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2008


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Multi-class Common Spatial Pattern and Information Theoretic Feature Extraction

Grosse-Wentrup, M., Buss, M.

IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering, 55(8):1991-2000, August 2008 (article)

Abstract
We address two shortcomings of the common spatial patterns (CSP) algorithm for spatial filtering in the context of brain--computer interfaces (BCIs) based on electroencephalography/magnetoencephalography (EEG/MEG): First, the question of optimality of CSP in terms of the minimal achievable classification error remains unsolved. Second, CSP has been initially proposed for two-class paradigms. Extensions to multiclass paradigms have been suggested, but are based on heuristics. We address these shortcomings in the framework of information theoretic feature extraction (ITFE). We show that for two-class paradigms, CSP maximizes an approximation of mutual information of extracted EEG/MEG components and class labels. This establishes a link between CSP and the minimal classification error. For multiclass paradigms, we point out that CSP by joint approximate diagonalization (JAD) is equivalent to independent component analysis (ICA), and provide a method to choose those independent components (ICs) that approximately maximize mutual information of ICs and class labels. This eliminates the need for heuristics in multiclass CSP, and allows incorporating prior class probabilities. The proposed method is applied to the dataset IIIa of the third BCI competition, and is shown to increase the mean classification accuracy by 23.4% in comparison to multiclass CSP.

ei

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]

2008


PDF Web DOI [BibTex]


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At-TAX: A Whole Genome Tiling Array Resource for Developmental Expression Analysis and Transcript Identification in Arabidopsis thaliana

Laubinger, S., Zeller, G., Henz, S., Sachsenberg, T., Widmer, C., Naouar, N., Vuylsteke, M., Schölkopf, B., Rätsch, G., Weigel, D.

Genome Biology, 9(7: R112):1-16, July 2008 (article)

Abstract
Gene expression maps for model organisms, including Arabidopsis thaliana, have typically been created using gene-centric expression arrays. Here, we describe a comprehensive expression atlas, Arabidopsis thaliana Tiling Array Express (At-TAX), which is based on whole-genome tiling arrays. We demonstrate that tiling arrays are accurate tools for gene expression analysis and identified more than 1,000 unannotated transcribed regions. Visualizations of gene expression estimates, transcribed regions, and tiling probe measurements are accessible online at the At-TAX homepage.

ei

PDF DOI [BibTex]

PDF DOI [BibTex]


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Graphical Analysis of NMR Structural Quality and Interactive Contact Map of NOE Assignments in ARIA

Bardiaux, B., Bernard, A., Rieping, W., Habeck, M., Malliavin, T., Nilges, M.

BMC Structural Biology, 8(30):1-5, June 2008 (article)

Abstract
BACKGROUND: The Ambiguous Restraints for Iterative Assignment (ARIA) approach is widely used for NMR structure determination. It is based on simultaneously calculating structures and assigning NOE through an iterative protocol. The final solution consists of a set of conformers and a list of most probable assignments for the input NOE peak list. RESULTS: ARIA was extended with a series of graphical tools to facilitate a detailed analysis of the intermediate and final results of the ARIA protocol. These additional features provide (i) an interactive contact map, serving as a tool for the analysis of assignments, and (ii) graphical representations of structure quality scores and restraint statistics. The interactive contact map between residues can be clicked to obtain information about the restraints and their contributions. Profiles of quality scores are plotted along the protein sequence, and contact maps provide information of the agreement with the data on a residue pair level. CONCLUSIONS: The g raphical tools and outputs described here significantly extend the validation and analysis possibilities of NOE assignments given by ARIA as well as the analysis of the quality of the final structure ensemble. These tools are included in the latest version of ARIA, which is available at http://aria.pasteur.fr. The Web site also contains an installation guide, a user manual and example calculations.

ei

PDF DOI [BibTex]

PDF DOI [BibTex]


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Kernel Methods in Machine Learning

Hofmann, T., Schölkopf, B., Smola, A.

Annals of Statistics, 36(3):1171-1220, June 2008 (article)

Abstract
We review machine learning methods employing positive definite kernels. These methods formulate learning and estimation problems in a reproducing kernel Hilbert space (RKHS) of functions defined on the data domain, expanded in terms of a kernel. Working in linear spaces of function has the benefit of facilitating the construction and analysis of learning algorithms while at the same time allowing large classes of functions. The latter include nonlinear functions as well as functions defined on nonvectorial data.

ei

PDF PDF DOI [BibTex]

PDF PDF DOI [BibTex]


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Cross-validation Optimization for Large Scale Structured Classification Kernel Methods

Seeger, M.

Journal of Machine Learning Research, 9, pages: 1147-1178, June 2008 (article)

Abstract
We propose a highly efficient framework for penalized likelihood kernel methods applied to multi-class models with a large, structured set of classes. As opposed to many previous approaches which try to decompose the fitting problem into many smaller ones, we focus on a Newton optimization of the complete model, making use of model structure and linear conjugate gradients in order to approximate Newton search directions. Crucially, our learning method is based entirely on matrix-vector multiplication primitives with the kernel matrices and their derivatives, allowing straightforward specialization to new kernels, and focusing code optimization efforts to these primitives only. Kernel parameters are learned automatically, by maximizing the cross-validation log likelihood in a gradient-based way, and predictive probabilities are estimated. We demonstrate our approach on large scale text classification tasks with hierarchical structure on thousands of classes, achieving state-of-the-art results in an order of magnitude less time than previous work.

ei

PDF PDF [BibTex]

PDF PDF [BibTex]


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Reinforcement Learning of Motor Skills with Policy Gradients

Peters, J., Schaal, S.

Neural Networks, 21(4):682-697, May 2008 (article)

ei

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]


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Information Consistency of Nonparametric Gaussian Process Methods

Seeger, MW., Kakade, SM., Foster, DP.

