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2010


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A Robust Bayesian Two-Sample Test for Detecting Intervals of Differential Gene Expression in Microarray Time Series

Stegle, O., Denby, KJ., Cooke, EJ., Wild, DL., Ghahramani, Z., Borgwardt, KM.

Journal of Computational Biology, 17(3):355-367, May 2010 (article)

Abstract
Understanding the regulatory mechanisms that are responsible for an organism‘s response to environmental change is an important issue in molecular biology. A first and important step towards this goal is to detect genes whose expression levels are affected by altered external conditions. A range of methods to test for differential gene expression, both in static as well as in time-course experiments, have been proposed. While these tests answer the question whether a gene is differentially expressed, they do not explicitly address the question when a gene is differentially expressed, although this information may provide insights into the course and causal structure of regulatory programs. In this article, we propose a two-sample test for identifying intervals of differential gene expression in microarray time series. Our approach is based on Gaussian process regression, can deal with arbitrary numbers of replicates, and is robust with respect to outliers. We apply our algorithm to study the response of Arabidopsis thaliana genes to an infection by a fungal pathogen using a microarray time series dataset covering 30,336 gene probes at 24 observed time points. In classification experiments, our test compares favorably with existing methods and provides additional insights into time-dependent differential expression.

ei

Web DOI [BibTex]

2010


Web DOI [BibTex]


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Statistical Tests for Detecting Differential RNA-Transcript Expression from Read Counts

Stegle, O., Drewe, P., Bohnert, R., Borgwardt, K., Rätsch, G.

Nature Precedings, 2010, pages: 1-11, May 2010 (article)

Abstract
As a fruit of the current revolution in sequencing technology, transcriptomes can now be analyzed at an unprecedented level of detail. These advances have been exploited for detecting differential expressed genes across biological samples and for quantifying the abundances of various RNA transcripts within one gene. However, explicit strategies for detecting the hidden differential abundances of RNA transcripts in biological samples have not been defined. In this work, we present two novel statistical tests to address this issue: a "gene structure sensitive" Poisson test for detecting differential expression when the transcript structure of the gene is known, and a kernel-based test called Maximum Mean Discrepancy when it is unknown. We analyzed the proposed approaches on simulated read data for two artificial samples as well as on factual reads generated by the Illumina Genome Analyzer for two C. elegans samples. Our analysis shows that the Poisson test identifies genes with differential transcript expression considerably better that previously proposed RNA transcript quantification approaches for this task. The MMD test is able to detect a large fraction (75%) of such differential cases without the knowledge of the annotated transcripts. It is therefore well-suited to analyze RNA-Seq experiments when the genome annotations are incomplete or not available, where other approaches have to fail.

ei

PDF DOI [BibTex]

PDF DOI [BibTex]


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Using Model Knowledge for Learning Inverse Dynamics

Nguyen-Tuong, D., Peters, J.

In Proceedings of the 2010 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA 2010), pages: 2677-2682, IEEE, Piscataway, NJ, USA, 2010 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), May 2010 (inproceedings)

Abstract
In recent years, learning models from data has become an increasingly interesting tool for robotics, as it allows straightforward and accurate model approximation. However, in most robot learning approaches, the model is learned from scratch disregarding all prior knowledge about the system. For many complex robot systems, available prior knowledge from advanced physics-based modeling techniques can entail valuable information for model learning that may result in faster learning speed, higher accuracy and better generalization. In this paper, we investigate how parametric physical models (e.g., obtained from rigid body dynamics) can be used to improve the learning performance, and, especially, how semiparametric regression methods can be applied in this context. We present two possible semiparametric regression approaches, where the knowledge of the physical model can either become part of the mean function or of the kernel in a nonparametric Gaussian process regression. We compare the learning performance o f these methods first on sampled data and, subsequently, apply the obtained inverse dynamics models in tracking control on a real Barrett WAM. The results show that the semiparametric models learned with rigid body dynamics as prior outperform the standard rigid body dynamics models on real data while generalizing better for unknown parts of the state space.

ei

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]


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Generalized Proximity and Projection with Norms and Mixed-norms

Sra, S.

(192), Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Tübingen, Germany, May 2010 (techreport)

Abstract
We discuss generalized proximity operators (GPO) and their associated generalized projection problems. On inputs of size n, we show how to efficiently apply GPOs and generalized projections for separable norms and distance-like functions to accuracy e in O(n log(1/e)) time. We also derive projection algorithms that run theoretically in O(n log n log(1/e)) time but can for suitable parameter ranges empirically outperform the O(n log(1/e)) projection method. The proximity and projection tasks are either separable, and solved directly, or are reduced to a single root-finding step. We highlight that as a byproduct, our analysis also yields an O(n log(1/e)) (weakly linear-time) procedure for Euclidean projections onto the l1;1-norm ball; previously only an O(n log n) method was known. We provide empirical evaluation to illustrate the performance of our methods, noting that for the l1;1-norm projection, our implementation is more than two orders of magnitude faster than the previously known method.

ei

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Coherent Inference on Optimal Play in Game Trees

Hennig, P., Stern, D., Graepel, T.

In JMLR Workshop and Conference Proceedings Volume 9: AISTATS 2010, pages: 326-333, (Editors: Teh, Y.W. , M. Titterington ), JMLR, Cambridge, MA, USA, Thirteenth International Conference on Artificial Intelligence and Statistics, May 2010 (inproceedings)

Abstract
Round-based games are an instance of discrete planning problems. Some of the best contemporary game tree search algorithms use random roll-outs as data. Relying on a good policy, they learn on-policy values by propagating information upwards in the tree, but not between sibling nodes. Here, we present a generative model and a corresponding approximate message passing scheme for inference on the optimal, off-policy value of nodes in smooth AND/OR trees, given random roll-outs. The crucial insight is that the distribution of values in game trees is not completely arbitrary. We define a generative model of the on-policy values using a latent score for each state, representing the value under the random roll-out policy. Inference on the values under the optimal policy separates into an inductive, pre-data step and a deductive, post-data part. Both can be solved approximately with Expectation Propagation, allowing off-policy value inference for any node in the (exponentially big) tree in linear time.

ei pn

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Incremental Sparsification for Real-time Online Model Learning

Nguyen-Tuong, D., Peters, J.

