., Eichhorn, J.

Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Tübingen, Germany, 2005 (techreport)

Abstract
In this paper we are concerned with the optimal combination of features of possibly different types for detection and estimation tasks in machine vision. We propose to combine features such that the resulting classifier maximizes the margin between classes. In contrast to existing approaches which are non-convex and/or generative we propose to use a discriminative model leading to convex problem formulation and complexity control. Furthermore we assert that decision functions should not compare apples and oranges by comparing features of different types directly. Instead we propose to combine different similarity measures for each different feature type. Furthermore we argue that the question: ”Which feature type is more discriminative for task X?” is ill-posed and show empirically that the answer to this question might depend on the complexity of the decision function.

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Long Term Prediction of Product Quality in a Glass Manufacturing Process Using a Kernel Based Approach

Jung, T., Herrera, L., Schölkopf, B.

In Proceedings of the 8th International Work-Conferenceon Artificial Neural Networks (Computational Intelligence and Bioinspired Systems), Lecture Notes in Computer Science, Vol. 3512, LNCS 3512, pages: 960-967, (Editors: J Cabestany and A Prieto and F Sandoval), Springer, Berlin Heidelberg, Germany, IWANN, 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
In this paper we report the results obtained using a kernel-based approach to predict the temporal development of four response signals in the process control of a glass melting tank with 16 input parameters. The data set is a revised version1 from the modelling challenge in EUNITE-2003. The central difficulties are: large time-delays between changes in the inputs and the outputs, large number of data, and a general lack of knowledge about the relevant variables that intervene in the process. The methodology proposed here comprises Support Vector Machines (SVM) and Regularization Networks (RN). We use the idea of sparse approximation both as a means of regularization and as a means of reducing the computational complexity. Furthermore, we will use an incremental approach to add new training examples to the kernel-based method and efficiently update the current solution. This allows us to use a sophisticated learning scheme, where we iterate between prediction and training, with good computational efficiency and satisfactory results.

DOI [BibTex]

DOI [BibTex]


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Object correspondence as a machine learning problem

Schölkopf, B., Steinke, F., Blanz, V.

In Proceedings of the 22nd International Conference on Machine Learning, pages: 777-784, (Editors: L De Raedt and S Wrobel), ACM, New York, NY, USA, ICML, 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We propose machine learning methods for the estimation of deformation fields that transform two given objects into each other, thereby establishing a dense point to point correspondence. The fields are computed using a modified support vector machine containing a penalty enforcing that points of one object will be mapped to ``similar‘‘ points on the other one. Our system, which contains little engineering or domain knowledge, delivers state of the art performance. We present application results including close to photorealistic morphs of 3D head models.

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Towards a Statistical Theory of Clustering. Presented at the PASCAL workshop on clustering, London

von Luxburg, U., Ben-David, S.

Presented at the PASCAL workshop on clustering, London, 2005 (techreport)

Abstract
The goal of this paper is to discuss statistical aspects of clustering in a framework where the data to be clustered has been sampled from some unknown probability distribution. Firstly, the clustering of the data set should reveal some structure of the underlying data rather than model artifacts due to the random sampling process. Secondly, the more sample points we have, the more reliable the clustering should be. We discuss which methods can and cannot be used to tackle those problems. In particular we argue that generalization bounds as they are used in statistical learning theory of classification are unsuitable in a general clustering framework. We suggest that the main replacements of generalization bounds should be convergence proofs and stability considerations. This paper should be considered as a road map paper which identifies important questions and potentially fruitful directions for future research about statistical clustering. We do not attempt to present a complete statistical theory of clustering.

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Implicit Surface Modelling as an Eigenvalue Problem

Walder, C., Chapelle, O., Schölkopf, B.

In Proceedings of the 22nd International Conference on Machine Learning, pages: 937-944, (Editors: L De Raedt and S Wrobel), ACM, New York, NY, USA, ICML, 2005 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We discuss the problem of fitting an implicit shape model to a set of points sampled from a co-dimension one manifold of arbitrary topology. The method solves a non-convex optimisation problem in the embedding function that defines the implicit by way of its zero level set. By assuming that the solution is a mixture of radial basis functions of varying widths we attain the globally optimal solution by way of an equivalent eigenvalue problem, without using or constructing as an intermediate step the normal vectors of the manifold at each data point. We demonstrate the system on two and three dimensional data, with examples of missing data interpolation and set operations on the resultant shapes.

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Approximate Bayesian Inference for Psychometric Functions using MCMC Sampling

Kuss, M., Jäkel, F., Wichmann, F.

(135), Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Tübingen, Germany, 2005 (techreport)

Abstract
In psychophysical studies the psychometric function is used to model the relation between the physical stimulus intensity and the observer's ability to detect or discriminate between stimuli of different intensities. In this report we propose the use of Bayesian inference to extract the information contained in experimental data estimate the parameters of psychometric functions. Since Bayesian inference cannot be performed analytically we describe how a Markov chain Monte Carlo method can be used to generate samples from the posterior distribution over parameters. These samples are used to estimate Bayesian confidence intervals and other characteristics of the posterior distribution. In addition we discuss the parameterisation of psychometric functions and the role of prior distributions in the analysis. The proposed approach is exemplified using artificially generate d data and in a case study for real experimental data. Furthermore, we compare our approach with traditional methods based on maximum-likelihood parameter estimation combined with bootstrap techniques for confidence interval estimation. The appendix provides a description of an implementation for the R environment for statistical computing and provides the code for reproducing the results discussed in the experiment section.

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Natural Actor-Critic

Peters, J., Vijayakumar, S., Schaal, S.

In Proceedings of the 16th European Conference on Machine Learning, 3720, pages: 280-291, (Editors: Gama, J.;Camacho, R.;Brazdil, P.;Jorge, A.;Torgo, L.), Springer, ECML, 2005, clmc (inproceedings)

Abstract
This paper investigates a novel model-free reinforcement learning architecture, the Natural Actor-Critic. The actor updates are based on stochastic policy gradients employing AmariÕs natural gradient approach, while the critic obtains both the natural policy gradient and additional parameters of a value function simultaneously by linear regres- sion. We show that actor improvements with natural policy gradients are particularly appealing as these are independent of coordinate frame of the chosen policy representation, and can be estimated more efficiently than regular policy gradients. The critic makes use of a special basis function parameterization motivated by the policy-gradient compatible function approximation. We show that several well-known reinforcement learning methods such as the original Actor-Critic and BradtkeÕs Linear Quadratic Q-Learning are in fact Natural Actor-Critic algorithms. Em- pirical evaluations illustrate the effectiveness of our techniques in com- parison to previous methods, and also demonstrate their applicability for learning control on an anthropomorphic robot arm.

link (url) DOI [BibTex]

link (url) DOI [BibTex]


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Comparative experiments on task space control with redundancy resolution

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

In Proceedings of the 2005 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems, pages: 3901-3908, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, Aug. 2-6, IROS, 2005, clmc (inproceedings)

Abstract
Understanding the principles of motor coordination with redundant degrees of freedom still remains a challenging problem, particularly for new research in highly redundant robots like humanoids. Even after more than a decade of research, task space control with redundacy resolution still remains an incompletely understood theoretical topic, and also lacks a larger body of thorough experimental investigation on complex robotic systems. This paper presents our first steps towards the development of a working redundancy resolution algorithm which is robust against modeling errors and unforeseen disturbances arising from contact forces. To gain a better understanding of the pros and cons of different approaches to redundancy resolution, we focus on a comparative empirical evaluation. First, we review several redundancy resolution schemes at the velocity, acceleration and torque levels presented in the literature in a common notational framework and also introduce some new variants of these previous approaches. Second, we present experimental comparisons of these approaches on a seven-degree-of-freedom anthropomorphic robot arm. Surprisingly, one of our simplest algorithms empirically demonstrates the best performance, despite, from a theoretical point, the algorithm does not share the same beauty as some of the other methods. Finally, we discuss practical properties of these control algorithms, particularly in light of inevitable modeling errors of the robot dynamics.

link (url) DOI [BibTex]

link (url) DOI [BibTex]

2003


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Learning Control and Planning from the View of Control Theory and Imitation

Peters, J., Schaal, S.

NIPS Workshop "Planning for the Real World: The promises and challenges of dealing with uncertainty", December 2003 (talk)

Abstract
Learning control and planning in high dimensional continuous state-action systems, e.g., as needed in a humanoid robot, has so far been a domain beyond the applicability of generic planning techniques like reinforcement learning and dynamic programming. This talk describes an approach we have taken in order to enable complex robotics systems to learn to accomplish control tasks. Adaptive learning controllers equipped with statistical learning techniques can be used to learn tracking controllers -- missing state information and uncertainty in the state estimates are usually addressed by observers or direct adaptive control methods. Imitation learning is used as an ingredient to seed initial control policies whose output is a desired trajectory suitable to accomplish the task at hand. Reinforcement learning with stochastic policy gradients using a natural gradient forms the third component that allows refining the initial control policy until the task is accomplished. In comparison to general learning control, this approach is highly prestructured and thus more domain specific. However, it seems to be a theoretically clean and feasible strategy for control systems of the complexity that we need to address.

Web [BibTex]

2003

Web [BibTex]


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Recurrent neural networks from learning attractor dynamics

Schaal, S., Peters, J.

NIPS Workshop on RNNaissance: Recurrent Neural Networks, December 2003 (talk)

Abstract
Many forms of recurrent neural networks can be understood in terms of dynamic systems theory of difference equations or differential equations. Learning in such systems corresponds to adjusting some internal parameters to obtain a desired time evolution of the network, which can usually be characterized in term of point attractor dynamics, limit cycle dynamics, or, in some more rare cases, as strange attractor or chaotic dynamics. Finding a stable learning process to adjust the open parameters of the network towards shaping the desired attractor type and basin of attraction has remain a complex task, as the parameter trajectories during learning can lead the system through a variety of undesirable unstable behaviors, such that learning may never succeed. In this presentation, we review a recently developed learning framework for a class of recurrent neural networks that employs a more structured network approach. We assume that the canonical system behavior is known a priori, e.g., it is a point attractor or a limit cycle. With either supervised learning or reinforcement learning, it is possible to acquire the transformation from a simple representative of this canonical behavior (e.g., a 2nd order linear point attractor, or a simple limit cycle oscillator) to the desired highly complex attractor form. For supervised learning, one shot learning based on locally weighted regression techniques is possible. For reinforcement learning, stochastic policy gradient techniques can be employed. In any case, the recurrent network learned by these methods inherits the stability properties of the simple dynamic system that underlies the nonlinear transformation, such that stability of the learning approach is not a problem. We demonstrate the success of this approach for learning various skills on a humanoid robot, including tasks that require to incorporate additional sensory signals as coupling terms to modify the recurrent network evolution on-line.

Web [BibTex]

Web [BibTex]


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Support Vector Channel Selection in BCI

Lal, T., Schröder, M., Hinterberger, T., Weston, J., Bogdan, M., Birbaumer, N., Schölkopf, B.