IEEE Transactions on Information Theory, 54(5):2376-2382, May 2008 (article)

Abstract
Abstract—Bayesian nonparametric models are widely and successfully used for statistical prediction. While posterior consistency properties are well studied in quite general settings, results have been proved using abstract concepts such as metric entropy, and they come with subtle conditions which are hard to validate and not intuitive when applied to concrete models. Furthermore, convergence rates are difficult to obtain. By focussing on the concept of information consistency for Bayesian Gaussian process (GP)models, consistency results and convergence rates are obtained via a regret bound on cumulative log loss. These results depend strongly on the covariance function of the prior process, thereby giving a novel interpretation to penalization with reproducing kernel Hilbert space norms and to commonly used covariance function classes and their parameters. The proof of the main result employs elementary convexity arguments only. A theorem of Widom is used in order to obtain precise convergence rates for several covariance functions widely used in practice.

ei

Web DOI [BibTex]

Web DOI [BibTex]


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Relating the Thermodynamic Arrow of Time to the Causal Arrow

Allahverdyan, A., Janzing, D.

Journal of Statistical Mechanics, 2008(P04001):1-21, April 2008 (article)

Abstract
Consider a Hamiltonian system that consists of a slow subsystem S and a fast subsystem F. The autonomous dynamics of S is driven by an effective Hamiltonian, but its thermodynamics is unexpected. We show that a well-defined thermodynamic arrow of time (second law) emerges for S whenever there is a well-defined causal arrow from S to F and the back-action is negligible. This is because the back-action of F on S is described by a non-globally Hamiltonian Born–Oppenheimer term that violates the Liouville theorem, and makes the second law inapplicable to S. If S and F are mixing, under the causal arrow condition they are described by microcanonical distributions P(S) and P(S|F). Their structure supports a causal inference principle proposed recently in machine learning.

ei

Web DOI [BibTex]

Web DOI [BibTex]


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Generalization and Similarity in Exemplar Models of Categorization: Insights from Machine Learning

Jäkel, F., Schölkopf, B., Wichmann, F.

Psychonomic Bulletin and Review, 15(2):256-271, April 2008 (article)

Abstract
Exemplar theories of categorization depend on similarity for explaining subjects’ ability to generalize to new stimuli. A major criticism of exemplar theories concerns their lack of abstraction mechanisms and thus, seemingly, generalization ability. Here, we use insights from machine learning to demonstrate that exemplar models can actually generalize very well. Kernel methods in machine learning are akin to exemplar models and very successful in real-world applications. Their generalization performance depends crucially on the chosen similaritymeasure. While similarity plays an important role in describing generalization behavior it is not the only factor that controls generalization performance. In machine learning, kernel methods are often combined with regularization techniques to ensure good generalization. These same techniques are easily incorporated in exemplar models. We show that the Generalized Context Model (Nosofsky, 1986) and ALCOVE (Kruschke, 1992) are closely related to a statistical model called kernel logistic regression. We argue that generalization is central to the enterprise of understanding categorization behavior and suggest how insights from machine learning can offer some guidance. Keywords: kernel, similarity, regularization, generalization, categorization.

ei

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]


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Manifold-valued Thin-plate Splines with Applications in Computer Graphics

Steinke, F., Hein, M., Peters, J., Schölkopf, B.

Computer Graphics Forum, 27(2):437-448, April 2008 (article)

Abstract
We present a generalization of thin-plate splines for interpolation and approximation of manifold-valued data, and demonstrate its usefulness in computer graphics with several applications from different fields. The cornerstone of our theoretical framework is an energy functional for mappings between two Riemannian manifolds which is independent of parametrization and respects the geometry of both manifolds. If the manifolds are Euclidean, the energy functional reduces to the classical thin-plate spline energy. We show how the resulting optimization problems can be solved efficiently in many cases. Our example applications range from orientation interpolation and motion planning in animation over geometric modelling tasks to color interpolation.

ei

PDF AVI Web DOI [BibTex]


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The Metric Nearness Problem

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

SIAM Journal on Matrix Analysis and Applications, 30(1):375-396, April 2008 (article)

Abstract
Metric nearness refers to the problem of optimally restoring metric properties to distance measurements that happen to be nonmetric due to measurement errors or otherwise. Metric data can be important in various settings, for example, in clustering, classification, metric-based indexing, query processing, and graph theoretic approximation algorithms. This paper formulates and solves the metric nearness problem: Given a set of pairwise dissimilarities, find a “nearest” set of distances that satisfy the properties of a metric—principally the triangle inequality. For solving this problem, the paper develops efficient triangle fixing algorithms that are based on an iterative projection method. An intriguing aspect of the metric nearness problem is that a special case turns out to be equivalent to the all pairs shortest paths problem. The paper exploits this equivalence and develops a new algorithm for the latter problem using a primal-dual method. Applications to graph clustering are provided as an illustratio n. We include experiments that demonstrate the computational superiority of triangle fixing over general purpose convex programming software. Finally, we conclude by suggesting various useful extensions and generalizations to metric nearness.

ei

Web DOI [BibTex]

Web DOI [BibTex]


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Bayesian Inference and Optimal Design for the Sparse Linear Model

Seeger, MW.

Journal of Machine Learning Research, 9, pages: 759-813, April 2008 (article)

Abstract
The linear model with sparsity-favouring prior on the coefficients has important applications in many different domains. In machine learning, most methods to date search for maximum a posteriori sparse solutions and neglect to represent posterior uncertainties. In this paper, we address problems of Bayesian optimal design (or experiment planning), for which accurate estimates of uncertainty are essential. To this end, we employ expectation propagation approximate inference for the linear model with Laplace prior, giving new insight into numerical stability properties and proposing a robust algorithm. We also show how to estimate model hyperparameters by empirical Bayesian maximisation of the marginal likelihood, and propose ideas in order to scale up the method to very large underdetermined problems. We demonstrate the versatility of our framework on the application of gene regulatory network identification from micro-array expression data, where both the Laplace prior and the active experimental design approach are shown to result in significant improvements. We also address the problem of sparse coding of natural images, and show how our framework can be used for compressive sensing tasks.

ei

PDF PDF [BibTex]

PDF PDF [BibTex]


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Consistency of Spectral Clustering

von Luxburg, U., Belkin, M., Bousquet, O.