In JMLR Workshop and Conference Proceedings Volume 9: AISTATS 2010, pages: 557-564, (Editors: Teh, Y.W. , M. Titterington), JMLR, Cambridge, MA, USA, Thirteenth International Conference on Artificial Intelligence and Statistics, May 2010 (inproceedings)

Abstract
Online model learning in real-time is required by many applications such as in robot tracking control. It poses a difficult problem, as fast and incremental online regression with large data sets is the essential component which cannot be achieved by straightforward usage of off-the-shelf machine learning methods (such as Gaussian process regression or support vector regression). In this paper, we propose a framework for online, incremental sparsification with a fixed budget designed for large scale real-time model learning. The proposed approach combines a sparsification method based on an independence measure with a large scale database. In combination with an incremental learning approach such as sequential support vector regression, we obtain a regression method which is applicable in real-time online learning. It exhibits competitive learning accuracy when compared with standard regression techniques. Implementation on a real robot emphasizes the applicability of the proposed approach in real-time online model learning for real world systems.

ei

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Parameter-exploring policy gradients

Sehnke, F., Osendorfer, C., Rückstiess, T., Graves, A., Peters, J., Schmidhuber, J.

Neural Networks, 21(4):551-559, May 2010 (article)

Abstract
We present a model-free reinforcement learning method for partially observable Markov decision problems. Our method estimates a likelihood gradient by sampling directly in parameter space, which leads to lower variance gradient estimates than obtained by regular policy gradient methods. We show that for several complex control tasks, including robust standing with a humanoid robot, this method outperforms well-known algorithms from the fields of standard policy gradients, finite difference methods and population based heuristics. We also show that the improvement is largest when the parameter samples are drawn symmetrically. Lastly we analyse the importance of the individual components of our method by incrementally incorporating them into the other algorithms, and measuring the gain in performance after each step.

ei

PDF PDF DOI [BibTex]

PDF PDF DOI [BibTex]


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Multitask Learning for Brain-Computer Interfaces

Alamgir, M., Grosse-Wentrup, M., Altun, Y.

In JMLR Workshop and Conference Proceedings Volume 9: AISTATS 2010, pages: 17-24, (Editors: Teh, Y.W. , M. Titterington), JMLR, Cambridge, MA, USA, Thirteenth International Conference on Artificial Intelligence and Statistics , May 2010 (inproceedings)

Abstract
Brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) are limited in their applicability in everyday settings by the current necessity to record subjectspecific calibration data prior to actual use of the BCI for communication. In this paper, we utilize the framework of multitask learning to construct a BCI that can be used without any subject-specific calibration process. We discuss how this out-of-the-box BCI can be further improved in a computationally efficient manner as subject-specific data becomes available. The feasibility of the approach is demonstrated on two sets of experimental EEG data recorded during a standard two-class motor imagery paradigm from a total of 19 healthy subjects. Specifically, we show that satisfactory classification results can be achieved with zero training data, and combining prior recordings with subjectspecific calibration data substantially outperforms using subject-specific data only. Our results further show that transfer between recordings under slightly different experimental setups is feasible.

ei

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Identifying Cause and Effect on Discrete Data using Additive Noise Models

Peters, J., Janzing, D., Schölkopf, B.

In JMLR Workshop and Conference Proceedings Volume 9: AISTATS 2010, pages: 597-604, (Editors: YW Teh and M Titterington), JMLR, Cambridge, MA, USA, 13th International Conference on Artificial Intelligence and Statistics, May 2010 (inproceedings)

Abstract
Inferring the causal structure of a set of random variables from a finite sample of the joint distribution is an important problem in science. Recently, methods using additive noise models have been suggested to approach the case of continuous variables. In many situations, however, the variables of interest are discrete or even have only finitely many states. In this work we extend the notion of additive noise models to these cases. Whenever the joint distribution P(X;Y ) admits such a model in one direction, e.g. Y = f(X) + N; N ? X, it does not admit the reversed model X = g(Y ) + ~N ; ~N ? Y as long as the model is chosen in a generic way. Based on these deliberations we propose an efficient new algorithm that is able to distinguish between cause and effect for a finite sample of discrete variables. We show that this algorithm works both on synthetic and real data sets.

ei

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Temporal Kernel CCA and its Application in Multimodal Neuronal Data Analysis

Biessmann, F., Meinecke, F., Gretton, A., Rauch, A., Rainer, G., Logothetis, N., Müller, K.

