Get our free extension to see links to code for papers anywhere online!Free extension: code links for papers anywhere!Free add-on: See code for papers anywhere!

Yingqiang Ge, Mostafa Rahmani, Athirai Irissappane, Jose Sepulveda, James Caverlee, Fei Wang

In real-world scenarios, most platforms collect both large-scale, naturally noisy implicit feedback and small-scale yet highly relevant explicit feedback. Due to the issue of data sparsity, implicit feedback is often the default choice for training recommender systems (RS), however, such data could be very noisy due to the randomness and diversity of user behaviors. For instance, a large portion of clicks may not reflect true user preferences and many purchases may result in negative reviews or returns. Fortunately, by utilizing the strengths of both types of feedback to compensate for the weaknesses of the other, we can mitigate the above issue at almost no cost. In this work, we propose an Automated Data Denoising framework, \textbf{\textit{AutoDenoise}}, for recommendation, which uses a small number of explicit data as validation set to guide the recommender training. Inspired by the generalized definition of curriculum learning (CL), AutoDenoise learns to automatically and dynamically assign the most appropriate (discrete or continuous) weights to each implicit data sample along the training process under the guidance of the validation performance. Specifically, we use a delicately designed controller network to generate the weights, combine the weights with the loss of each input data to train the recommender system, and optimize the controller with reinforcement learning to maximize the expected accuracy of the trained RS on the noise-free validation set. Thorough experiments indicate that AutoDenoise is able to boost the performance of the state-of-the-art recommendation algorithms on several public benchmark datasets.

Via

Mostafa Rahmani, Anoop Deoras, Laurent Callot

This paper presents a novel, closed-form, and data/computation efficient online anomaly detection algorithm for time-series data. The proposed method, dubbed RPE, is a window-based method and in sharp contrast to the existing window-based methods, it is robust to the presence of anomalies in its window and it can distinguish the anomalies in time-stamp level. RPE leverages the linear structure of the trajectory matrix of the time-series and employs a robust projection step which makes the algorithm able to handle the presence of multiple arbitrarily large anomalies in its window. A closed-form/non-iterative algorithm for the robust projection step is provided and it is proved that it can identify the corrupted time-stamps. RPE is a great candidate for the applications where a large training data is not available which is the common scenario in the area of time-series. An extensive set of numerical experiments show that RPE can outperform the existing approaches with a notable margin.

Via

Mostafa Rahmani

This paper focuses on the Matrix Factorization based Clustering (MFC) method which is one of the few closed form algorithms for the subspace clustering problem. Despite being simple, closed-form, and computation-efficient, MFC can outperform the other sophisticated subspace clustering methods in many challenging scenarios. We reveal the connection between MFC and the Innovation Pursuit (iPursuit) algorithm which was shown to be able to outperform the other spectral clustering based methods with a notable margin especially when the span of clusters are close. A novel theoretical study is presented which sheds light on the key performance factors of both algorithms (MFC/iPursuit) and it is shown that both algorithms can be robust to notable intersections between the span of clusters. Importantly, in contrast to the theoretical guarantees of other algorithms which emphasized on the distance between the subspaces as the key performance factor and without making the innovation assumption, it is shown that the performance of MFC/iPursuit mainly depends on the distance between the innovative components of the clusters.

Via

Mostafa Rahmani, Rasoul Shafipour, Ping Li

In contrast to image/text data whose order can be used to perform non-local feature aggregation in a straightforward way using the pooling layers, graphs lack the tensor representation and mostly the element-wise max/mean function is utilized to aggregate the locally extracted feature vectors. In this paper, we present a novel approach for global feature aggregation in Graph Neural Networks (GNNs) which utilizes a Latent Fixed Data Structure (LFDS) to aggregate the extracted feature vectors. The locally extracted feature vectors are sorted/distributed on the LFDS and a latent neural network (CNN/GNN) is utilized to perform feature aggregation on the LFDS. The proposed approach is used to design several novel global feature aggregation methods based on the choice of the LFDS. We introduce multiple LFDSs including loop, 3D tensor (image), sequence, data driven graphs and an algorithm which sorts/distributes the extracted local feature vectors on the LFDS. While the computational complexity of the proposed methods are linear with the order of input graphs, they achieve competitive or better results.