Annals of Statistics, 36(2):555-586, April 2008 (article)

Abstract
Consistency is a key property of statistical algorithms when the data is drawn from some underlying probability distribution. Surprisingly, despite decades of work, little is known about consistency of most clustering algorithms. In this paper we investigate consistency of the popular family of spectral clustering algorithms, which clusters the data with the help of eigenvectors of graph Laplacian matrices. We develop new methods to establish that for increasing sample size, those eigenvectors converge to the eigenvectors of certain limit operators. As a result we can prove that one of the two major classes of spectral clustering (normalized clustering) converges under very general conditions, while the other (unnormalized clustering) is only consistent under strong additional assumptions, which are not always satisfied in real data. We conclude that our analysis provides strong evidence for the superiority of normalized spectral clustering.

ei

PDF DOI [BibTex]

PDF DOI [BibTex]


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Plant Classification from Bat-Like Echolocation Signals

Yovel, Y., Franz, MO., Stilz, P., Schnitzler, H-U.

PLoS Computational Biology, 4(3, e1000032):1-13, March 2008 (article)

Abstract
Classification of plants according to their echoes is an elementary component of bat behavior that plays an important role in spatial orientation and food acquisition. Vegetation echoes are, however, highly complex stochastic signals: from an acoustical point of view, a plant can be thought of as a three-dimensional array of leaves reflecting the emitted bat call. The received echo is therefore a superposition of many reflections. In this work we suggest that the classification of these echoes might not be such a troublesome routine for bats as formerly thought. We present a rather simple approach to classifying signals from a large database of plant echoes that were created by ensonifying plants with a frequency-modulated bat-like ultrasonic pulse. Our algorithm uses the spectrogram of a single echo from which it only uses features that are undoubtedly accessible to bats. We used a standard machine learning algorithm (SVM) to automatically extract suitable linear combinations of time and frequency cues from the spectrograms such that classification with high accuracy is enabled. This demonstrates that ultrasonic echoes are highly informative about the species membership of an ensonified plant, and that this information can be extracted with rather simple, biologically plausible analysis. Thus, our findings provide a new explanatory basis for the poorly understood observed abilities of bats in classifying vegetation and other complex objects.

ei

Web DOI [BibTex]

Web DOI [BibTex]


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Causal Reasoning by Evaluating the Complexity of Conditional Densities with Kernel Methods

Sun, X., Janzing, D., Schölkopf, B.

Neurocomputing, 71(7-9):1248-1256, March 2008 (article)

Abstract
We propose a method to quantify the complexity of conditional probability measures by a Hilbert space seminorm of the logarithm of its density. The concept of reproducing kernel Hilbert spaces (RKHSs) is a flexible tool to define such a seminorm by choosing an appropriate kernel. We present several examples with artificial data sets where our kernel-based complexity measure is consistent with our intuitive understanding of complexity of densities. The intention behind the complexity measure is to provide a new approach to inferring causal directions. The idea is that the factorization of the joint probability measure P(effect, cause) into P(effect|cause)P(cause) leads typically to "simpler" and "smoother" terms than the factorization into P(cause|effect)P(effect). Since the conventional constraint-based approach of causal discovery is not able to determine the causal direction between only two variables, our inference principle can in particular be useful when combined with other existing methods. We provide several simple examples with real-world data where the true causal directions indeed lead to simpler (conditional) densities.

ei

Web DOI [BibTex]


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Natural Actor-Critic

Peters, J., Schaal, S.

Neurocomputing, 71(7-9):1180-1190, March 2008 (article)

Abstract
In this paper, we suggest a novel reinforcement learning architecture, the Natural Actor-Critic. The actor updates are achieved using stochastic policy gradients em- ploying Amari’s natural gradient approach, while the critic obtains both the natural policy gradient and additional parameters of a value function simultaneously by lin- ear regression. 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 gra- dients. 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 Bradtke’s Linear Quadratic Q-Learning are in fact Natural Actor-Critic algorithms. Empirical evaluations illustrate the effectiveness of our techniques in comparison to previous methods, and also demonstrate their applicability for learning control on an anthropomorphic robot arm.

ei

PDF PDF DOI [BibTex]

PDF PDF DOI [BibTex]


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Inferring Spike Trains From Local Field Potentials

Rasch, M., Gretton, A., Murayama, Y., Maass, W., Logothetis, N.

Journal of Neurophysiology, 99(3):1461-1476, March 2008 (article)

Abstract
We investigated whether it is possible to infer spike trains solely on the basis of the underlying local field potentials (LFPs). Using support vector machines and linear regression models, we found that in the primary visual cortex (V1) of monkeys, spikes can indeed be inferred from LFPs, at least with moderate success. Although there is a considerable degree of variation across electrodes, the low-frequency structure in spike trains (in the 100-ms range) can be inferred with reasonable accuracy, whereas exact spike positions are not reliably predicted. Two kinds of features of the LFP are exploited for prediction: the frequency power of bands in the high gamma-range (40–90 Hz) and information contained in lowfrequency oscillations ( 10 Hz), where both phase and power modulations are informative. Information analysis revealed that both features code (mainly) independent aspects of the spike-to-LFP relationship, with the low-frequency LFP phase coding for temporally clustered spiking activity. Although both features and prediction quality are similar during seminatural movie stimuli and spontaneous activity, prediction performance during spontaneous activity degrades much more slowly with increasing electrode distance. The general trend of data obtained with anesthetized animals is qualitatively mirrored in that of a more limited data set recorded in V1 of non-anesthetized monkeys. In contrast to the cortical field potentials, thalamic LFPs (e.g., LFPs derived from recordings in the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus) hold no useful information for predicting spiking activity.

ei

Web DOI [BibTex]

Web DOI [BibTex]


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ISD: A Software Package for Bayesian NMR Structure Calculation

Rieping, W., Nilges, M., Habeck, M.

