Accuracy at the Top

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 25 (NIPS 2012)

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Stephen Boyd, Corinna Cortes, Mehryar Mohri, Ana Radovanovic


We introduce a new notion of classification accuracy based on the top $\tau$-quantile values of a scoring function, a relevant criterion in a number of problems arising for search engines. We define an algorithm optimizing a convex surrogate of the corresponding loss, and show how its solution can be obtained by solving several convex optimization problems. We also present margin-based guarantees for this algorithm based on the $\tau$-quantile of the functions in the hypothesis set. Finally, we report the results of several experiments evaluating the performance of our algorithm. In a comparison in a bipartite setting with several algorithms seeking high precision at the top, our algorithm achieves a better performance in precision at the top.