Ranking via Robust Binary Classification

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 27 (NIPS 2014)

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Hyokun Yun, Parameswaran Raman, S. Vishwanathan


We propose RoBiRank, a ranking algorithm that is motivated by observing a close connection between evaluation metrics for learning to rank and loss functions for robust classification. The algorithm shows a very competitive performance on standard benchmark datasets against other representative algorithms in the literature. Further, in large scale problems where explicit feature vectors and scores are not given, our algorithm can be efficiently parallelized across a large number of machines; for a task that requires 386,133 x 49,824,519 pairwise interactions between items to be ranked, our algorithm finds solutions that are of dramatically higher quality than that can be found by a state-of-the-art competitor algorithm, given the same amount of wall-clock time for computation.