Machine Learning, 79(1-2):5-27, May 2010 (article)

Abstract
Data recorded from multiple sources sometimes exhibit non-instantaneous couplings. For simple data sets, cross-correlograms may reveal the coupling dynamics. But when dealing with high-dimensional multivariate data there is no such measure as the cross-correlogram. We propose a simple algorithm based on Kernel Canonical Correlation Analysis (kCCA) that computes a multivariate temporal filter which links one data modality to another one. The filters can be used to compute a multivariate extension of the cross-correlogram, the canonical correlogram, between data sources that have different dimensionalities and temporal resolutions. The canonical correlogram reflects the coupling dynamics between the two sources. The temporal filter reveals which features in the data give rise to these couplings and when they do so. We present results from simulations and neuroscientific experiments showing that tkCCA yields easily interpretable temporal filters and correlograms. In the experiments, we simultaneously performed electrode recordings and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in primary visual cortex of the non-human primate. While electrode recordings reflect brain activity directly, fMRI provides only an indirect view of neural activity via the Blood Oxygen Level Dependent (BOLD) response. Thus it is crucial for our understanding and the interpretation of fMRI signals in general to relate them to direct measures of neural activity acquired with electrodes. The results computed by tkCCA confirm recent models of the hemodynamic response to neural activity and allow for a more detailed analysis of neurovascular coupling dynamics.

ei

PDF PDF DOI [BibTex]

PDF PDF DOI [BibTex]


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Estimating predictive stimulus features from psychophysical data: The decision image technique applied to human faces

Macke, J., Wichmann, F.

Journal of Vision, 10(5:22):1-24, May 2010 (article)

Abstract
One major challenge in the sensory sciences is to identify the stimulus features on which sensory systems base their computations, and which are predictive of a behavioral decision: they are a prerequisite for computational models of perception. We describe a technique (decision images) for extracting predictive stimulus features using logistic regression. A decision image not only defines a region of interest within a stimulus but is a quantitative template which defines a direction in stimulus space. Decision images thus enable the development of predictive models, as well as the generation of optimized stimuli for subsequent psychophysical investigations. Here we describe our method and apply it to data from a human face classification experiment. We show that decision images are able to predict human responses not only in terms of overall percent correct but also in terms of the probabilities with which individual faces are (mis-) classified by individual observers. We show that the most predictive dimension for gender categorization is neither aligned with the axis defined by the two class-means, nor with the first principal component of all faces-two hypotheses frequently entertained in the literature. Our method can be applied to a wide range of binary classification tasks in vision or other psychophysical contexts.

ei

Web DOI [BibTex]


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Semi-supervised Learning via Generalized Maximum Entropy

Erkan, A., Altun, Y.

In JMLR Workshop and Conference Proceedings Volume 9: AISTATS 2010, pages: 209-216, (Editors: Teh, Y.W. , M. Titterington), JMLR, Cambridge, MA, USA, Thirteenth International Conference on Artificial Intelligence and Statistics , May 2010 (inproceedings)

Abstract
Various supervised inference methods can be analyzed as convex duals of the generalized maximum entropy (MaxEnt) framework. Generalized MaxEnt aims to find a distribution that maximizes an entropy function while respecting prior information represented as potential functions in miscellaneous forms of constraints and/or penalties. We extend this framework to semi-supervised learning by incorporating unlabeled data via modifications to these potential functions reflecting structural assumptions on the data geometry. The proposed approach leads to a family of discriminative semi-supervised algorithms, that are convex, scalable, inherently multi-class, easy to implement, and that can be kernelized naturally. Experimental evaluation of special cases shows the competitiveness of our methodology.

ei

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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A New Algorithm for Improving the Resolution of Cryo-EM Density Maps

Hirsch, M., Schölkopf, B., Habeck, M.

In Research in Computational Molecular Biology, Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics, Vol. 6044 , pages: 174-188, (Editors: B Berger), Springer, Berlin, Germany, 14th International Conference on Research in Computational Molecular Biology (RECOMB), May 2010 (inproceedings)

Abstract
Cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) plays an increasingly prominent role in structure elucidation of macromolecular assemblies. Advances in experimental instrumentation and computational power have spawned numerous cryo-EM studies of large biomolecular complexes resulting in the reconstruction of three-dimensional density maps at intermediate and low resolution. In this resolution range, identification and interpretation of structural elements and modeling of biomolecular structure with atomic detail becomes problematic. In this paper, we present a novel algorithm that enhances the resolution of intermediate- and low-resolution density maps. Our underlying assumption is to model the low-resolution density map as a blurred and possibly noise-corrupted version of an unknown high-resolution map that we seek to recover by deconvolution. By exploiting the nonnegativity of both the high-resolution map and blur kernel we derive multiplicative updates reminiscent of those used in nonnegative matrix factorization. Our framework allows for easy incorporation of additional prior knowledge such as smoothness and sparseness, on both the sharpened density map and the blur kernel. A probabilistic formulation enables us to derive updates for the hyperparameters, therefore our approach has no parameter that needs adjustment. We apply the algorithm to simulated three-dimensional electron microscopic data. We show that our method provides better resolved density maps when compared with B-factor sharpening, especially in the presence of noise. Moreover, our method can use additional information provided by homologous structures, which helps to improve the resolution even further.

ei

Web DOI [BibTex]

Web DOI [BibTex]


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Movement Templates for Learning of Hitting and Batting

Kober, J., Mülling, K., Krömer, O., Lampert, C., Schölkopf, B., Peters, J.

In Proceedings of the 2010 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA 2010), pages: 853-858, IEEE, Piscataway, NJ, USA, 2010 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), May 2010 (inproceedings)

ei

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]


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Animal detection in natural scenes: Critical features revisited

Wichmann, F., Drewes, J., Rosas, P., Gegenfurtner, K.

Journal of Vision, 10(4):1-27, April 2010 (article)

Abstract
S. J. Thorpe, D. Fize, and C. Marlot (1996) showed how rapidly observers can detect animals in images of natural scenes, but it is still unclear which image features support this rapid detection. A. B. Torralba and A. Oliva (2003) suggested that a simple image statistic based on the power spectrum allows the absence or presence of objects in natural scenes to be predicted. We tested whether human observers make use of power spectral differences between image categories when detecting animals in natural scenes. In Experiments 1 and 2 we found performance to be essentially independent of the power spectrum. Computational analysis revealed that the ease of classification correlates with the proposed spectral cue without being caused by it. This result is consistent with the hypothesis that in commercial stock photo databases a majority of animal images are pre-segmented from the background by the photographers and this pre-segmentation causes the power spectral differences between image categories and may, furthermore, help rapid animal detection. Data from a third experiment are consistent with this hypothesis. Together, our results make it exceedingly unlikely that human observers make use of power spectral differences between animal- and no-animal images during rapid animal detection. In addition, our results point to potential confounds in the commercially available “natural image” databases whose statistics may be less natural than commonly presumed.

ei

Web DOI [BibTex]

Web DOI [BibTex]


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A generative model approach for decoding in the visual event-related potential-based brain-computer interface speller

Martens, SMM., Leiva, JM.

