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Title: Optimal Estimation of Sparse Topic Models
Topic models have become popular tools for dimension reduction and exploratory analysis of text data which consists in observed frequencies of a vocabulary of p words in n documents, stored in a p×n matrix. The main premise is that the mean of this data matrix can be factorized into a product of two non-negative matrices: a p×K word-topic matrix A and a K×n topic-document matrix W. This paper studies the estimation of A that is possibly element-wise sparse, and the number of topics K is unknown. In this under-explored context, we derive a new minimax lower bound for the estimation of such A and propose a new computationally efficient algorithm for its recovery. We derive a finite sample upper bound for our estimator, and show that it matches the minimax lower bound in many scenarios. Our estimate adapts to the unknown sparsity of A and our analysis is valid for any finite n, p, K and document lengths. Empirical results on both synthetic data and semi-synthetic data show that our proposed estimator is a strong competitor of the existing state-of-the-art algorithms for both non-sparse A and sparse A, and has superior performance is many scenarios of interest.  more » « less
Award ID(s):
Author(s) / Creator(s):
; ;
Dalalyan, Aynak
Date Published:
Journal Name:
Journal of machine learning research
Page Range / eLocation ID:
1 - 45
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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