Models, code, and papers for "Mark Coates":

We consider the problem of multivariate regression in a setting where the relevant predictors could be shared among different responses. We propose an algorithm which decomposes the coefficient matrix into the product of a long matrix and a wide matrix, with an elastic net penalty on the former and an $\ell_1$ penalty on the latter. The first matrix linearly transforms the predictors to a set of latent factors, and the second one regresses the responses on these factors. Our algorithm simultaneously performs dimension reduction and coefficient estimation and automatically estimates the number of latent factors from the data. Our formulation results in a non-convex optimization problem, which despite its flexibility to impose effective low-dimensional structure, is difficult, or even impossible, to solve exactly in a reasonable time. We specify an optimization algorithm based on alternating minimization with three different sets of updates to solve this non-convex problem and provide theoretical results on its convergence and optimality. Finally, we demonstrate the effectiveness of our algorithm via experiments on simulated and real data.

In this paper, we consider a generalized multivariate regression problem where the responses are monotonic functions of linear transformations of predictors. We propose a semi-parametric algorithm based on the ordering of the responses which is invariant to the functional form of the transformation function. We prove that our algorithm, which maximizes the rank correlation of responses and linear transformations of predictors, is a consistent estimator of the true coefficient matrix. We also identify the rate of convergence and show that the squared estimation error decays with a rate of $o(1/\sqrt{n})$. We then propose a greedy algorithm to maximize the highly non-smooth objective function of our model and examine its performance through extensive simulations. Finally, we compare our algorithm with traditional multivariate regression algorithms over synthetic and real data.

Knowing the largest rate at which data can be sent on an end-to-end path such that the egress rate is equal to the ingress rate with high probability can be very practical when choosing transmission rates in video streaming or selecting peers in peer-to-peer applications. We introduce probabilistic available bandwidth, which is defined in terms of ingress rates and egress rates of traffic on a path, rather than in terms of capacity and utilization of the constituent links of the path like the standard available bandwidth metric. In this paper, we describe a distributed algorithm, based on a probabilistic graphical model and Bayesian active learning, for simultaneously estimating the probabilistic available bandwidth of multiple paths through a network. Our procedure exploits the fact that each packet train provides information not only about the path it traverses, but also about any path that shares a link with the monitored path. Simulations and PlanetLab experiments indicate that this process can dramatically reduce the number of probes required to generate accurate estimates.

We address the task of identifying densely connected subsets of multivariate Gaussian random variables within a graphical model framework. We propose two novel estimators based on the Ordered Weighted $\ell_1$ (OWL) norm: 1) The Graphical OWL (GOWL) is a penalized likelihood method that applies the OWL norm to the lower triangle components of the precision matrix. 2) The column-by-column Graphical OWL (ccGOWL) estimates the precision matrix by performing OWL regularized linear regressions. Both methods can simultaneously identify highly correlated groups of variables and control the sparsity in the resulting precision matrix. We formulate GOWL such that it solves a composite optimization problem and establish that the estimator has a unique global solution. In addition, we prove sufficient grouping conditions for each column of the ccGOWL precision matrix estimate. We propose proximal descent algorithms to find the optimum for both estimators. For synthetic data where group structure is present, the ccGOWL estimator requires significantly reduced computation and achieves similar or greater accuracy than state-of-the-art estimators. Timing comparisons are presented and demonstrates the superior computational efficiency of the ccGOWL. We illustrate the grouping performance of the ccGOWL method on a cancer gene expression data set and an equities data set.

This paper describes a graph clustering algorithm that aims to minimize the normalized cut criterion and has a model order selection procedure. The performance of the proposed algorithm is comparable to spectral approaches in terms of minimizing normalized cut. However, unlike spectral approaches, the proposed algorithm scales to graphs with millions of nodes and edges. The algorithm consists of three components that are processed sequentially: a greedy agglomerative hierarchical clustering procedure, model order selection, and a local refinement. For a graph of n nodes and O(n) edges, the computational complexity of the algorithm is O(n log^2 n), a major improvement over the O(n^3) complexity of spectral methods. Experiments are performed on real and synthetic networks to demonstrate the scalability of the proposed approach, the effectiveness of the model order selection procedure, and the performance of the proposed algorithm in terms of minimizing the normalized cut metric.

Recently, techniques for applying convolutional neural networks to graph-structured data have emerged. Graph convolutional neural networks (GCNNs) have been used to address node and graph classification and matrix completion. Although the performance has been impressive, the current implementations have limited capability to incorporate uncertainty in the graph structure. Almost all GCNNs process a graph as though it is a ground-truth depiction of the relationship between nodes, but often the graphs employed in applications are themselves derived from noisy data or modelling assumptions. Spurious edges may be included; other edges may be missing between nodes that have very strong relationships. In this paper we adopt a Bayesian approach, viewing the observed graph as a realization from a parametric family of random graphs. We then target inference of the joint posterior of the random graph parameters and the node (or graph) labels. We present the Bayesian GCNN framework and develop an iterative learning procedure for the case of assortative mixed-membership stochastic block models. We present the results of experiments that demonstrate that the Bayesian formulation can provide better performance when there are very few labels available during the training process.