Journal of Neural Engineering, 7(2):1-10, April 2010 (article)

Abstract
There is a strong tendency towards discriminative approaches in brain-computer interface (BCI) research. We argue that generative model-based approaches are worth pursuing and propose a simple generative model for the visual ERP-based BCI speller which incorporates prior knowledge about the brain signals. We show that the proposed generative method needs less training data to reach a given letter prediction performance than the state of the art discriminative approaches.

ei

PDF PDF DOI [BibTex]

PDF PDF DOI [BibTex]


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Hilbert Space Embeddings and Metrics on Probability Measures

Sriperumbudur, B., Gretton, A., Fukumizu, K., Schölkopf, B., Lanckriet, G.

Journal of Machine Learning Research, 11, pages: 1517-1561, April 2010 (article)

ei

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Graph Kernels

Vishwanathan, SVN., Schraudolph, NN., Kondor, R., Borgwardt, KM.

Journal of Machine Learning Research, 11, pages: 1201-1242, April 2010 (article)

Abstract
We present a unified framework to study graph kernels, special cases of which include the random walk (G{\"a}rtner et al., 2003; Borgwardt et al., 2005) and marginalized (Kashima et al., 2003, 2004; Mahét al., 2004) graph kernels. Through reduction to a Sylvester equation we improve the time complexity of kernel computation between unlabeled graphs with n vertices from O(n6) to O(n3). We find a spectral decomposition approach even more efficient when computing entire kernel matrices. For labeled graphs we develop conjugate gradient and fixed-point methods that take O(dn3) time per iteration, where d is the size of the label set. By extending the necessary linear algebra to Reproducing Kernel Hilbert Spaces (RKHS) we obtain the same result for d-dimensional edge kernels, and O(n4) in the infinite-dimensional case; on sparse graphs these algorithms only take O(n2) time per iteration in all cases. Experiments on graphs from bioinformatics and other application domains show that these techniques can speed up computation of the kernel by an order of magnitude or more. We also show that certain rational kernels (Cortes et al., 2002, 2003, 2004) when specialized to graphs reduce to our random walk graph kernel. Finally, we relate our framework to R-convolution kernels (Haussler, 1999) and provide a kernel that is close to the optimal assignment kernel of kernel of Fr{\"o}hlich et al. (2006) yet provably positive semi-definite.

ei

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Solving large-scale nonnegative least squares using an adaptive non-monotonic method

Sra, S., Kim, D., Dhillon, I.

24th European Conference on Operational Research (EURO 2010), 24, pages: 223, April 2010 (poster)

Abstract
We present an efficient algorithm for large-scale non-negative least-squares (NNLS). We solve NNLS by extending the unconstrained quadratic optimization method of Barzilai and Borwein (BB) to handle nonnegativity constraints. Our approach is simple yet efficient. It differs from other constrained BB variants as: (i) it uses a specific subset of variables for computing BB steps; and (ii) it scales these steps adaptively to ensure convergence. We compare our method with both established convex solvers and specialized NNLS methods, and observe highly competitive empirical performance.

ei

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Gene function prediction from synthetic lethality networks via ranking on demand

Lippert, C., Ghahramani, Z., Borgwardt, KM.

Bioinformatics, 26(7):912-918, April 2010 (article)

Abstract
Motivation: Synthetic lethal interactions represent pairs of genes whose individual mutations are not lethal, while the double mutation of both genes does incur lethality. Several studies have shown a correlation between functional similarity of genes and their distances in networks based on synthetic lethal interactions. However, there is a lack of algorithms for predicting gene function from synthetic lethality interaction networks. Results: In this article, we present a novel technique called kernelROD for gene function prediction from synthetic lethal interaction networks based on kernel machines. We apply our novel algorithm to Gene Ontology functional annotation prediction in yeast. Our experiments show that our method leads to improved gene function prediction compared with state-of-the-art competitors and that combining genetic and congruence networks leads to a further improvement in prediction accuracy.

ei

Web DOI [BibTex]

Web DOI [BibTex]


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Sparse regression via a trust-region proximal method

Kim, D., Sra, S., Dhillon, I.

24th European Conference on Operational Research (EURO 2010), 24, pages: 278, April 2010 (poster)

Abstract
We present a method for sparse regression problems. Our method is based on the nonsmooth trust-region framework that minimizes a sum of smooth convex functions and a nonsmooth convex regularizer. By employing a separable quadratic approximation to the smooth part, the method enables the use of proximity operators, which in turn allow tackling the nonsmooth part efficiently. We illustrate our method by implementing it for three important sparse regression problems. In experiments with synthetic and real-world large-scale data, our method is seen to be competitive, robust, and scalable.

ei

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Machine-Learning Methods for Decoding Intentional Brain States

Hill, NJ.

Symposium "Non-Invasive Brain Computer Interfaces: Current Developments and Applications" (BIOMAG), March 2010 (talk)

Abstract
Brain-computer interfaces (BCI) work by making the user perform a specific mental task, such as imagining moving body parts or performing some other covert mental activity, or attending to a particular stimulus out of an array of options, in order to encode their intention into a measurable brain signal. Signal-processing and machine-learning techniques are then used to decode the measured signal to identify the encoded mental state and hence extract the user‘s initial intention. The high-noise high-dimensional nature of brain-signals make robust decoding techniques a necessity. Generally, the approach has been to use relatively simple feature extraction techniques, such as template matching and band-power estimation, coupled to simple linear classifiers. This has led to a prevailing view among applied BCI researchers that (sophisticated) machine-learning is irrelevant since “it doesn‘t matter what classifier you use once your features are extracted.” Using examples from our own MEG and EEG experiments, I‘ll demonstrate how machine-learning principles can be applied in order to improve BCI performance, if they are formulated in a domain-specific way. The result is a type of data-driven analysis that is more than “just” classification, and can be used to find better feature extractors.

ei

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Cooperative Cuts: Graph Cuts with Submodular Edge Weights

Jegelka, S., Bilmes, J.

(189), Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Tuebingen, Germany, March 2010 (techreport)

Abstract
We introduce a problem we call Cooperative cut, where the goal is to find a minimum-cost graph cut but where a submodular function is used to define the cost of a subsets of edges. That means, the cost of an edge that is added to the current cut set C depends on the edges in C. This generalization of the cost in the standard min-cut problem to a submodular cost function immediately makes the problem harder. Not only do we prove NP hardness even for nonnegative submodular costs, but also show a lower bound of Omega(|V|^(1/3)) on the approximation factor for the problem. On the positive side, we propose and compare four approximation algorithms with an overall approximation factor of min { |V|/2, |C*|, O( sqrt(|E|) log |V|), |P_max|}, where C* is the optimal solution, and P_max is the longest s, t path across the cut between given s, t. We also introduce additional heuristics for the problem which have attractive properties from the perspective of practical applications and implementations in that existing fast min-cut libraries may be used as subroutines. Both our approximation algorithms, and our heuristics, appear to do well in practice.

ei

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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A toolbox for predicting G-quadruplex formation and stability

Wong, HM., Stegle, O., Rodgers, S., Huppert, J.

Journal of Nucleic Acids, 2010(564946):1-6, March 2010 (article)

Abstract
G-quadruplexes are four stranded nucleic acid structures formed around a core of guanines, arranged in squares with mutual hydrogen bonding. Many of these structures are highly thermally stable, especially in the presence of monovalent cations, such as those found under physiological conditions. Understanding of their physiological roles is expanding rapidly, and they have been implicated in regulating gene transcription and translation among other functions. We have built a community-focused website to act as a repository for the information that is now being developed. At its core, this site has a detailed database (QuadDB) of predicted G-quadruplexes in the human and other genomes, together with the predictive algorithm used to identify them. We also provide a QuadPredict server, which predicts thermal stability and acts as a repository for experimental data from all researchers. There are also a number of other data sources with computational predictions. We anticipate that the wide availability of this information will be of use both to researchers already active in this exciting field and to those who wish to investigate a particular gene hypothesis.

ei

PDF DOI [BibTex]

PDF DOI [BibTex]


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PAC-Bayesian Analysis in Unsupervised Learning

Seldin, Y.

Foundations and New Trends of PAC Bayesian Learning Workshop, March 2010 (talk)

ei

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Quantitative Evaluation of MR-based Attenuation Correction for Positron Emission Tomography (PET)

Mantlik, F.

Biologische Kybernetik, Universität Mannheim, Germany, March 2010 (diplomathesis)

ei

[BibTex]

[BibTex]


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A Novel Protocol for Accuracy Assessment in Classification of Very High Resolution Images

Persello, C., Bruzzone, L.

IEEE Transactions on Geoscience and Remote Sensing, 48(3):1232-1244, March 2010 (article)

Abstract
This paper presents a novel protocol for the accuracy assessment of the thematic maps obtained by the classification of very high resolution images. As the thematic accuracy alone is not sufficient to adequately characterize the geometrical properties of high-resolution classification maps, we propose a protocol that is based on the analysis of two families of indices: 1) the traditional thematic accuracy indices and 2) a set of novel geometric indices that model different geometric properties of the objects recognized in the map. In this context, we present a set of indices that characterize five different types of geometric errors in the classification map: 1) oversegmentation; 2) undersegmentation; 3) edge location; 4) shape distortion; and 5) fragmentation. Moreover, we propose a new approach for tuning the free parameters of supervised classifiers on the basis of a multiobjective criterion function that aims at selecting the parameter values that result in the classification map that jointly optimize thematic and geometric error indices. Experimental results obtained on QuickBird images show the effectiveness of the proposed protocol in selecting classification maps characterized by a better tradeoff between thematic and geometric accuracies than standard procedures based only on thematic accuracy measures. In addition, results obtained with support vector machine classifiers confirm the effectiveness of the proposed multiobjective technique for the selection of free-parameter values for the classification algorithm.

ei

Web DOI [BibTex]

Web DOI [BibTex]


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PAC-Bayesian Bounds for Discrete Density Estimation and Co-clustering Analysis

Seldin, Y., Tishby, N.

Workshop "Foundations and New Trends of PAC Bayesian Learning", 2010, March 2010 (poster)

Abstract
We applied PAC-Bayesian framework to derive gen- eralization bounds for co-clustering1. The analysis yielded regularization terms that were absent in the preceding formulations of this task. The bounds sug- gested that co-clustering should optimize a trade-off between its empirical performance and the mutual in- formation that the cluster variables preserve on row and column indices. Proper regularization enabled us to achieve state-of-the-art results in prediction of the missing ratings in the MovieLens collaborative filtering dataset. In addition a PAC-Bayesian bound for discrete den- sity estimation was derived. We have shown that the PAC-Bayesian bound for classification is a spe- cial case of the PAC-Bayesian bound for discrete den- sity estimation. We further introduced combinatorial priors to PAC-Bayesian analysis. The combinatorial priors are more appropriate for discrete domains, as opposed to Gaussian priors, the latter of which are suitable for continuous domains. It was shown that combinatorial priors lead to regularization terms in the form of mutual information.

ei

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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On the Entropy Production of Time Series with Unidirectional Linearity

Janzing, D.

