In this paper, we study cost-sensitive semi-supervised learning where many of the training examples are unlabeled and different misclassification errors are associated with unequal costs. This scenario occurs in many real-world applications. For example, in some disease diagnosis, the cost of erroneously diagnosing a patient as healthy is much higher than that of diagnosing a healthy person as a patient. Also, the acquisition of labeled data requires medical diagnosis which is expensive, while the collection of unlabeled data such as basic health information is much cheaper. We propose the CS4VM (Cost-Sensitive Semi-Supervised Support Vector Machine) to address this problem. We show that the CS4VM, when given the label means of the unlabeled data, closely approximates the supervised cost-sensitive SVM that has access to the ground-truth labels of all the unlabeled data. This observation leads to an efficient algorithm which first estimates the label means and then trains the CS4VM with the plug-in label means by an efficient SVM solver. Experiments on a broad range of data sets show that the proposed method is capable of reducing the total cost and is computationally efficient.
In this work we present a quadratic programming approximation of the Semi-Supervised Support Vector Machine (S3VM) problem, namely approximate QP-S3VM, that can be efficiently solved using off the shelf optimization packages. We prove that this approximate formulation establishes a relation between the low density separation and the graph-based models of semi-supervised learning (SSL) which is important to develop a unifying framework for semi-supervised learning methods. Furthermore, we propose the novel idea of representing SSL problems as submodular set functions and use efficient submodular optimization algorithms to solve them. Using this new idea we develop a representation of the approximate QP-S3VM as a maximization of a submodular set function which makes it possible to optimize using efficient greedy algorithms. We demonstrate that the proposed methods are accurate and provide significant improvement in time complexity over the state of the art in the literature.
Machine learning is undoubtedly on the rise, slowly climbing into'buzzword' territory. This is in large part due to misuse and simple misunderstanding of the topics that come with the term. Take a quick glance at the chart below and you'll see this illustrated quite clearly thanks to Google Trends' analysis of interest in the term over the last few years. However, the goal of this article is not to simply reflect on the popularity of machine learning. It is rather to explain and implement relevant machine learning algorithms in a clear and concise way.
Semi-supervised support vector machines (S3VMs) are a kind of popular approaches which try to improve learning performance by exploiting unlabeled data. Though S3VMs have been found helpful in many situations, they may degenerate performance and the resultant generalization ability may be even worse than using the labeled data only. In this paper, we try to reduce the chance of performance degeneration of S3VMs. Our basic idea is that, rather than exploiting all unlabeled data, the unlabeled instances should be selected such that only the ones which are very likely to be helpful are exploited, while some highly risky unlabeled instances are avoided. We propose the S3VM- us method by using hierarchical clustering to select the unlabeled instances. Experiments on a broad range of data sets over eighty-eight different settings show that the chance of performance degeneration of S3VM- us is much smaller than that of existing S3VMs.