Active Learning for Probabilistic Hypotheses Using the Maximum Gibbs Error Criterion

Cuong, Nguyen Viet, Lee, Wee Sun, Ye, Nan, Chai, Kian Ming A., Chieu, Hai Leong

Neural Information Processing Systems 

We introduce a new objective function for pool-based Bayesian active learning with probabilistic hypotheses. This objective function, called the policy Gibbs error, is the expected error rate of a random classifier drawn from the prior distribution on the examples adaptively selected by the active learning policy. Exact maximization of the policy Gibbs error is hard, so we propose a greedy strategy that maximizes the Gibbs error at each iteration, where the Gibbs error on an instance is the expected error of a random classifier selected from the posterior label distribution on that instance. We apply this maximum Gibbs error criterion to three active learning scenarios: non-adaptive, adaptive, and batch active learning. In each scenario, we prove that the criterion achieves near-maximal policy Gibbs error when constrained to a fixed budget.