Journal of Statistical Physics, 138(4-5):767-779, March 2010 (article)

Abstract
There are non-Gaussian time series that admit a causal linear autoregressive moving average (ARMA) model when regressing the future on the past, but not when regressing the past on the future. The reason is that, in the latter case, the regression residuals are not statistically independent of the regressor. In previous work, we have experimentally verified that many empirical time series indeed show such a time inversion asymmetry. For various physical systems, it is known that time-inversion asymmetries are linked to the thermodynamic entropy production in non-equilibrium states. Here we argue that unidirectional linearity is also accompanied by entropy generation. To this end, we study the dynamical evolution of a physical toy system with linear coupling to an infinite environment and show that the linearity of the dynamics is inherited by the forward-time conditional probabilities, but not by the backward-time conditionals. The reason is that the environment permanently provides particles that are in a product state before they interact with the system, but show statistical dependence afterwards. From a coarse-grained perspective, the interaction thus generates entropy. We quantitatively relate the strength of the non-linearity of the backward process to the minimal amount of entropy generation. The paper thus shows that unidirectional linearity is an indirect implication of the thermodynamic arrow of time, given that the joint dynamics of the system and its environment is linear.

ei

PDF DOI [BibTex]

PDF DOI [BibTex]


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Experiments with Motor Primitives to learn Table Tennis

Peters, J., Mülling, K., Kober, J.

In Experimental Robotics, pages: 1-13, (Editors: Khatib, O. , V. Kumar, G. Sukhatme), Springer, Berlin, Germany, 12th International Symposium on Experimental Robotics (ISER), March 2010 (inproceedings)

ei

Web [BibTex]

Web [BibTex]


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Derivatives of Logarithmic Stationary Distributions for Policy Gradient Reinforcement Learning

Morimura, T., Uchibe, E., Yoshimoto, J., Peters, J., Doya, K.

Neural Computation, 22(2):342-376, February 2010 (article)

Abstract
Most conventional policy gradient reinforcement learning (PGRL) algorithms neglect (or do not explicitly make use of) a term in the average reward gradient with respect to the policy parameter. That term involves the derivative of the stationary state distribution that corresponds to the sensitivity of its distribution to changes in the policy parameter. Although the bias introduced by this omission can be reduced by setting the forgetting rate γ for the value functions close to 1, these algorithms do not permit γ to be set exactly at γ = 1. In this article, we propose a method for estimating the log stationary state distribution derivative (LSD) as a useful form of the derivative of the stationary state distribution through backward Markov chain formulation and a temporal difference learning framework. A new policy gradient (PG) framework with an LSD is also proposed, in which the average reward gradient can be estimated by setting //!-- MFG_und--//amp;#947; = 0, so it becomes unnecessary to learn the value functions. We also test the performance of the proposed algorithms using simple benchmark tasks and show that these can improve the performances of existing PG methods.

ei

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]


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Causality: Objectives and Assessment

Guyon, I., Janzing, D., Schölkopf, B.

In JMLR Workshop and Conference Proceedings: Volume 6 , pages: 1-42, (Editors: I Guyon and D Janzing and B Schölkopf), MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, USA, Causality: Objectives and Assessment (NIPS Workshop) , February 2010 (inproceedings)

Abstract
The NIPS 2008 workshop on causality provided a forum for researchers from different horizons to share their view on causal modeling and address the difficult question of assessing causal models. There has been a vivid debate on properly separating the notion of causality from particular models such as graphical models, which have been dominating the field in the past few years. Part of the workshop was dedicated to discussing the results of a challenge, which offered a wide variety of applications of causal modeling. We have regrouped in these proceedings the best papers presented. Most lectures were videotaped or recorded. All information regarding the challenge and the lectures are found at http://www.clopinet.com/isabelle/Projects/NIPS2008/. This introduction provides a synthesis of the findings and a gentle introduction to causality topics, which are the object of active research.

ei

Web [BibTex]

Web [BibTex]


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Bayesian Online Multitask Learning of Gaussian Processes

Pillonetto, G., Dinuzzo, F., De Nicolao, G.

IEEE Transactions on Pattern Analysis and Machine Intelligence, 32(2):193-205, February 2010 (article)

Abstract
Standard single-task kernel methods have recently been extended to the case of multitask learning in the context of regularization theory. There are experimental results, especially in biomedicine, showing the benefit of the multitask approach compared to the single-task one. However, a possible drawback is computational complexity. For instance, when regularization networks are used, complexity scales as the cube of the overall number of training data, which may be large when several tasks are involved. The aim of this paper is to derive an efficient computational scheme for an important class of multitask kernels. More precisely, a quadratic loss is assumed and each task consists of the sum of a common term and a task-specific one. Within a Bayesian setting, a recursive online algorithm is obtained, which updates both estimates and confidence intervals as new data become available. The algorithm is tested on two simulated problems and a real data set relative to xenobiotics administration in human patients.

ei

DOI [BibTex]

DOI [BibTex]


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JMLR Workshop and Conference Proceedings: Volume 6

Guyon, I., Janzing, D., Schölkopf, B.

pages: 288, MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, USA, Causality: Objectives and Assessment (NIPS Workshop) , February 2010 (proceedings)

ei

Web [BibTex]

Web [BibTex]


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Learning Motor Primitives for Robotics

Kober, J., Peters, J.

EVENT Lab: Reinforcement Learning in Robotics and Virtual Reality, January 2010 (talk)

Abstract
The acquisition and self-improvement of novel motor skills is among the most important problems in robotics. Motor primitives offer one of the most promising frameworks for the application of machine learning techniques in this context. Employing the Dynamic Systems Motor primitives originally introduced by Ijspeert et al. (2003), appropriate learning algorithms for a concerted approach of both imitation and reinforcement learning are presented. Using these algorithms new motor skills, i.e., Ball-in-a-Cup, Ball-Paddling and Dart-Throwing, are learned.

ei

[BibTex]

[BibTex]


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The semigroup approach to transport processes in networks

Dorn, B., Fijavz, M., Nagel, R., Radl, A.

Physica D: Nonlinear Phenomena, 239(15):1416-1421, January 2010 (article)

Abstract
We explain how operator semigroups can be used to study transport processes in networks. This method is applied to a linear Boltzmann equation on a finite as well as on an infinite network and yields well-posedness and information on the long term behavior of the solutions to the presented problems.

ei

Web DOI [BibTex]

Web DOI [BibTex]


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Learning Continuous Grasp Affordances by Sensorimotor Exploration

Detry, R., Baseski, E., Popovic, M., Touati, Y., Krüger, N., Kroemer, O., Peters, J., Piater, J.

In From Motor Learning to Interaction Learning in Robots, pages: 451-465, Studies in Computational Intelligence ; 264, (Editors: Sigaud, O. and Peters, J.), Springer, Berlin, Germany, January 2010 (inbook)

Abstract
We develop means of learning and representing object grasp affordances probabilistically. By grasp affordance, we refer to an entity that is able to assess whether a given relative object-gripper configuration will yield a stable grasp. These affordances are represented with grasp densities, continuous probability density functions defined on the space of 3D positions and orientations. Grasp densities are registered with a visual model of the object they characterize. They are exploited by aligning them to a target object using visual pose estimation. Grasp densities are refined through experience: A robot “plays” with an object by executing grasps drawn randomly for the object’s grasp density. The robot then uses the outcomes of these grasps to build a richer density through an importance sampling mechanism. Initial grasp densities, called hypothesis densities, are bootstrapped from grasps collected using a motion capture system, or from grasps generated from the visual model of the object. Refined densities, called empirical densities, represent affordances that have been confirmed through physical experience. The applicability of our method is demonstrated by producing empirical densities for two object with a real robot and its 3-finger hand. Hypothesis densities are created from visual cues and human demonstration.

ei

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]


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Optimization of k-Space Trajectories for Compressed Sensing by Bayesian Experimental Design

Seeger, M., Nickisch, H., Pohmann, R., Schölkopf, B.

Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, 63(1):116-126, January 2010 (article)

Abstract
The optimization of k-space sampling for nonlinear sparse MRI reconstruction is phrased as a Bayesian experimental design problem. Bayesian inference is approximated by a novel relaxation to standard signal processing primitives, resulting in an efficient optimization algorithm for Cartesian and spiral trajectories. On clinical resolution brain image data from a Siemens 3T scanner, automatically optimized trajectories lead to significantly improved images, compared to standard low-pass, equispaced, or variable density randomized designs. Insights into the nonlinear design optimization problem for MRI are given.

ei

Web DOI [BibTex]

Web DOI [BibTex]


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Imitation and Reinforcement Learning for Motor Primitives with Perceptual Coupling

Kober, J., Mohler, B., Peters, J.

In From Motor Learning to Interaction Learning in Robots, pages: 209-225, Studies in Computational Intelligence ; 264, (Editors: Sigaud, O. and Peters, J.), Springer, Berlin, Germany, January 2010 (inbook)

Abstract
Traditional motor primitive approaches deal largely with open-loop policies which can only deal with small perturbations. In this paper, we present a new type of motor primitive policies which serve as closed-loop policies together with an appropriate learning algorithm. Our new motor primitives are an augmented version version of the dynamical system-based motor primitives [Ijspeert et al(2002)Ijspeert, Nakanishi, and Schaal] that incorporates perceptual coupling to external variables. We show that these motor primitives can perform complex tasks such as Ball-in-a-Cup or Kendama task even with large variances in the initial conditions where a skilled human player would be challenged. We initialize the open-loop policies by imitation learning and the perceptual coupling with a handcrafted solution. We first improve the open-loop policies and subsequently the perceptual coupling using a novel reinforcement learning method which is particularly well-suited for dynamical system-based motor primitives.

ei

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]


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From Motor Learning to Interaction Learning in Robots

Sigaud, O., Peters, J.

In From Motor Learning to Interaction Learning in Robots, pages: 1-12, Studies in Computational Intelligence ; 264, (Editors: Sigaud, O. and Peters, J.), Springer, Berlin, Germany, January 2010 (inbook)

Abstract
The number of advanced robot systems has been increasing in recent years yielding a large variety of versatile designs with many degrees of freedom. These robots have the potential of being applicable in uncertain tasks outside wellstructured industrial settings. However, the complexity of both systems and tasks is often beyond the reach of classical robot programming methods. As a result, a more autonomous solution for robot task acquisition is needed where robots adaptively adjust their behaviour to the encountered situations and required tasks. Learning approaches pose one of the most appealing ways to achieve this goal. However, while learning approaches are of high importance for robotics, we cannot simply use off-the-shelf methods from the machine learning community as these usually do not scale into the domains of robotics due to excessive computational cost as well as a lack of scalability. Instead, domain appropriate approaches are needed. In this book, we focus on several core domains of robot learning. For accurate task execution, we need motor learning capabilities. For fast learning of the motor tasks, imitation learning offers the most promising approach. Self improvement requires reinforcement learning approaches that scale into the domain of complex robots. Finally, for efficient interaction of humans with robot systems, we will need a form of interaction learning. This chapter provides a general introduction to these issues and briefly presents the contributions of the subsequent chapters to the corresponding research topics.

