Learning Probability Measures with respect to Optimal Transport Metrics

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

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Guillermo Canas, Lorenzo Rosasco


We study the problem of estimating, in the sense of optimal transport metrics, a measure which is assumed supported on a manifold embedded in a Hilbert space. By establishing a precise connection between optimal transport metrics, optimal quantization, and learning theory, we derive new probabilistic bounds for the performance of a classic algorithm in unsupervised learning (k-means), when used to produce a probability measure derived from the data. In the course of the analysis, we arrive at new lower bounds, as well as probabilistic bounds on the convergence rate of the empirical law of large numbers, which, unlike existing bounds, are applicable to a wide class of measures.