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Semi-supervised learning has attracted a significant amount of attention in pattern recognition and machine learning. Most previous studies have focused on designing special algorithms to effectively exploit the unlabeled data in conjunction with labeled data. Our goal is to improve the classification accuracy of any given supervised learning algorithm by using the available unlabeled examples. We call this as the Semi-supervised improvement problem, to distinguish the proposed approach from the existing approaches. We design a metasemi-supervised learning algorithm that wraps around the underlying supervised algorithm and improves its performance using unlabeled data. This problem is particularly important when we need to train a supervised learning algorithm with a limited number of labeled examples and a multitude of unlabeled examples. We present a boosting framework for semi-supervised learning, termed as SemiBoost. The key advantages of the proposed semi-supervised learning approach are: 1) performance improvement of any supervised learning algorithm with a multitude of unlabeled data, 2) efficient computation by the iterative boosting algorithm, and 3) exploiting both manifold and cluster assumption in training classification models. An empirical study on 16 different data sets and text categorization demonstrates that the proposed framework improves the performance of several commonly used supervised learning algorithms, given a large number of unlabeled examples. We also show that the performance of the proposed algorithm, SemiBoost, is comparable to the state-of-the-art semi-supervised learning algorithms.
Pattern Analysis and Machine Intelligence, IEEE Transactions on (Volume:31 , Issue: 11 )
Date of Publication: Nov. 2009