Bioinformatics, 24(8):1104-1105, February 2008 (article)

Abstract
SUMMARY: The conventional approach to calculating biomolecular structures from nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) data is often viewed as subjective due to its dependence on rules of thumb for deriving geometric constraints and suitable values for theory parameters from noisy experimental data. As a result, it can be difficult to judge the precision of an NMR structure in an objective manner. The Inferential Structure Determination (ISD) framework, which has been introduced recently, addresses this problem by using Bayesian inference to derive a probability distribution that represents both the unknown structure and its uncertainty. It also determines additional unknowns, such as theory parameters, that normally need be chosen empirically. Here we give an overview of the ISD software package, which implements this methodology. AVAILABILITY: The program is available at http://www.bioc.cam.ac.uk/isd

ei

Web DOI [BibTex]

Web DOI [BibTex]


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Probabilistic Structure Calculation

Nilges, M., Habeck, M., Rieping, W.

Comptes Rendus Chimie, 11(4-5):356-369, February 2008 (article)

Abstract
Molecular structures are usually calculated from experimental data with some method of energy minimisation or non-linear optimisation. Key aims of a structure calculation are to estimate the coordinate uncertainty, and to provide a meaningful measure of the quality of the fit to the data. We discuss approaches to optimally combine prior information and experimental data and the connection to probability theory. We analyse the appropriate statistics for NOEs and NOE-derived distances, and the related question of restraint potentials. Finally, we will discuss approaches to determine the appropriate weight on the experimental evidence and to obtain in this way an estimate of the data quality from the structure calculation. Whereas objective estimates of coordinates and their uncertainties can only be obtained by a full Bayesian treatment of the problem, standard structure calculation methods continue to play an important role. To obtain the full benefit of these methods, they should be founded on a rigorous Baye sian analysis.

ei

Web DOI [BibTex]

Web DOI [BibTex]


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Fast Projection-based Methods for the Least Squares Nonnegative Matrix Approximation Problem

Kim, D., Sra, S., Dhillon, I.

Statistical Analysis and Data Mining, 1(1):38-51, February 2008 (article)

Abstract
Nonnegative matrix approximation (NNMA) is a popular matrix decomposition technique that has proven to be useful across a diverse variety of fields with applications ranging from document analysis and image processing to bioinformatics and signal processing. Over the years, several algorithms for NNMA have been proposed, e.g. Lee and Seung‘s multiplicative updates, alternating least squares (ALS), and gradient descent-based procedures. However, most of these procedures suffer from either slow convergence, numerical instability, or at worst, serious theoretical drawbacks. In this paper, we develop a new and improved algorithmic framework for the least-squares NNMA problem, which is not only theoretically well-founded, but also overcomes many deficiencies of other methods. Our framework readily admits powerful optimization techniques and as concrete realizations we present implementations based on the Newton, BFGS and conjugate gradient methods. Our algorithms provide numerical resu lts supe rior to both Lee and Seung‘s method as well as to the alternating least squares heuristic, which was reported to work well in some situations but has no theoretical guarantees[1]. Our approach extends naturally to include regularization and box-constraints without sacrificing convergence guarantees. We present experimental results on both synthetic and real-world datasets that demonstrate the superiority of our methods, both in terms of better approximations as well as computational efficiency.

ei

Web DOI [BibTex]

Web DOI [BibTex]


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A Unifying Probabilistic Framework for Analyzing Residual Dipolar Couplings

Habeck, M., Nilges, M., Rieping, W.

Journal of Biomolecular NMR, 40(2):135-144, February 2008 (article)

Abstract
Residual dipolar couplings provide complementary information to the nuclear Overhauser effect measurements that are traditionally used in biomolecular structure determination by NMR. In a de novo structure determination, however, lack of knowledge about the degree and orientation of molecular alignment complicates the analysis of dipolar coupling data. We present a probabilistic framework for analyzing residual dipolar couplings and demonstrate that it is possible to estimate the atomic coordinates, the complete molecular alignment tensor, and the error of the couplings simultaneously. As a by-product, we also obtain estimates of the uncertainty in the coordinates and the alignment tensor. We show that our approach encompasses existing methods for determining the alignment tensor as special cases, including least squares estimation, histogram fitting, and elimination of an explicit alignment tensor in the restraint energy.

ei

PDF DOI [BibTex]

PDF DOI [BibTex]


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Contour-propagation Algorithms for Semi-automated Reconstruction of Neural Processes

Macke, J., Maack, N., Gupta, R., Denk, W., Schölkopf, B., Borst, A.

Journal of Neuroscience Methods, 167(2):349-357, January 2008 (article)

Abstract
A new technique, ”Serial Block Face Scanning Electron Microscopy” (SBFSEM), allows for automatic sectioning and imaging of biological tissue with a scanning electron microscope. Image stacks generated with this technology have a resolution sufficient to distinguish different cellular compartments, including synaptic structures, which should make it possible to obtain detailed anatomical knowledge of complete neuronal circuits. Such an image stack contains several thousands of images and is recorded with a minimal voxel size of 10-20nm in the x and y- and 30nm in z-direction. Consequently, a tissue block of 1mm3 (the approximate volume of the Calliphora vicina brain) will produce several hundred terabytes of data. Therefore, highly automated 3D reconstruction algorithms are needed. As a first step in this direction we have developed semiautomated segmentation algorithms for a precise contour tracing of cell membranes. These algorithms were embedded into an easy-to-operate user interface, which allows direct 3D observation of the extracted objects during the segmentation of image stacks. Compared to purely manual tracing, processing time is greatly accelerated.

ei

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]


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A Quantum-Statistical-Mechanical Extension of Gaussian Mixture Model

Tanaka, K., Tsuda, K.