Via

Weiwei Li, Mostafa Rahmani, Ping Li

This paper studies the subspace clustering problem in which data points collected from high-dimensional ambient space lie in a union of linear subspaces. Subspace clustering becomes challenging when the dimension of intersection between subspaces is large and most of the self-representation based methods are sensitive to the intersection between the span of clusters. In sharp contrast to the self-representation based methods, a recently proposed clustering method termed Innovation Pursuit, computed a set of optimal directions (directions of innovation) to build the adjacency matrix. This paper focuses on the Innovation Pursuit Algorithm to shed light on its impressive performance when the subspaces are heavily intersected. It is shown that in contrast to most of the existing methods which require the subspaces to be sufficiently incoherent with each other, Innovation Pursuit only requires the innovative components of the subspaces to be sufficiently incoherent with each other. These new sufficient conditions allow the clusters to be strongly close to each other. Motivated by the presented theoretical analysis, a simple yet effective projection based technique is proposed which we show with both numerical and theoretical results that it can boost the performance of Innovation Pursuit.

Via

Mostafa Rahmani, Ping Li

The idea of Innovation Search, which was initially proposed for data clustering, was recently used for outlier detection. In the application of Innovation Search for outlier detection, the directions of innovation were utilized to measure the innovation of the data points. We study the Innovation Values computed by the Innovation Search algorithm under a quadratic cost function and it is proved that Innovation Values with the new cost function are equivalent to Leverage Scores. This interesting connection is utilized to establish several theoretical guarantees for a Leverage Score based robust PCA method and to design a new robust PCA method. The theoretical results include performance guarantees with different models for the distribution of outliers and the distribution of inliers. In addition, we demonstrate the robustness of the algorithms against the presence of noise. The numerical and theoretical studies indicate that while the presented approach is fast and closed-form, it can outperform most of the existing algorithms.

Via

Mostafa Rahmani, Ping Li

The idea of Innovation Search was proposed as a data clustering method in which the directions of innovation were utilized to compute the adjacency matrix and it was shown that Innovation Pursuit can notably outperform the self representation based subspace clustering methods. In this paper, we present a new discovery that the directions of innovation can be used to design a provable and strong robust (to outlier) PCA method. The proposed approach, dubbed iSearch, uses the direction search optimization problem to compute an optimal direction corresponding to each data point. iSearch utilizes the directions of innovation to measure the innovation of the data points and it identifies the outliers as the most innovative data points. Analytical performance guarantees are derived for the proposed robust PCA method under different models for the distribution of the outliers including randomly distributed outliers, clustered outliers, and linearly dependent outliers. In addition, we study the problem of outlier detection in a union of subspaces and it is shown that iSearch provably recovers the span of the inliers when the inliers lie in a union of subspaces. Moreover, we present theoretical studies which show that the proposed measure of innovation remains stable in the presence of noise and the performance of iSearch is robust to noisy data. In the challenging scenarios in which the outliers are close to each other or they are close to the span of the inliers, iSearch is shown to remarkably outperform most of the existing methods. The presented method shows that the directions of innovation are useful representation of the data which can be used to perform both data clustering and outlier detection.

Via

Mostafa Rahmani, Ping Li

The spatial convolution layer which is widely used in the Graph Neural Networks (GNNs) aggregates the feature vector of each node with the feature vectors of its neighboring nodes. The GNN is not aware of the locations of the nodes in the global structure of the graph and when the local structures corresponding to different nodes are similar to each other, the convolution layer maps all those nodes to similar or same feature vectors in the continuous feature space. Therefore, the GNN cannot distinguish two graphs if their difference is not in their local structures. In addition, when the nodes are not labeled/attributed the convolution layers can fail to distinguish even different local structures. In this paper, we propose an effective solution to address this problem of the GNNs. The proposed approach leverages a spatial representation of the graph which makes the neural network aware of the differences between the nodes and also their locations in the graph. The spatial representation which is equivalent to a point-cloud representation of the graph is obtained by a graph embedding method. Using the proposed approach, the local feature extractor of the GNN distinguishes similar local structures in different locations of the graph and the GNN infers the topological structure of the graph from the spatial distribution of the locally extracted feature vectors. Moreover, the spatial representation is utilized to simplify the graph down-sampling problem. A new graph pooling method is proposed and it is shown that the proposed pooling method achieves competitive or better results in comparison with the state-of-the-art methods.

Via

Mostafa Rahmani, Adel Karimian, Andre Beckus, George Atia

This paper focuses on the unsupervised clustering of large partially observed graphs. We propose a provable randomized framework in which a clustering algorithm is applied to a graphs adjacency matrix generated from a stochastic block model. A sub-matrix is constructed using random sampling, and the low rank component is found using a convex-optimization based matrix completion algorithm. The clusters are then identified based on this low rank component using a correlation based retrieval step. Additionally, a new random node sampling algorithm is presented which significantly improves upon the performance of the clustering algorithm with unbalanced data. Given a partially observed graph with adjacency matrix A \in R^{N \times N} , the proposed approach can reduce the computational complexity from O(N^2) to O(N).

Via