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Authors:Roman Bresson, Giannis Nikolentzos, George Panagopoulos, Michail Chatzianastasis, Jun Pang, Michalis Vazirgiannis

Abstract:In recent years, Graph Neural Networks (GNNs) have become the de facto tool for learning node and graph representations. Most GNNs typically consist of a sequence of neighborhood aggregation (a.k.a., message passing) layers. Within each of these layers, the representation of each node is updated from an aggregation and transformation of its neighbours representations at the previous layer. The upper bound for the expressive power of message passing GNNs was reached through the use of MLPs as a transformation, due to their universal approximation capabilities. However, MLPs suffer from well-known limitations, which recently motivated the introduction of Kolmogorov-Arnold Networks (KANs). KANs rely on the Kolmogorov-Arnold representation theorem, rendering them a promising alternative to MLPs. In this work, we compare the performance of KANs against that of MLPs in graph learning tasks. We perform extensive experiments on node classification, graph classification and graph regression datasets. Our preliminary results indicate that while KANs are on-par with MLPs in classification tasks, they seem to have a clear advantage in the graph regression tasks.

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Authors:Iakovos Evdaimon, Giannis Nikolentzos, Michail Chatzianastasis, Hadi Abdine, Michalis Vazirgiannis

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Abstract:Graph generation has emerged as a crucial task in machine learning, with significant challenges in generating graphs that accurately reflect specific properties. Existing methods often fall short in efficiently addressing this need as they struggle with the high-dimensional complexity and varied nature of graph properties. In this paper, we introduce the Neural Graph Generator (NGG), a novel approach which utilizes conditioned latent diffusion models for graph generation. NGG demonstrates a remarkable capacity to model complex graph patterns, offering control over the graph generation process. NGG employs a variational graph autoencoder for graph compression and a diffusion process in the latent vector space, guided by vectors summarizing graph statistics. We demonstrate NGG's versatility across various graph generation tasks, showing its capability to capture desired graph properties and generalize to unseen graphs. This work signifies a significant shift in graph generation methodologies, offering a more practical and efficient solution for generating diverse types of graphs with specific characteristics.

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Abstract:In recent years, there has been a growing interest in mapping data from different domains to graph structures. Among others, neural network models such as the multi-layer perceptron (MLP) can be modeled as graphs. In fact, MLPs can be represented as directed acyclic graphs. Graph neural networks (GNNs) have recently become the standard tool for performing machine learning tasks on graphs. In this work, we show that an MLP is equivalent to an asynchronous message passing GNN model which operates on the MLP's graph representation. We then propose a new machine learning model for tabular data, the so-called Graph Neural Machine (GNM), which replaces the MLP's directed acyclic graph with a nearly complete graph and which employs a synchronous message passing scheme. We show that a single GNM model can simulate multiple MLP models. We evaluate the proposed model in several classification and regression datasets. In most cases, the GNM model outperforms the MLP architecture.

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Abstract:Irregularly sampled multivariate time series are ubiquitous in several application domains, leading to sparse, not fully-observed and non-aligned observations across different variables. Standard sequential neural network architectures, such as recurrent neural networks (RNNs) and convolutional neural networks (CNNs), consider regular spacing between observation times, posing significant challenges to irregular time series modeling. While most of the proposed architectures incorporate RNN variants to handle irregular time intervals, convolutional neural networks have not been adequately studied in the irregular sampling setting. In this paper, we parameterize convolutional layers by employing time-explicitly initialized kernels. Such general functions of time enhance the learning process of continuous-time hidden dynamics and can be efficiently incorporated into convolutional kernel weights. We, thus, propose the time-parameterized convolutional neural network (TPCNN), which shares similar properties with vanilla convolutions but is carefully designed for irregularly sampled time series. We evaluate TPCNN on both interpolation and classification tasks involving real-world irregularly sampled multivariate time series datasets. Our experimental results indicate the competitive performance of the proposed TPCNN model which is also significantly more efficient than other state-of-the-art methods. At the same time, the proposed architecture allows the interpretability of the input series by leveraging the combination of learnable time functions that improve the network performance in subsequent tasks and expedite the inaugural application of convolutions in this field.