Journal of Physics: Conference Series, 95(012023):1-9, January 2008 (article)

Abstract
We propose an extension of Gaussian mixture models in the statistical-mechanical point of view. The conventional Gaussian mixture models are formulated to divide all points in given data to some kinds of classes. We introduce some quantum states constructed by superposing conventional classes in linear combinations. Our extension can provide a new algorithm in classifications of data by means of linear response formulas in the statistical mechanics.

ei

PDF PDF DOI [BibTex]

PDF PDF DOI [BibTex]


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Learning to control in operational space

Peters, J., Schaal, S.

International Journal of Robotics Research, 27, pages: 197-212, 2008, clmc (article)

Abstract
One of the most general frameworks for phrasing control problems for complex, redundant robots is operational space control. However, while this framework is of essential importance for robotics and well-understood from an analytical point of view, it can be prohibitively hard to achieve accurate control in face of modeling errors, which are inevitable in com- plex robots, e.g., humanoid robots. In this paper, we suggest a learning approach for opertional space control as a direct inverse model learning problem. A first important insight for this paper is that a physically cor- rect solution to the inverse problem with redundant degrees-of-freedom does exist when learning of the inverse map is performed in a suitable piecewise linear way. The second crucial component for our work is based on the insight that many operational space controllers can be understood in terms of a constrained optimal control problem. The cost function as- sociated with this optimal control problem allows us to formulate a learn- ing algorithm that automatically synthesizes a globally consistent desired resolution of redundancy while learning the operational space controller. From the machine learning point of view, this learning problem corre- sponds to a reinforcement learning problem that maximizes an immediate reward. We employ an expectation-maximization policy search algorithm in order to solve this problem. Evaluations on a three degrees of freedom robot arm are used to illustrate the suggested approach. The applica- tion to a physically realistic simulator of the anthropomorphic SARCOS Master arm demonstrates feasibility for complex high degree-of-freedom robots. We also show that the proposed method works in the setting of learning resolved motion rate control on real, physical Mitsubishi PA-10 medical robotics arm.

am ei

link (url) DOI [BibTex]

link (url) DOI [BibTex]

2005


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Kernel Methods for Measuring Independence

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

Journal of Machine Learning Research, 6, pages: 2075-2129, December 2005 (article)

Abstract
We introduce two new functionals, the constrained covariance and the kernel mutual information, to measure the degree of independence of random variables. These quantities are both based on the covariance between functions of the random variables in reproducing kernel Hilbert spaces (RKHSs). We prove that when the RKHSs are universal, both functionals are zero if and only if the random variables are pairwise independent. We also show that the kernel mutual information is an upper bound near independence on the Parzen window estimate of the mutual information. Analogous results apply for two correlation-based dependence functionals introduced earlier: we show the kernel canonical correlation and the kernel generalised variance to be independence measures for universal kernels, and prove the latter to be an upper bound on the mutual information near independence. The performance of the kernel dependence functionals in measuring independence is verified in the context of independent component analysis.

ei

PDF PostScript PDF [BibTex]

2005


PDF PostScript PDF [BibTex]


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A Unifying View of Sparse Approximate Gaussian Process Regression

Quinonero Candela, J., Rasmussen, C.

Journal of Machine Learning Research, 6, pages: 1935-1959, December 2005 (article)

Abstract
We provide a new unifying view, including all existing proper probabilistic sparse approximations for Gaussian process regression. Our approach relies on expressing the effective prior which the methods are using. This allows new insights to be gained, and highlights the relationship between existing methods. It also allows for a clear theoretically justified ranking of the closeness of the known approximations to the corresponding full GPs. Finally we point directly to designs of new better sparse approximations, combining the best of the existing strategies, within attractive computational constraints.

ei

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Maximal Margin Classification for Metric Spaces

Hein, M., Bousquet, O., Schölkopf, B.

Journal of Computer and System Sciences, 71(3):333-359, October 2005 (article)

Abstract
In order to apply the maximum margin method in arbitrary metric spaces, we suggest to embed the metric space into a Banach or Hilbert space and to perform linear classification in this space. We propose several embeddings and recall that an isometric embedding in a Banach space is always possible while an isometric embedding in a Hilbert space is only possible for certain metric spaces. As a result, we obtain a general maximum margin classification algorithm for arbitrary metric spaces (whose solution is approximated by an algorithm of Graepel. Interestingly enough, the embedding approach, when applied to a metric which can be embedded into a Hilbert space, yields the SVM algorithm, which emphasizes the fact that its solution depends on the metric and not on the kernel. Furthermore we give upper bounds of the capacity of the function classes corresponding to both embeddings in terms of Rademacher averages. Finally we compare the capacities of these function classes directly.

ei

PDF PDF DOI [BibTex]

PDF PDF DOI [BibTex]


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Selective integration of multiple biological data for supervised network inference

Kato, T., Tsuda, K., Asai, K.

Bioinformatics, 21(10):2488 , October 2005 (article)

ei

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Assessing Approximate Inference for Binary Gaussian Process Classification

Kuss, M., Rasmussen, C.

Journal of Machine Learning Research, 6, pages: 1679 , October 2005 (article)

Abstract
Gaussian process priors can be used to define flexible, probabilistic classification models. Unfortunately exact Bayesian inference is analytically intractable and various approximation techniques have been proposed. In this work we review and compare Laplace‘s method and Expectation Propagation for approximate Bayesian inference in the binary Gaussian process classification model. We present a comprehensive comparison of the approximations, their predictive performance and marginal likelihood estimates to results obtained by MCMC sampling. We explain theoretically and corroborate empirically the advantages of Expectation Propagation compared to Laplace‘s method.

ei

PDF PDF [BibTex]

PDF PDF [BibTex]


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Clustering on the Unit Hypersphere using von Mises-Fisher Distributions

Banerjee, A., Dhillon, I., Ghosh, J., Sra, S.

