Hashing Hyperplane Queries to Near Points with Applications to Large-Scale Active Learning

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 23 (NIPS 2010)

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Prateek Jain, Sudheendra Vijayanarasimhan, Kristen Grauman


We consider the problem of retrieving the database points nearest to a given {\em hyperplane} query without exhaustively scanning the database. We propose two hashing-based solutions. Our first approach maps the data to two-bit binary keys that are locality-sensitive for the angle between the hyperplane normal and a database point. Our second approach embeds the data into a vector space where the Euclidean norm reflects the desired distance between the original points and hyperplane query. Both use hashing to retrieve near points in sub-linear time. Our first method's preprocessing stage is more efficient, while the second has stronger accuracy guarantees. We apply both to pool-based active learning: taking the current hyperplane classifier as a query, our algorithm identifies those points (approximately) satisfying the well-known minimal distance-to-hyperplane selection criterion. We empirically demonstrate our methods' tradeoffs, and show that they make it practical to perform active selection with millions of unlabeled points.