Collaborating Authors

Approximating Instance-Dependent Noise via Instance-Confidence Embedding Machine Learning

Label noise in multiclass classification is a major obstacle to the deployment of learning systems. However, unlike the widely used class-conditional noise (CCN) assumption that the noisy label is independent of the input feature given the true label, label noise in real-world datasets can be aleatory and heavily dependent on individual instances. In this work, we investigate the instance-dependent noise (IDN) model and propose an efficient approximation of IDN to capture the instance-specific label corruption. Concretely, noting the fact that most columns of the IDN transition matrix have only limited influence on the class-posterior estimation, we propose a variational approximation that uses a single-scalar confidence parameter. To cope with the situation where the mapping from the instance to its confidence value could vary significantly for two adjacent instances, we suggest using instance embedding that assigns a trainable parameter to each instance. The resulting instance-confidence embedding (ICE) method not only performs well under label noise but also can effectively detect ambiguous or mislabeled instances. We validate its utility on various image and text classification tasks.

Identifying Mislabeled Data using the Area Under the Margin Ranking Machine Learning

Not all data in a typical training set help with generalization; some samples can be overly ambiguous or outrightly mislabeled. This paper introduces a new method to identify such samples and mitigate their impact when training neural networks. At the heart of our algorithm is the Area Under the Margin (AUM) statistic, which exploits differences in the training dynamics of clean and mislabeled samples. A simple procedure - adding an extra class populated with purposefully mislabeled indicator samples - learns a threshold that isolates mislabeled data based on this metric. This approach consistently improves upon prior work on synthetic and real-world datasets. On the WebVision50 classification task our method removes 17% of training data, yielding a 2.6% (absolute) improvement in test error. On CIFAR100 removing 13% of the data leads to a 1.2% drop in error.

Adversarial Detection and Correction by Matching Prediction Distributions Machine Learning

We present a novel adversarial detection and correction method for machine learning classifiers.The detector consists of an autoencoder trained with a custom loss function based on the Kullback-Leibler divergence between the classifier predictions on the original and reconstructed instances.The method is unsupervised, easy to train and does not require any knowledge about the underlying attack. The detector almost completely neutralises powerful attacks like Carlini-Wagner or SLIDE on MNIST and Fashion-MNIST, and remains very effective on CIFAR-10 when the attack is granted full access to the classification model but not the defence. We show that our method is still able to detect the adversarial examples in the case of a white-box attack where the attacker has full knowledge of both the model and the defence and investigate the robustness of the attack. The method is very flexible and can also be used to detect common data corruptions and perturbations which negatively impact the model performance. We illustrate this capability on the CIFAR-10-C dataset.

Identifying Mislabeled Training Data

Journal of Artificial Intelligence Research

This paper presents a new approach to identifying and eliminating mislabeled training instances for supervised learning. The goal of this approach is to improve classification accuracies produced by learning algorithms by improving the quality of the training data. Our approach uses a set of learning algorithms to create classifiers that serve as noise filters for the training data. We evaluate single algorithm, majority vote and consensus filters on five datasets that are prone to labeling errors. Our experiments illustrate that filtering significantly improves classification accuracy for noise levels up to 30 percent. An analytical and empirical evaluation of the precision of our approach shows that consensus filters are conservative at throwing away good data at the expense of retaining bad data and that majority filters are better at detecting bad data at the expense of throwing away good data. This suggests that for situations in which there is a paucity of data, consensus filters are preferable, whereas majority vote filters are preferable for situations with an abundance of data.

Pushing the right boundaries matters! Wasserstein Adversarial Training for Label Noise Machine Learning

Noisy labels often occur in vision datasets, especially when they are issued from crowdsourcing or Web scraping. In this paper, we propose a new regularization method which enables one to learn robust classifiers in presence of noisy data. To achieve this goal, we augment the virtual adversarial loss with a Wasserstein distance. This distance allows us to take into account specific relations between classes by leveraging on the geometric properties of this optimal transport distance. Notably, we encode the class similarities in the ground cost that is used to compute the Wasserstein distance. As a consequence, we can promote smoothness between classes that are very dissimilar, while keeping the classification decision function sufficiently complex for similar classes. While designing this ground cost can be left as a problem-specific modeling task, we show in this paper that using the semantic relations between classes names already leads to good results.Our proposed Wasserstein Adversarial Training (WAT) outperforms state of the art on four datasets corrupted with noisy labels: three classical benchmarks and one real case in remote sensing image semantic segmentation.