Decentralized receding horizon control (D-RHC) provides a mechanism for coordination in multi-agent settings without a centralized command center. However, combining a set of different goals, costs, and constraints to form an efficient optimization objective for D-RHC can be difficult. To allay this problem, we use a meta-learning process -- cost adaptation -- which generates the optimization objective for D-RHC to solve based on a set of human-generated priors (cost and constraint functions) and an auxiliary heuristic. We use this adaptive D-RHC method for control of mesh-networked swarm agents. This formulation allows a wide range of tasks to be encoded and can account for network delays, heterogeneous capabilities, and increasingly large swarms through the adaptation mechanism. We leverage the Unity3D game engine to build a simulator capable of introducing artificial networking failures and delays in the swarm. Using the simulator we validate our method on an example coordinated exploration task. We demonstrate that cost adaptation allows for more efficient and safer task completion under varying environment conditions and increasingly large swarm sizes. We release our simulator and code to the community for future work.

Microwave-based breast cancer detection has been proposed as a complementary approach to compensate for some drawbacks of existing breast cancer detection techniques. Among the existing microwave breast cancer detection methods, machine learning-type algorithms have recently become more popular. These focus on detecting the existence of breast tumours rather than performing imaging to identify the exact tumour position. A key step of the machine learning approaches is feature extraction. One of the most widely used feature extraction method is principle component analysis (PCA). However, it can be sensitive to signal misalignment. This paper presents an empirical mode decomposition (EMD)-based feature extraction method, which is more robust to the misalignment. Experimental results involving clinical data sets combined with numerically simulated tumour responses show that combined features from EMD and PCA improve the detection performance with an ensemble selection-based classifier.

This paper presents greedy gossip with eavesdropping (GGE), a novel randomized gossip algorithm for distributed computation of the average consensus problem. In gossip algorithms, nodes in the network randomly communicate with their neighbors and exchange information iteratively. The algorithms are simple and decentralized, making them attractive for wireless network applications. In general, gossip algorithms are robust to unreliable wireless conditions and time varying network topologies. In this paper we introduce GGE and demonstrate that greedy updates lead to rapid convergence. We do not require nodes to have any location information. Instead, greedy updates are made possible by exploiting the broadcast nature of wireless communications. During the operation of GGE, when a node decides to gossip, instead of choosing one of its neighbors at random, it makes a greedy selection, choosing the node which has the value most different from its own. In order to make this selection, nodes need to know their neighbors' values. Therefore, we assume that all transmissions are wireless broadcasts and nodes keep track of their neighbors' values by eavesdropping on their communications. We show that the convergence of GGE is guaranteed for connected network topologies. We also study the rates of convergence and illustrate, through theoretical bounds and numerical simulations, that GGE consistently outperforms randomized gossip and performs comparably to geographic gossip on moderate-sized random geometric graph topologies.

Keyword spotting (KWS) constitutes a major component of human-technology interfaces. Maximizing the detection accuracy at a low false alarm (FA) rate, while minimizing the footprint size, latency and complexity are the goals for KWS. Towards achieving them, we study Convolutional Recurrent Neural Networks (CRNNs). Inspired by large-scale state-of-the-art speech recognition systems, we combine the strengths of convolutional layers and recurrent layers to exploit local structure and long-range context. We analyze the effect of architecture parameters, and propose training strategies to improve performance. With only ~230k parameters, our CRNN model yields acceptably low latency, and achieves 97.71% accuracy at 0.5 FA/hour for 5 dB signal-to-noise ratio.

In this work, we perform an empirical comparison among the CTC, RNN-Transducer, and attention-based Seq2Seq models for end-to-end speech recognition. We show that, without any language model, Seq2Seq and RNN-Transducer models both outperform the best reported CTC models with a language model, on the popular Hub5'00 benchmark. On our internal diverse dataset, these trends continue - RNNTransducer models rescored with a language model after beam search outperform our best CTC models. These results simplify the speech recognition pipeline so that decoding can now be expressed purely as neural network operations. We also study how the choice of encoder architecture affects the performance of the three models - when all encoder layers are forward only, and when encoders downsample the input representation aggressively.

Replacing hand-engineered pipelines with end-to-end deep learning systems has enabled strong results in applications like speech and object recognition. However, the causality and latency constraints of production systems put end-to-end speech models back into the underfitting regime and expose biases in the model that we show cannot be overcome by "scaling up", i.e., training bigger models on more data. In this work we systematically identify and address sources of bias, reducing error rates by up to 20% while remaining practical for deployment. We achieve this by utilizing improved neural architectures for streaming inference, solving optimization issues, and employing strategies that increase audio and label modelling versatility.

We show that an end-to-end deep learning approach can be used to recognize either English or Mandarin Chinese speech--two vastly different languages. Because it replaces entire pipelines of hand-engineered components with neural networks, end-to-end learning allows us to handle a diverse variety of speech including noisy environments, accents and different languages. Key to our approach is our application of HPC techniques, resulting in a 7x speedup over our previous system. Because of this efficiency, experiments that previously took weeks now run in days. This enables us to iterate more quickly to identify superior architectures and algorithms. As a result, in several cases, our system is competitive with the transcription of human workers when benchmarked on standard datasets. Finally, using a technique called Batch Dispatch with GPUs in the data center, we show that our system can be inexpensively deployed in an online setting, delivering low latency when serving users at scale.