FilterBoost: Regression and Classification on Large Datasets

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 20 (NIPS 2007)

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Joseph K. Bradley, Robert E. Schapire


We study boosting in the filtering setting, where the booster draws examples from an oracle instead of using a fixed training set and so may train efficiently on very large datasets. Our algorithm, which is based on a logistic regression technique proposed by Collins, Schapire, & Singer, requires fewer assumptions to achieve bounds equivalent to or better than previous work. Moreover, we give the first proof that the algorithm of Collins et al. is a strong PAC learner, albeit within the filtering setting. Our proofs demonstrate the algorithm’s strong theoretical proper- ties for both classification and conditional probability estimation, and we validate these results through extensive experiments. Empirically, our algorithm proves more robust to noise and overfitting than batch boosters in conditional probability estimation and proves competitive in classification.