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Provably Correct Algorithms for Matrix Column Subset Selection with Selectively Sampled Data

Yining Wang, Aarti Singh; 18(156):1−42, 2018.


We consider the problem of matrix column subset selection, which selects a subset of columns from an input matrix such that the input can be well approximated by the span of the selected columns. Column subset selection has been applied to numerous real-world data applications such as population genetics summarization, electronic circuits testing and recommendation systems. In many applications the complete data matrix is unavailable and one needs to select representative columns by inspecting only a small portion of the input matrix. In this paper we propose the first provably correct column subset selection algorithms for partially observed data matrices. Our proposed algorithms exhibit different merits and limitations in terms of statistical accuracy, computational efficiency, sample complexity and sampling schemes, which provides a nice exploration of the tradeoff between these desired properties for column subset selection. The proposed methods employ the idea of feedback driven sampling and are inspired by several sampling schemes previously introduced for low-rank matrix approximation tasks (Drineas et al., 2008; Frieze et al., 2004; Deshpande and Vempala, 2006; Krishnamurthy and Singh, 2014). Our analysis shows that, under the assumption that the input data matrix has incoherent rows but possibly coherent columns, all algorithms provably converge to the best low-rank approximation of the original data as number of selected columns increases. Furthermore, two of the proposed algorithms enjoy a relative error bound, which is preferred for column subset selection and matrix approximation purposes. We also demonstrate through both theoretical and empirical analysis the power of feedback driven sampling compared to uniform random sampling on input matrices with highly correlated columns.

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