(120), Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Tuebingen, Germany, December 2003 (techreport)

Abstract
Designing a Brain Computer Interface (BCI) system one can choose from a variety of features that may be useful for classifying brain activity during a mental task. For the special case of classifying EEG signals we propose the usage of the state of the art feature selection algorithms Recursive Feature Elimination [3] and Zero-Norm Optimization [13] which are based on the training of Support Vector Machines (SVM) [11]. These algorithms can provide more accurate solutions than standard filter methods for feature selection [14]. We adapt the methods for the purpose of selecting EEG channels. For a motor imagery paradigm we show that the number of used channels can be reduced significantly without increasing the classification error. The resulting best channels agree well with the expected underlying cortical activity patterns during the mental tasks. Furthermore we show how time dependent task specific information can be visualized.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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How to Deal with Large Dataset, Class Imbalance and Binary Output in SVM based Response Model

Shin, H., Cho, S.

In Proc. of the Korean Data Mining Conference, pages: 93-107, Korean Data Mining Conference, December 2003, Best Paper Award (inproceedings)

Abstract
[Abstract]: Various machine learning methods have made a rapid transition to response modeling in search of improved performance. And support vector machine (SVM) has also been attracting much attention lately. This paper presents an SVM response model. We are specifically focusing on the how-to’s to circumvent practical obstacles, such as how to face with class imbalance problem, how to produce the scores from an SVM classifier for lift chart analysis, and how to evaluate the models on accuracy and profit. Besides coping with the intractability problem of SVM training caused by large marketing dataset, a previously proposed pattern selection algorithm is introduced. SVM training accompanies time complexity of the cube of training set size. The pattern selection algorithm picks up important training patterns before SVM response modeling. We made comparison on SVM training results between the pattern selection algorithm and random sampling. Three aspects of SVM response models were evaluated: accuracies, lift chart analysis, and computational efficiency. The SVM trained with selected patterns showed a high accuracy, a high uplift in profit and in response rate, and a high computational efficiency.

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Bayesian Monte Carlo

Rasmussen, CE., Ghahramani, Z.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 15, pages: 489-496, (Editors: Becker, S. , S. Thrun, K. Obermayer), MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, USA, Sixteenth Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), October 2003 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We investigate Bayesian alternatives to classical Monte Carlo methods for evaluating integrals. Bayesian Monte Carlo (BMC) allows the incorporation of prior knowledge, such as smoothness of the integrand, into the estimation. In a simple problem we show that this outperforms any classical importance sampling method. We also attempt more challenging multidimensional integrals involved in computing marginal likelihoods of statistical models (a.k.a. partition functions and model evidences). We find that Bayesian Monte Carlo outperformed Annealed Importance Sampling, although for very high dimensional problems or problems with massive multimodality BMC may be less adequate. One advantage of the Bayesian approach to Monte Carlo is that samples can be drawn from any distribution. This allows for the possibility of active design of sample points so as to maximise information gain.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Technical report on Separation methods for nonlinear mixtures

Jutten, C., Karhunen, J., Almeida, L., Harmeling, S.

(D29), EU-Project BLISS, October 2003 (techreport)

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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On the Complexity of Learning the Kernel Matrix

Bousquet, O., Herrmann, D.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 15, pages: 399-406, (Editors: Becker, S. , S. Thrun, K. Obermayer), The MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, USA, Sixteenth Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), October 2003 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We investigate data based procedures for selecting the kernel when learning with Support Vector Machines. We provide generalization error bounds by estimating the Rademacher complexities of the corresponding function classes. In particular we obtain a complexity bound for function classes induced by kernels with given eigenvectors, i.e., we allow to vary the spectrum and keep the eigenvectors fix. This bound is only a logarithmic factor bigger than the complexity of the function class induced by a single kernel. However, optimizing the margin over such classes leads to overfitting. We thus propose a suitable way of constraining the class. We use an efficient algorithm to solve the resulting optimization problem, present preliminary experimental results, and compare them to an alignment-based approach.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Image Reconstruction by Linear Programming

Tsuda, K., Rätsch, G.

(118), Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Tübingen, Germany, October 2003 (techreport)

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Control, Planning, Learning, and Imitation with Dynamic Movement Primitives

Schaal, S., Peters, J., Nakanishi, J., Ijspeert, A.

