Classifier Cascade for Minimizing Feature Evaluation Cost


Minmin Chen, Zhixiang Xu, Kilian Weinberger, Olivier Chapelle, Dor Kedem ;
Proceedings of the Fifteenth International Conference on Artificial Intelligence and Statistics, PMLR 22:218-226, 2012.


Machine learning algorithms are increasingly used in large-scale industrial settings. Here, the operational cost during test-time has to be taken into account when an algorithm is designed. This operational cost is affected by the average running time and the computation time required for feature extraction. When a diverse set of features is used, the latter can vary drastically. In this paper we propose an algorithm that constructs a cascade of classifiers that explicitly trades-off operational cost and classifier accuracy while accounting for on-demand feature extraction costs. Different from previous work, our algorithm re-optimizes trained classifiers and allows expensive features to be scheduled at any stage within the cascade to minimize overall cost. Experiments on actual web-search ranking data sets demonstrate that our framework leads to drastic test-time improvements.

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