Convergence rates of sub-sampled Newton methods

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 28 (NIPS 2015)

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Murat A. Erdogdu, Andrea Montanari


We consider the problem of minimizing a sum of $n$ functions via projected iterations onto a convex parameter set $\C \subset \reals^p$, where $n\gg p\gg 1$. In this regime, algorithms which utilize sub-sampling techniques are known to be effective.In this paper, we use sub-sampling techniques together with low-rank approximation to design a new randomized batch algorithm which possesses comparable convergence rate to Newton's method, yet has much smaller per-iteration cost. The proposed algorithm is robust in terms of starting point and step size, and enjoys a composite convergence rate, namely, quadratic convergence at start and linear convergence when the iterate is close to the minimizer. We develop its theoretical analysis which also allows us to select near-optimal algorithm parameters. Our theoretical results can be used to obtain convergence rates of previously proposed sub-sampling based algorithms as well. We demonstrate how our results apply to well-known machine learning problems.Lastly, we evaluate the performance of our algorithm on several datasets under various scenarios.