A Transductive Bound for the Voted Classifier with an Application to Semi-supervised Learning

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 21 (NIPS 2008)

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Massih R. Amini, Nicolas Usunier, Fran├žois Laviolette


In this paper we present two transductive bounds on the risk of the majority vote estimated over partially labeled training sets. Our first bound is tight when the additional unlabeled training data are used in the cases where the voted classifier makes its errors on low margin observations and where the errors of the associated Gibbs classifier can accurately be estimated. In semi-supervised learning, considering the margin as an indicator of confidence constitutes the working hypothesis of algorithms which search the decision boundary on low density regions. In this case, we propose a second bound on the joint probability that the voted classifier makes an error over an example having its margin over a fixed threshold. As an application we are interested on self-learning algorithms which assign iteratively pseudo-labels to unlabeled training examples having margin above a threshold obtained from this bound. Empirical results on different datasets show the effectiveness of our approach compared to the same algorithm and the TSVM in which the threshold is fixed manually.