In IROS 2003, pages: 1-21, Workshop on Bilateral Paradigms on Humans and Humanoids, IEEE International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems, October 2003 (inproceedings)

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Discriminative Learning for Label Sequences via Boosting

Altun, Y., Hofmann, T., Johnson, M.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 15, pages: 977-984, (Editors: Becker, S. , S. Thrun, K. Obermayer ), MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, USA, Sixteenth Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), October 2003 (inproceedings)

Abstract
This paper investigates a boosting approach to discriminative learning of label sequences based on a sequence rank loss function.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Multiple-step ahead prediction for non linear dynamic systems: A Gaussian Process treatment with propagation of the uncertainty

Girard, A., Rasmussen, CE., Quiñonero-Candela, J., Murray-Smith, R.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 15, pages: 529-536, (Editors: Becker, S. , S. Thrun, K. Obermayer), MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, USA, Sixteenth Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), October 2003 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We consider the problem of multi-step ahead prediction in time series analysis using the non-parametric Gaussian process model. k-step ahead forecasting of a discrete-time non-linear dynamic system can be performed by doing repeated one-step ahead predictions. For a state-space model of the form y_t = f(y_{t-1},...,y_{t-L}), the prediction of y at time t + k is based on the point estimates of the previous outputs. In this paper, we show how, using an analytical Gaussian approximation, we can formally incorporate the uncertainty about intermediate regressor values, thus updating the uncertainty on the current prediction.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Cluster Kernels for Semi-Supervised Learning

Chapelle, O., Weston, J., Schölkopf, B.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 15, pages: 585-592, (Editors: S Becker and S Thrun and K Obermayer), MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, USA, 16th Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), October 2003 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We propose a framework to incorporate unlabeled data in kernel classifier, based on the idea that two points in the same cluster are more likely to have the same label. This is achieved by modifying the eigenspectrum of the kernel matrix. Experimental results assess the validity of this approach.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Mismatch String Kernels for SVM Protein Classification

Leslie, C., Eskin, E., Weston, J., Noble, W.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 15, pages: 1417-1424, (Editors: Becker, S. , S. Thrun, K. Obermayer), MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, USA, Sixteenth Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), October 2003 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We introduce a class of string kernels, called mismatch kernels, for use with support vector machines (SVMs) in a discriminative approach to the protein classification problem. These kernels measure sequence similarity based on shared occurrences of k-length subsequences, counted with up to m mismatches, and do not rely on any generative model for the positive training sequences. We compute the kernels efficiently using a mismatch tree data structure and report experiments on a benchmark SCOP dataset, where we show that the mismatch kernel used with an SVM classifier performs as well as the Fisher kernel, the most successful method for remote homology detection, while achieving considerable computational savings.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Incremental Gaussian Processes

Quinonero Candela, J., Winther, O.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 15, pages: 1001-1008, (Editors: Becker, S. , S. Thrun, K. Obermayer), MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, USA, Sixteenth Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), October 2003 (inproceedings)

Abstract
In this paper, we consider Tipping‘s relevance vector machine (RVM) and formalize an incremental training strategy as a variant of the expectation-maximization (EM) algorithm that we call subspace EM. Working with a subset of active basis functions, the sparsity of the RVM solution will ensure that the number of basis functions and thereby the computational complexity is kept low. We also introduce a mean field approach to the intractable classification model that is expected to give a very good approximation to exact Bayesian inference and contains the Laplace approximation as a special case. We test the algorithms on two large data sets with O(10^3-10^4) examples. The results indicate that Bayesian learning of large data sets, e.g. the MNIST database is realistic.

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Kernel Dependency Estimation

Weston, J., Chapelle, O., Elisseeff, A., Schölkopf, B., Vapnik, V.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 15, pages: 873-880, (Editors: S Becker and S Thrun and K Obermayer), MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, USA, 16th Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), October 2003 (inproceedings)

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]