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PAC-Chernoff Bounds: Understanding Generalization in the Interpolation Regime

Andr\'es R. MasegosaLuis A. Ortega
Feb 2024
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摘要原文
In this paper, we present a distribution-dependent PAC-Chernoff bound that is perfectly tight for interpolators even under overparametrized model classes. This bound relies on basic principles of Large Deviation Theory and naturally provides a characterization of the smoothness of a model described as a simple real-valued function. Based on this distribution-dependent bound and the novel definition of smoothness, we propose an unifying theoretical explanation of why some interpolators generalize remarkably well while others not. And why a wide range of modern learning techniques (i.e., $\ell_2$-norm, distance-from-initialization, input-gradient and variance regularization together with data augmentation, invariant architectures, and overparameterization) are able to find them. The emergent conclusion is that all these methods provide complimentary procedures that bias the optimizer to smoother interpolators, which, according to this theoretical analysis, are the ones with better generalization error. One of the main insights of this study is that distribution-dependent bounds serve as a powerful tool better understand the complex dynamics behind the generalization capabilities of highly-overparameterized interpolators.
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