Journal of Machine Learning Research, 6, pages: 1345-1382, September 2005 (article)

Abstract
Several large scale data mining applications, such as text categorization and gene expression analysis, involve high-dimensional data that is also inherently directional in nature. Often such data is L2 normalized so that it lies on the surface of a unit hypersphere. Popular models such as (mixtures of) multi-variate Gaussians are inadequate for characterizing such data. This paper proposes a generative mixture-model approach to clustering directional data based on the von Mises-Fisher (vMF) distribution, which arises naturally for data distributed on the unit hypersphere. In particular, we derive and analyze two variants of the Expectation Maximization (EM) framework for estimating the mean and concentration parameters of this mixture. Numerical estimation of the concentration parameters is non-trivial in high dimensions since it involves functional inversion of ratios of Bessel functions. We also formulate two clustering algorithms corresponding to the variants of EM that we derive. Our approach provides a theoretical basis for the use of cosine similarity that has been widely employed by the information retrieval community, and obtains the spherical kmeans algorithm (kmeans with cosine similarity) as a special case of both variants. Empirical results on clustering of high-dimensional text and gene-expression data based on a mixture of vMF distributions show that the ability to estimate the concentration parameter for each vMF component, which is not present in existing approaches, yields superior results, especially for difficult clustering tasks in high-dimensional spaces.

ei

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Support Vector Machines for 3D Shape Processing

Steinke, F., Schölkopf, B., Blanz, V.

Computer Graphics Forum, 24(3, EUROGRAPHICS 2005):285-294, September 2005 (article)

Abstract
We propose statistical learning methods for approximating implicit surfaces and computing dense 3D deformation fields. Our approach is based on Support Vector (SV) Machines, which are state of the art in machine learning. It is straightforward to implement and computationally competitive; its parameters can be automatically set using standard machine learning methods. The surface approximation is based on a modified Support Vector regression. We present applications to 3D head reconstruction, including automatic removal of outliers and hole filling. In a second step, we build on our SV representation to compute dense 3D deformation fields between two objects. The fields are computed using a generalized SVMachine enforcing correspondence between the previously learned implicit SV object representations, as well as correspondences between feature points if such points are available. We apply the method to the morphing of 3D heads and other objects.

ei

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Fast Protein Classification with Multiple Networks

Tsuda, K., Shin, H., Schölkopf, B.

Bioinformatics, 21(Suppl. 2):59-65, September 2005 (article)

Abstract
Support vector machines (SVM) have been successfully used to classify proteins into functional categories. Recently, to integrate multiple data sources, a semidefinite programming (SDP) based SVM method was introduced Lanckriet et al (2004). In SDP/SVM, multiple kernel matrices corresponding to each of data sources are combined with weights obtained by solving an SDP. However, when trying to apply SDP/SVM to large problems, the computational cost can become prohibitive, since both converting the data to a kernel matrix for the SVM and solving the SDP are time and memory demanding. Another application-specific drawback arises when some of the data sources are protein networks. A common method of converting the network to a kernel matrix is the diffusion kernel method, which has time complexity of O(n^3), and produces a dense matrix of size n x n. We propose an efficient method of protein classification using multiple protein networks. Available protein networks, such as a physical interaction network or a metabolic network, can be directly incorporated. Vectorial data can also be incorporated after conversion into a network by means of neighbor point connection. Similarly to the SDP/SVM method, the combination weights are obtained by convex optimization. Due to the sparsity of network edges, the computation time is nearly linear in the number of edges of the combined network. Additionally, the combination weights provide information useful for discarding noisy or irrelevant networks. Experiments on function prediction of 3588 yeast proteins show promising results: the computation time is enormously reduced, while the accuracy is still comparable to the SDP/SVM method.

ei

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]


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Iterative Kernel Principal Component Analysis for Image Modeling

Kim, K., Franz, M., Schölkopf, B.

IEEE Transactions on Pattern Analysis and Machine Intelligence, 27(9):1351-1366, September 2005 (article)

Abstract
In recent years, Kernel Principal Component Analysis (KPCA) has been suggested for various image processing tasks requiring an image model such as, e.g., denoising or compression. The original form of KPCA, however, can be only applied to strongly restricted image classes due to the limited number of training examples that can be processed. We therefore propose a new iterative method for performing KPCA, the Kernel Hebbian Algorithm which iteratively estimates the Kernel Principal Components with only linear order memory complexity. In our experiments, we compute models for complex image classes such as faces and natural images which require a large number of training examples. The resulting image models are tested in single-frame super-resolution and denoising applications. The KPCA model is not specifically tailored to these tasks; in fact, the same model can be used in super-resolution with variable input resolution, or denoising with unknown noise characteristics. In spite of this, both super-resolution a nd denoising performance are comparable to existing methods.

ei

Web DOI [BibTex]

Web DOI [BibTex]


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Phenotypic characterization of chondrosarcoma-derived cell lines

Schorle, C., Finger, F., Zien, A., Block, J., Gebhard, P., Aigner, T.

Cancer Letters, 226(2):143-154, August 2005 (article)

Abstract
Gene expression profiling of three chondrosarcoma derived cell lines (AD, SM, 105KC) showed an increased proliferative activity and a reduced expression of chondrocytic-typical matrix products compared to primary chondrocytes. The incapability to maintain an adequate matrix synthesis as well as a notable proliferative activity at the same time is comparable to neoplastic chondrosarcoma cells in vivo which cease largely cartilage matrix formation as soon as their proliferative activity increases. Thus, the investigated cell lines are of limited value as substitute of primary chondrocytes but might have a much higher potential to investigate the behavior of neoplastic chondrocytes, i.e. chondrosarcoma biology.

ei

Web [BibTex]

Web [BibTex]


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Local Rademacher Complexities

Bartlett, P., Bousquet, O., Mendelson, S.

