Discriminative Learning for Label Sequences via Boosting

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 15 (NIPS 2002)

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Yasemin Altun, Thomas Hofmann, Mark Johnson


This paper investigates a boosting approach to discriminative learning of label sequences based on a sequence rank loss function. The proposed method combines many of the advantages of boost(cid:173) ing schemes with the efficiency of dynamic programming methods and is attractive both, conceptually and computationally. In addi(cid:173) tion, we also discuss alternative approaches based on the Hamming loss for label sequences. The sequence boosting algorithm offers an interesting alternative to methods based on HMMs and the more recently proposed Conditional Random Fields. Applications areas for the presented technique range from natural language processing and information extraction to computational biology. We include experiments on named entity recognition and part-of-speech tag(cid:173) ging which demonstrate the validity and competitiveness of our approach.