Phase Transitions in Sparse PCA Machine Learning

We study optimal estimation for sparse principal component analysis when the number of non-zero elements is small but on the same order as the dimension of the data. We employ approximate message passing (AMP) algorithm and its state evolution to analyze what is the information theoretically minimal mean-squared error and the one achieved by AMP in the limit of large sizes. For a special case of rank one and large enough density of non-zeros Deshpande and Montanari [1] proved that AMP is asymptotically optimal. We show that both for low density and for large rank the problem undergoes a series of phase transitions suggesting existence of a region of parameters where estimation is information theoretically possible, but AMP (and presumably every other polynomial algorithm) fails. The analysis of the large rank limit is particularly instructive.

Statistical mechanics of low-rank tensor decomposition

Neural Information Processing Systems

Often, large, high dimensional datasets collected across multiple modalities can be organized as a higher order tensor. Low-rank tensor decomposition then arises as a powerful and widely used tool to discover simple low dimensional structures underlying such data. However, we currently lack a theoretical understanding of the algorithmic behavior of low-rank tensor decompositions. We derive Bayesian approximate message passing (AMP) algorithms for recovering arbitrarily shaped low-rank tensors buried within noise, and we employ dynamic mean field theory to precisely characterize their performance. Our theory reveals the existence of phase transitions between easy, hard and impossible inference regimes, and displays an excellent match with simulations. Moreover, it reveals several qualitative surprises compared to the behavior of symmetric, cubic tensor decomposition. Finally, we compare our AMP algorithm to the most commonly used algorithm, alternating least squares (ALS), and demonstrate that AMP significantly outperforms ALS in the presence of noise.

MMSE of probabilistic low-rank matrix estimation: Universality with respect to the output channel Machine Learning

This paper considers probabilistic estimation of a low-rank matrix from non-linear element-wise measurements of its elements. We derive the corresponding approximate message passing (AMP) algorithm and its state evolution. Relying on non-rigorous but standard assumptions motivated by statistical physics, we characterize the minimum mean squared error (MMSE) achievable information theoretically and with the AMP algorithm. Unlike in related problems of linear estimation, in the present setting the MMSE depends on the output channel only trough a single parameter - its Fisher information. We illustrate this striking finding by analysis of submatrix localization, and of detection of communities hidden in a dense stochastic block model. For this example we locate the computational and statistical boundaries that are not equal for rank larger than four.

Approximate Survey Propagation for Statistical Inference Machine Learning

Approximate message passing algorithm enjoyed considerable attention in the last decade. In this paper we introduce a variant of the AMP algorithm that takes into account glassy nature of the system under consideration. We coin this algorithm as the approximate survey propagation (ASP) and derive it for a class of low-rank matrix estimation problems. We derive the state evolution for the ASP algorithm and prove that it reproduces the one-step replica symmetry breaking (1RSB) fixed-point equations, well-known in physics of disordered systems. Our derivation thus gives a concrete algorithmic meaning to the 1RSB equations that is of independent interest. We characterize the performance of ASP in terms of convergence and mean-squared error as a function of the free Parisi parameter s. We conclude that when there is a model mismatch between the true generative model and the inference model, the performance of AMP rapidly degrades both in terms of MSE and of convergence, while ASP converges in a larger regime and can reach lower errors. Among other results, our analysis leads us to a striking hypothesis that whenever s (or other parameters) can be set in such a way that the Nishimori condition $M=Q>0$ is restored, then the corresponding algorithm is able to reach mean-squared error as low as the Bayes-optimal error obtained when the model and its parameters are known and exactly matched in the inference procedure.

Dense Limit of the Dawid-Skene Model for Crowdsourcing and Regions of Sub-optimality of Message Passing Algorithms Machine Learning

Crowdsourcing is a strategy to categorize data through the contribution of many individuals. A wide range of theoretical and algorithmic contributions are based on the model of Dawid and Skene [1]. Recently it was shown in [2,3] that, in certain regimes, belief propagation is asymptotically optimal for data generated from the Dawid-Skene model. This paper is motivated by this recent progress. We analyze the dense limit of the Dawid-Skene model. It is shown that it belongs to a larger class of low-rank matrix estimation problems for which it is possible to express the asymptotic, Bayes-optimal, performance in a simple closed form. In the dense limit the mapping to a low-rank matrix estimation problem provides an approximate message passing algorithm that solves the problem algorithmically. We identify the regions where the algorithm efficiently computes the Bayes-optimal estimates. Our analysis refines the results of [2,3] about optimality of message passing algorithms by characterizing regions of parameters where these algorithms do not match the Bayes-optimal performance. We further study numerically the performance of approximate message passing, derived in the dense limit, on sparse instances and carry out experiments on a real world dataset.