The Annals of Statistics, 33(4):1497-1537, August 2005 (article)

Abstract
We propose new bounds on the error of learning algorithms in terms of a data-dependent notion of complexity. The estimates we establish give optimal rates and are based on a local and empirical version of Rademacher averages, in the sense that the Rademacher averages are computed from the data, on a subset of functions with small empirical error. We present some applications to classification and prediction with convex function classes, and with kernel classes in particular.

ei

PDF PostScript Web [BibTex]

PDF PostScript Web [BibTex]


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Learning the Kernel with Hyperkernels

Ong, CS., Smola, A., Williamson, R.

Journal of Machine Learning Research, 6, pages: 1043-1071, July 2005 (article)

Abstract
This paper addresses the problem of choosing a kernel suitable for estimation with a Support Vector Machine, hence further automating machine learning. This goal is achieved by defining a Reproducing Kernel Hilbert Space on the space of kernels itself. Such a formulation leads to a statistical estimation problem similar to the problem of minimizing a regularized risk functional. We state the equivalent representer theorem for the choice of kernels and present a semidefinite programming formulation of the resulting optimization problem. Several recipes for constructing hyperkernels are provided, as well as the details of common machine learning problems. Experimental results for classification, regression and novelty detection on UCI data show the feasibility of our approach.

ei

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Image Reconstruction by Linear Programming

Tsuda, K., Rätsch, G.

IEEE Transactions on Image Processing, 14(6):737-744, June 2005 (article)

Abstract
One way of image denoising is to project a noisy image to the subspace of admissible images derived, for instance, by PCA. However, a major drawback of this method is that all pixels are updated by the projection, even when only a few pixels are corrupted by noise or occlusion. We propose a new method to identify the noisy pixels by l1-norm penalization and to update the identified pixels only. The identification and updating of noisy pixels are formulated as one linear program which can be efficiently solved. In particular, one can apply the upsilon trick to directly specify the fraction of pixels to be reconstructed. Moreover, we extend the linear program to be able to exploit prior knowledge that occlusions often appear in contiguous blocks (e.g., sunglasses on faces). The basic idea is to penalize boundary points and interior points of the occluded area differently. We are also able to show the upsilon property for this extended LP leading to a method which is easy to use. Experimental results demonstrate the power of our approach.

ei

PDF DOI [BibTex]

PDF DOI [BibTex]


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RASE: recognition of alternatively spliced exons in C.elegans

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

Bioinformatics, 21(Suppl. 1):i369-i377, June 2005 (article)

ei

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]


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

Tsuda, K., Rätsch, G., Warmuth, M.

Journal of Machine Learning Research, 6, pages: 995-1018, June 2005 (article)

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 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 derivation and the analyses of the original EG update and AdaBoost generalize to the non-diagonal case. We apply the resulting matrix exponentiated gradient (MEG) update and DefiniteBoost to the problem of learning a kernel matrix from distance measurements.

ei

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Texture and haptic cues in slant discrimination: Reliability-based cue weighting without statistically optimal cue combination

Rosas, P., Wagemans, J., Ernst, M., Wichmann, F.

Journal of the Optical Society of America A, 22(5):801-809, May 2005 (article)

Abstract
A number of models of depth cue combination suggest that the final depth percept results from a weighted average of independent depth estimates based on the different cues available. The weight of each cue in such an average is thought to depend on the reliability of each cue. In principle, such a depth estimation could be statistically optimal in the sense of producing the minimum variance unbiased estimator that can be constructed from the available information. Here we test such models using visual and haptic depth information. Different texture types produce differences in slant discrimination performance, providing a means for testing a reliability-sensitive cue combination model using texture as one of the cues to slant. Our results show that the weights for the cues were generally sensitive to their reliability, but fell short of statistically optimal combination—we find reliability-based re-weighting, but not statistically optimal cue combination.

ei

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Bayesian inference for psychometric functions

Kuss, M., Jäkel, F., Wichmann, F.

Journal of Vision, 5(5):478-492, May 2005 (article)

Abstract
In psychophysical studies, the psychometric function is used to model the relation between physical stimulus intensity and the observer’s ability to detect or discriminate between stimuli of different intensities. In this study, we propose the use of Bayesian inference to extract the information contained in experimental data to estimate the parameters of psychometric functions. Because 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 parameterization of psychometric functions and the role of prior distributions in the analysis. The proposed approach is exemplified using artificially generated 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 and find the Bayesian approach to be superior.

ei

PDF PDF DOI [BibTex]

PDF PDF DOI [BibTex]


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A gene expression map of Arabidopsis thaliana development

Schmid, M., Davison, T., Henz, S., Pape, U., Demar, M., Vingron, M., Schölkopf, B., Weigel, D., Lohmann, J.

Nature Genetics, 37(5):501-506, April 2005 (article)

Abstract
Regulatory regions of plant genes tend to be more compact than those of animal genes, but the complement of transcription factors encoded in plant genomes is as large or larger than that found in those of animals. Plants therefore provide an opportunity to study how transcriptional programs control multicellular development. We analyzed global gene expression during development of the reference plant Arabidopsis thaliana in samples covering many stages, from embryogenesis to senescence, and diverse organs. Here, we provide a first analysis of this data set, which is part of the AtGenExpress expression atlas. We observed that the expression levels of transcription factor genes and signal transduction components are similar to those of metabolic genes. Examining the expression patterns of large gene families, we found that they are often more similar than would be expected by chance, indicating that many gene families have been co-opted for specific developmental processes.

ei

PDF DOI [BibTex]

PDF DOI [BibTex]


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Experimentally optimal v in support vector regression for different noise models and parameter settings

Chalimourda, A., Schölkopf, B., Smola, A.