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Abstract:Graph neural networks have become the standard approach for dealing with learning problems on graphs. Among the different variants of graph neural networks, graph attention networks (GATs) have been applied with great success to different tasks. In the GAT model, each node assigns an importance score to its neighbors using an attention mechanism. However, similar to other graph neural networks, GATs aggregate messages from nodes that belong to different classes, and therefore produce node representations that are not well separated with respect to the different classes, which might hurt their performance. In this work, to alleviate this problem, we propose a new technique that can be incorporated into any graph attention model to encourage higher attention scores between nodes that share the same class label. We evaluate the proposed method on several node classification datasets demonstrating increased performance over standard baseline models.

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Abstract:Graph neural networks (GNNs) have recently become the standard approach for learning with graph-structured data. Prior work has shed light into their potential, but also their limitations. Unfortunately, it was shown that standard GNNs are limited in their expressive power. These models are no more powerful than the 1-dimensional Weisfeiler-Leman (1-WL) algorithm in terms of distinguishing non-isomorphic graphs. In this paper, we propose Path Neural Networks (PathNNs), a model that updates node representations by aggregating paths emanating from nodes. We derive three different variants of the PathNN model that aggregate single shortest paths, all shortest paths and all simple paths of length up to K. We prove that two of these variants are strictly more powerful than the 1-WL algorithm, and we experimentally validate our theoretical results. We find that PathNNs can distinguish pairs of non-isomorphic graphs that are indistinguishable by 1-WL, while our most expressive PathNN variant can even distinguish between 3-WL indistinguishable graphs. The different PathNN variants are also evaluated on graph classification and graph regression datasets, where in most cases, they outperform the baseline methods.

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Abstract:In recent years, graph neural networks (GNNs) have achieved great success in the field of graph representation learning. Although prior work has shed light into the expressiveness of those models (\ie whether they can distinguish pairs of non-isomorphic graphs), it is still not clear what structural information is encoded into the node representations that are learned by those models. In this paper, we investigate which properties of graphs are captured purely by these models, when no node attributes are available. Specifically, we study four popular GNN models, and we show that two of them embed all nodes into the same feature vector, while the other two models generate representations that are related to the number of walks over the input graph. Strikingly, structurally dissimilar nodes can have similar representations at some layer $k>1$, if they have the same number of walks of length $k$. We empirically verify our theoretical findings on real datasets.

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Abstract:In recent years, graph neural networks (GNNs) have emerged as a promising tool for solving machine learning problems on graphs. Most GNNs are members of the family of message passing neural networks (MPNNs). There is a close connection between these models and the Weisfeiler-Leman (WL) test of isomorphism, an algorithm that can successfully test isomorphism for a broad class of graphs. Recently, much research has focused on measuring the expressive power of GNNs. For instance, it has been shown that standard MPNNs are at most as powerful as WL in terms of distinguishing non-isomorphic graphs. However, these studies have largely ignored the distances between the representations of nodes/graphs which are of paramount importance for learning tasks. In this paper, we define a distance function between nodes which is based on the hierarchy produced by the WL algorithm, and propose a model that learns representations which preserve those distances between nodes. Since the emerging hierarchy corresponds to a tree, to learn these representations, we capitalize on recent advances in the field of hyperbolic neural networks. We empirically evaluate the proposed model on standard node and graph classification datasets where it achieves competitive performance with state-of-the-art models.

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Abstract:Time series forecasting is at the core of important application domains posing significant challenges to machine learning algorithms. Recently neural network architectures have been widely applied to the problem of time series forecasting. Most of these models are trained by minimizing a loss function that measures predictions' deviation from the real values. Typical loss functions include mean squared error (MSE) and mean absolute error (MAE). In the presence of noise and uncertainty, neural network models tend to replicate the last observed value of the time series, thus limiting their applicability to real-world data. In this paper, we provide a formal definition of the above problem and we also give some examples of forecasts where the problem is observed. We also propose a regularization term penalizing the replication of previously seen values. We evaluate the proposed regularization term both on synthetic and real-world datasets. Our results indicate that the regularization term mitigates to some extent the aforementioned problem and gives rise to more robust models.

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Abstract:Image matching is a key component of many tasks in computer vision and its main objective is to find correspondences between features extracted from different natural images. When images are represented as graphs, image matching boils down to the problem of graph matching which has been studied intensively in the past. In recent years, graph neural networks have shown great potential in the graph matching task, and have also been applied to image matching. In this paper, we propose a graph neural network for the problem of image matching. The proposed method first generates initial soft correspondences between keypoints using localized node embeddings and then iteratively refines the initial correspondences using a series of graph neural network layers. We evaluate our method on natural image datasets with keypoint annotations and show that, in comparison to a state-of-the-art model, our method speeds up inference times without sacrificing prediction accuracy.

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