M. Schmidt, J. Gastinger, S. Nicolas, A. Schuelke: "HAMLET - A Learning Curve-Enabled Multi-Armed Bandit for Algorithm Selection", International Joint Conference on Neural Networks (IJCNN), 2020
Automated algorithm selection and hyperparameter tuning facilitates the application of machine learning. Traditional multi-armed bandit strategies look to the history of observed rewards to identify the most promising arms for optimizing expected total reward in the long run. When considering limited time budgets and computational resources, this backward view of rewards is inappropriate as the bandit should look into the future for anticipating the highest final reward at the end of a specified time budget. This work addresses that insight by introducing HAMLET, which extends the bandit approach with learning curve extrapolation and computation time-awareness for selecting among a set of machine learning algorithms. Results show that the HAMLET Variants 1-3 exhibit equal or better performance than other bandit-based algorithm selection strategies in experiments with recorded hyperparameter tuning traces for the majority of considered time budgets. The best performing HAMLET Variant 3 combines learning curve extrapolation with the well-known upper confidence bound exploration bonus. That variant performs better than all non-HAMLET policies with statistical significance at the 95% level for 1,485 runs.
M. Schmidt, S. Safarani, J. Gastinger, T. Jacobs, S. Nicolas, A. Schuelke: "On the Performance of Differential Evolution for Hyperparameter Tuning", International Joint Conference on Neural Networks (IJCNN), 2019
Automated hyperparameter tuning aspires to facilitate the application of machine learning for non-experts. In the literature, different optimization approaches are applied for that purpose. This paper investigates the performance of Differential Evolution for tuning hyperparameters of supervised learning algorithms for classification tasks. This empirical study involves a range of different machine learning algorithms and datasets with various characteristics to compare the performance of Differential Evolution with Sequential Model-based Algorithm Configuration (SMAC), a reference Bayesian Optimization approach. The results indicate that Differential Evolution outperforms SMAC for most datasets when tuning a given machine learning algorithm - particularly when breaking ties in a first-to-report fashion. Only for the tightest of computational budgets SMAC performs better. On small datasets, Differential Evolution outperforms SMAC by 19% (37% after tie-breaking). In a second experiment across a range of representative datasets taken from the literature, Differential Evolution scores 15% (23% after tie-breaking) more wins than SMAC.
Presented at: International Joint Conference on Neural Networks 2019
Paper available at: https://arxiv.org/abs/1904.06960