Neural Networks, 18(2):205-205, March 2005 (article)

ei

PDF DOI [BibTex]

PDF DOI [BibTex]


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Invariance of Neighborhood Relation under Input Space to Feature Space Mapping

Shin, H., Cho, S.

Pattern Recognition Letters, 26(6):707-718, 2005 (article)

Abstract
If the training pattern set is large, it takes a large memory and a long time to train support vector machine (SVM). Recently, we proposed neighborhood property based pattern selection algorithm (NPPS) which selects only the patterns that are likely to be near the decision boundary ahead of SVM training [Proc. of the 7th Pacific-Asia Conference on Knowledge Discovery and Data Mining (PAKDD), Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence (LNAI 2637), Seoul, Korea, pp. 376–387]. NPPS tries to identify those patterns that are likely to become support vectors in feature space. Preliminary reports show its effectiveness: SVM training time was reduced by two orders of magnitude with almost no loss in accuracy for various datasets. It has to be noted, however, that decision boundary of SVM and support vectors are all defined in feature space while NPPS described above operates in input space. If neighborhood relation in input space is not preserved in feature space, NPPS may not always be effective. In this paper, we sh ow that the neighborhood relation is invariant under input to feature space mapping. The result assures that the patterns selected by NPPS in input space are likely to be located near decision boundary in feature space.

ei

PDF PDF [BibTex]

PDF PDF [BibTex]


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Theory of Classification: A Survey of Some Recent Advances

Boucheron, S., Bousquet, O., Lugosi, G.

ESAIM: Probability and Statistics, 9, pages: 323 , 2005 (article)

Abstract
The last few years have witnessed important new developments in the theory and practice of pattern classification. We intend to survey some of the main new ideas that have lead to these important recent developments.

ei

PDF DOI [BibTex]

PDF DOI [BibTex]


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Moment Inequalities for Functions of Independent Random Variables

Boucheron, S., Bousquet, O., Lugosi, G., Massart, P.

To appear in Annals of Probability, 33, pages: 514-560, 2005 (article)

Abstract
A general method for obtaining moment inequalities for functions of independent random variables is presented. It is a generalization of the entropy method which has been used to derive concentration inequalities for such functions cite{BoLuMa01}, and is based on a generalized tensorization inequality due to Lata{l}a and Oleszkiewicz cite{LaOl00}. The new inequalities prove to be a versatile tool in a wide range of applications. We illustrate the power of the method by showing how it can be used to effortlessly re-derive classical inequalities including Rosenthal and Kahane-Khinchine-type inequalities for sums of independent random variables, moment inequalities for suprema of empirical processes, and moment inequalities for Rademacher chaos and $U$-statistics. Some of these corollaries are apparently new. In particular, we generalize Talagrands exponential inequality for Rademacher chaos of order two to any order. We also discuss applications for other complex functions of independent random variables, such as suprema of boolean polynomials which include, as special cases, subgraph counting problems in random graphs.

ei

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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A tutorial on v-support vector machines

Chen, P., Lin, C., Schölkopf, B.

Applied Stochastic Models in Business and Industry, 21(2):111-136, 2005 (article)

Abstract
We briefly describe the main ideas of statistical learning theory, support vector machines (SVMs), and kernel feature spaces. We place particular emphasis on a description of the so-called -SVM, including details of the algorithm and its implementation, theoretical results, and practical applications. Copyright © 2005 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

ei

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Robust EEG Channel Selection Across Subjects for Brain Computer Interfaces

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

EURASIP Journal on Applied Signal Processing, 2005(19, Special Issue: Trends in Brain Computer Interfaces):3103-3112, (Editors: Vesin, J. M., T. Ebrahimi), 2005 (article)

Abstract
Most EEG-based Brain Computer Interface (BCI) paradigms come along with specific electrode positions, e.g.~for a visual based BCI electrode positions close to the primary visual cortex are used. For new BCI paradigms it is usually not known where task relevant activity can be measured from the scalp. For individual subjects Lal et.~al showed that recording positions can be found without the use of prior knowledge about the paradigm used. However it remains unclear to what extend their method of Recursive Channel Elimination (RCE) can be generalized across subjects. In this paper we transfer channel rankings from a group of subjects to a new subject. For motor imagery tasks the results are promising, although cross-subject channel selection does not quite achieve the performance of channel selection on data of single subjects. Although the RCE method was not provided with prior knowledge about the mental task, channels that are well known to be important (from a physiological point of view) were consistently selected whereas task-irrelevant channels were reliably disregarded.

ei

Web DOI [BibTex]

Web DOI [BibTex]

2001


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Regularized principal manifolds

Smola, A., Mika, S., Schölkopf, B., Williamson, R.

Journal of Machine Learning Research, 1, pages: 179-209, June 2001 (article)

Abstract
Many settings of unsupervised learning can be viewed as quantization problems - the minimization of the expected quantization error subject to some restrictions. This allows the use of tools such as regularization from the theory of (supervised) risk minimization for unsupervised learning. This setting turns out to be closely related to principal curves, the generative topographic map, and robust coding. We explore this connection in two ways: (1) we propose an algorithm for finding principal manifolds that can be regularized in a variety of ways; and (2) we derive uniform convergence bounds and hence bounds on the learning rates of the algorithm. In particular, we give bounds on the covering numbers which allows us to obtain nearly optimal learning rates for certain types of regularization operators. Experimental results demonstrate the feasibility of the approach.

ei

PDF [BibTex]

2001


PDF [BibTex]


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The psychometric function: II. Bootstrap-based confidence intervals and sampling

Wichmann, F., Hill, N.

Perception and Psychophysics, 63 (8), pages: 1314-1329, 2001 (article)

ei

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]