ei

Web DOI [BibTex]

Web DOI [BibTex]


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From Motor Learning to Interaction Learning in Robots

Sigaud, O., Peters, J.

pages: 538, Studies in Computational Intelligence ; 264, (Editors: O Sigaud, J Peters), Springer, Berlin, Germany, January 2010 (book)

Abstract
From an engineering standpoint, the increasing complexity of robotic systems and the increasing demand for more autonomously learning robots, has become essential. This book is largely based on the successful workshop "From motor to interaction learning in robots" held at the IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robot Systems. The major aim of the book is to give students interested the topics described above a chance to get started faster and researchers a helpful compandium.

ei

Web DOI [BibTex]

Web DOI [BibTex]


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Real-Time Local GP Model Learning

Nguyen-Tuong, D., Seeger, M., Peters, J.

In From Motor Learning to Interaction Learning in Robots, 264, pages: 193-207, Studies in Computational Intelligence, (Editors: Sigaud, O. and Peters, J.), Springer, Berlin, Germany, January 2010 (inbook)

Abstract
For many applications in robotics, accurate dynamics models are essential. However, in some applications, e.g., in model-based tracking control, precise dynamics models cannot be obtained analytically for sufficiently complex robot systems. In such cases, machine learning offers a promising alternative for approximating the robot dynamics using measured data. However, standard regression methods such as Gaussian process regression (GPR) suffer from high computational complexity which prevents their usage for large numbers of samples or online learning to date. In this paper, we propose an approximation to the standard GPR using local Gaussian processes models inspired by [Vijayakumar et al(2005)Vijayakumar, D’Souza, and Schaal, Snelson and Ghahramani(2007)]. Due to reduced computational cost, local Gaussian processes (LGP) can be applied for larger sample-sizes and online learning. Comparisons with other nonparametric regressions, e.g., standard GPR, support vector regression (SVR) and locally weighted proje ction regression (LWPR), show that LGP has high approximation accuracy while being sufficiently fast for real-time online learning.

ei

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]

PDF Web DOI [BibTex]


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Finding Gene-Gene Interactions using Support Vector Machines

Rakitsch, B.

Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen, Germany, 2010 (diplomathesis)

ei

[BibTex]

[BibTex]


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Accurate Prediction of Protein-Coding Genes with Discriminative Learning Techniques

Schweikert, G.

Technische Universität Berlin, Germany, 2010 (phdthesis)

ei

[BibTex]


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Leveraging Sequence Classification by Taxonomy-based Multitask Learning

Widmer, C., Leiva, J., Altun, Y., Rätsch, G.

In Research in Computational Molecular Biology, LNCS, Vol. 6044, pages: 522-534, (Editors: B Berger), Springer, Berlin, Germany, 14th Annual International Conference, RECOMB, 2010 (inproceedings)

ei

DOI [BibTex]

DOI [BibTex]


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Machine Learning Methods for Automatic Image Colorization

Charpiat, G., Bezrukov, I., Hofmann, M., Altun, Y., Schölkopf, B.

In Computational Photography: Methods and Applications, pages: 395-418, Digital Imaging and Computer Vision, (Editors: Lukac, R.), CRC Press, Boca Raton, FL, USA, 2010 (inbook)

Abstract
We aim to color greyscale images automatically, without any manual intervention. The color proposition could then be interactively corrected by user-provided color landmarks if necessary. Automatic colorization is nontrivial since there is usually no one-to-one correspondence between color and local texture. The contribution of our framework is that we deal directly with multimodality and estimate, for each pixel of the image to be colored, the probability distribution of all possible colors, instead of choosing the most probable color at the local level. We also predict the expected variation of color at each pixel, thus defining a non-uniform spatial coherency criterion. We then use graph cuts to maximize the probability of the whole colored image at the global level. We work in the L-a-b color space in order to approximate the human perception of distances between colors, and we use machine learning tools to extract as much information as possible from a dataset of colored examples. The resulting algorithm is fast, designed to be more robust to texture noise, and is above all able to deal with ambiguity, in contrary to previous approaches.

ei

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Probabilistic latent variable models for distinguishing between cause and effect

Mooij, J., Stegle, O., Janzing, D., Zhang, K., Schölkopf, B.

In Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 23, pages: 1687-1695, (Editors: J Lafferty and CKI Williams and J Shawe-Taylor and RS Zemel and A Culotta), Curran, Red Hook, NY, USA, 24th Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS), 2010 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We propose a novel method for inferring whether X causes Y or vice versa from joint observations of X and Y. The basic idea is to model the observed data using probabilistic latent variable models, which incorporate the effects of unobserved noise. To this end, we consider the hypothetical effect variable to be a function of the hypothetical cause variable and an independent noise term (not necessarily additive). An important novel aspect of our work is that we do not restrict the model class, but instead put general non-parametric priors on this function and on the distribution of the cause. The causal direction can then be inferred by using standard Bayesian model selection. We evaluate our approach on synthetic data and real-world data and report encouraging results.

ei

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Structural and Relational Data Mining for Systems Biology Applications

Georgii, E.

Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen, Germany , 2010 (phdthesis)

ei

Web [BibTex]

Web [BibTex]


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JigPheno: Semantic Feature Extraction in biological images

Karaletsos, T., Stegle, O., Winn, J., Borgwardt, K.

In NIPS, Workshop on Machine Learning in Computational Biology, 2010 (inproceedings)

ei

[BibTex]

[BibTex]