David Stern, Ralf Herbrich, Thore Graepel, Horst Samulowitz, Luca Pulina, and Armando Tacchella
We consider the task of assigning experts from a portfolio of specialists in order to solve a set of tasks. We apply a Bayesian model which combines collaborative filtering with a feature-based description of tasks and experts to yield a general framework for managing a portfolio of experts. The model learns an embedding of tasks and problems into a latent space in which affinity is measured by the inner product. The model can be trained incrementally and can track non-stationary data, tracking potentially changing expert and task characteristics. The approach allows us to use a principled decision theoretic framework for expert selection, allowing the user to choose a utility function that best suits their objectives. The model component for taking into account the performance feedback data is pluggable, allowing flexibility. We apply the model to manage a portfolio of algorithms to solve hard combinatorial problems. This is a well studied area and we demonstrate a large improvement on the state of the art in one domain (constraint solving) and in a second domain (combinatorial auctions) created a portfolio that performed significantly better than any single algorithm.
In Proceedings of the Twenty-Fourth AAAI Conference on Artificial Intelligence AAAI-10 (to appear)