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February 28 2013 5 28 /02 /February /2013 19:05

By Alexandra Carpentier and Odalric-Ambrym Maillard.
In Proceedings of the 25th conference on advances in Neural Information Processing Systems, NIPS '12, 2012.


In the setting of active learning for the multi-armed bandit, where the goal of a learner is to estimate with equal precision the mean of a finite number of arms, recent results show that it is possible to derive strategies based on finite-time confidence bounds that are competitive with the best possible strategy. We here consider an extension of this problem to the case when the arms are the cells of a finite partition P of a continuous sampling space X \subset \Real^d. Our goal is now to build a piecewise constant approximation of a noisy function (where each piece is one region of P and P is fixed beforehand) in order to maintain the local quadratic error of approximation on each cell equally low. Although this extension is not trivial, we show that a simple algorithm based on upper confidence bounds can be proved to be adaptive to the function itself in a near-optimal way, when |P| is chosen to be of minimax-optimal order on the class of \alpha-Hölder functions.


You can dowload the paper from the NIPS website (here) or from the HAL online open depository* (here).


  title = {Online allocation and homogeneous partitioning for piecewise constant mean-approximation.},
  author = {Carpentier, Alexandra and Maillard, Odalric-Ambrym},

  booktitle = {Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 25},
  editor = {P. Bartlett and F.C.N. Pereira and C.J.C. Burges and L. Bottou and K.Q. Weinberger},
  pages = {1970-1978},
  year = {2012}




* The HAL open-access online archive system seeks to make research results available to the widest audience, independently of the major publisher, and cooperates with other large international archives like arXiv.

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