**Accelerated Coordinate Descent (ACD)**

Accelerated coordinate descent is a widely popular optimization algorithm due to its efficiency on large-dimensional problems. It achieves state-of-the-art complexity on an important class of empirical risk minimization problems. In this paper we design and analyze an accelerated coordinate descent (ACD) method which in each iteration updates a random subset of coordinates according to an arbitrary but fixed probability law, which is a parameter of the method. If all coordinates are updated in each iteration, our method reduces to the classical accelerated gradient descent method AGD of Nesterov. If a single coordinate is updated in each iteration, and we pick probabilities proportional to the square roots of the coordinate-wise Lipschitz constants, our method reduces to the currently fastest coordinate descent method NUACDM of Allen-Zhu, Qu, Richt\'{a}rik and Yuan. While mini-batch variants of ACD are more popular and relevant in practice, there is no importance sampling for ACD that outperforms the standard uniform mini-batch sampling. Through insights enabled by our general analysis, we design new importance sampling for mini-batch ACD which significantly outperforms previous state-of-the-art minibatch ACD in practice. We prove a rate that is at most ${\cal O}(\sqrt{\tau})$ times worse than the rate of minibatch ACD with uniform sampling, but can be ${\cal O}(n/\tau)$ times better, where $\tau$ is the minibatch size. Since in modern supervised learning training systems it is standard practice to choose $\tau \ll n$, and often $\tau={\cal O}(1)$, our method can lead to dramatic speedups. Lastly, we obtain similar results for minibatch nonaccelerated CD as well, achieving improvements on previous best rates. … **CascadeML**

Multi-label classification is an approach which allows a datapoint to be labelled with more than one class at the same time. A common but trivial approach is to train individual binary classifiers per label, but the performance can be improved by considering associations within the labels. Like with any machine learning algorithm, hyperparameter tuning is important to train a good multi-label classifier model. The task of selecting the best hyperparameter settings for an algorithm is an optimisation problem. Very limited work has been done on automatic hyperparameter tuning and AutoML in the multi-label domain. This paper attempts to fill this gap by proposing a neural network algorithm, CascadeML, to train multi-label neural network based on cascade neural networks. This method requires minimal or no hyperparameter tuning and also considers pairwise label associations. The cascade algorithm grows the network architecture incrementally in a two phase process as it learns the weights using adaptive first order gradient algorithm, therefore omitting the requirement of preselecting the number of hidden layers, nodes and the learning rate. The method was tested on 10 multi-label datasets and compared with other multi-label classification algorithms. Results show that CascadeML performs very well without hyperparameter tuning. … **Uncertainty Autoencoder**

The goal of statistical compressive sensing is to efficiently acquire and reconstruct high-dimensional signals with much fewer measurements than the data dimensionality, given access to a finite set of training signals. Current approaches do not learn the acquisition and recovery procedures end-to-end and are typically hand-crafted for sparsity based priors. We propose Uncertainty Autoencoders, a framework that jointly learns the acquisition (i.e., encoding) and recovery (i.e., decoding) procedures while implicitly modeling domain structure. Our learning objective optimizes for a variational lower bound to the mutual information between the signal and the measurements. We show how our framework provides a unified treatment to several lines of research in dimensionality reduction, compressive sensing, and generative modeling. Empirically, we demonstrate improvements of 32% on average over competing approaches for statistical compressive sensing of high-dimensional datasets. … **Sobolev Training**

At the heart of deep learning we aim to use neural networks as function approximators – training them to produce outputs from inputs in emulation of a ground truth function or data creation process. In many cases we only have access to input-output pairs from the ground truth, however it is becoming more common to have access to derivatives of the target output with respect to the input – for example when the ground truth function is itself a neural network such as in network compression or distillation. Generally these target derivatives are not computed, or are ignored. This paper introduces Sobolev Training for neural networks, which is a method for incorporating these target derivatives in addition the to target values while training. By optimising neural networks to not only approximate the function’s outputs but also the function’s derivatives we encode additional information about the target function within the parameters of the neural network. Thereby we can improve the quality of our predictors, as well as the data-efficiency and generalization capabilities of our learned function approximation. We provide theoretical justifications for such an approach as well as examples of empirical evidence on three distinct domains: regression on classical optimisation datasets, distilling policies of an agent playing Atari, and on large-scale applications of synthetic gradients. In all three domains the use of Sobolev Training, employing target derivatives in addition to target values, results in models with higher accuracy and stronger generalisation. …

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