BasisFormer: Attention-based Time Series Forecasting with Learnable and Interpretable Basis

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 36 (NeurIPS 2023) Main Conference Track

Bibtex Paper Supplemental


Zelin Ni, Hang Yu, Shizhan Liu, Jianguo Li, Weiyao Lin


Bases have become an integral part of modern deep learning-based models for time series forecasting due to their ability to act as feature extractors or future references. To be effective, a basis must be tailored to the specific set of time series data and exhibit distinct correlation with each time series within the set. However, current state-of-the-art methods are limited in their ability to satisfy both of these requirements simultaneously. To address this challenge, we propose BasisFormer, an end-to-end time series forecasting architecture that leverages learnable and interpretable bases. This architecture comprises three components: First, we acquire bases through adaptive self-supervised learning, which treats the historical and future sections of the time series as two distinct views and employs contrastive learning. Next, we design a Coef module that calculates the similarity coefficients between the time series and bases in the historical view via bidirectional cross-attention. Finally, we present a Forecast module that selects and consolidates the bases in the future view based on the similarity coefficients, resulting in accurate future predictions. Through extensive experiments on six datasets, we demonstrate that BasisFormer outperforms previous state-of-the-art methods by 11.04% and 15.78% respectively for univariate and multivariate forecasting tasks. Code isavailable at: