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Logistic Regression with L1 Penalty

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This class implements L1 (Lasso) regularization on Logistic Regression using coordinate descent to achieve sparse solutions. It allows for both in-memory inputs and data that lives in a PySpark RDD. This implementation is meant to be used for large datasets. For small datasets, scikit-learn is sufficient.

Mathematical Formulation

This method is formulated as the maximization of the concave log likelihood function. We can write this as the optimization problem like so:

Max Eqn

where the probabilities are defined by the logistic function:

Prob Eqn

The ith index denotes a set of observations with the same x_i, but with m_i occurrences of this observation, and y_i trials that result in a "success." There are n observations. The objective is to find the optimal beta cofficients to minimize the negative log likelihood.

The technique that is utilized is described in section 3 of "Regularization Paths for Generalized Linear Models via Coordinate Descent".

For an explanation of how this implementation solves the non-differentiable objective function from the L1 penalty term, refer to Chapter 13 of Machine Learning: A Probabilistic Perspective (Murphy, 2012).


Clone repository and install

$ python install

Usage and Example

The primary input will be a matrix. If you do not need to use PySpark, then pass the data in as a numpy array. If pyspark=True, then the input must be an RDD.

The matrix format for both cases should include observations, a weight for each row, and the number of successes. It will look something like this, where each variable listed is an array:

[ x1, x2, ... , num_occurrences_of_row, num_successes ]

If each row is unweighted, then the second to last column (num_occurrences_of_row) will be ones. The last column (num_successes) will then be zeros or ones.

The fit method will automatically insert an intercept term and return coefficients that includes this bias.

The PySpark RDD

For improved performance, the PySpark RDD's partitions should each hold a single NumPy array.

The fit method will check to see if your partition is a list of a NumPy array. If it is not, it will be converted into this format.


Without PySpark

import numpy as np
from logistic_regression_l1 import LogisticRegressionL1

# x_1, x_2, m, y are predefined arrays
data = np.array([x_1, x_2, m, y]).T
lambda_grid = np.exp(-1*np.linspace(1,17,200))

logit_no_pyspark = LogisticRegressionL1(), lambda_grid, .00000001, False)

# x_3, x_4 are arrays of new observations
new_observations = np.array([x_3, x_4]).T
logit_no_pyspark.predict(new_observations, False)

With PySpark

import numpy as np
from logistic_regression_l1 import LogisticRegressionL1

# sparkrdd is predefined RDD with same format as non-PySpark case
lambda_grid = np.exp(-1*np.linspace(1,17,200))

logit_pyspark = LogisticRegressionL1(), lambda_grid, .00000001, True)

# sparkrdd_new_obs is the RDD holding the observations to predict
logit_pyspark.predict(sparkrdd_new_obs, True)

Regularization Path

If you want to use the benefit of the Lasso regularization, then the output of the fit method will return the entire regularization path, each row corresponding to the lambda parameter that you choose.

The lambda grid will control how you iterate through the L1 penalty/constraint. Note that the step sizes should be small, as this algorithm utilizes a second-order Taylor approximation.

If you plot the coefficients against the sum of coefficients in each iteration, the result will be something like this: Logistic Path

The most important features will appear in the most constrained iterations.