Machine Truth Serum

Sep 25, 2019 Blind Submission readers: everyone Show Bibtex
  • Keywords: Ensemble method, Classification, Machine Truth Serum, Minority, Machine Learning
  • TL;DR: This paper proposes two machine learning aided methods HMTS and DMTS to detect when the aggregated minority opinion should be taken as the final prediction instead of majority.
  • Abstract: Wisdom of the crowd revealed a striking fact that the majority answer from a crowd is often more accurate than any individual expert. We observed the same story in machine learning - ensemble methods leverage this idea to combine multiple learning algorithms to obtain better classification performance. Among many popular examples is the celebrated Random Forest, which applies the majority voting rule in aggregating different decision trees to make the final prediction. Nonetheless, these aggregation rules would fail when the majority is more likely to be wrong. In this paper, we extend the idea proposed in Bayesian Truth Serum that "a surprisingly more popular answer is more likely the true answer" to classification problems. The challenge for us is to define or detect when an answer should be considered as being "surprising". We present two machine learning aided methods which aim to reveal the truth when it is minority instead of majority who has the true answer. Our experiments over real-world datasets show that better classification performance can be obtained compared to always trusting the majority voting. Our proposed methods also outperform popular ensemble algorithms. Our approach can be generically applied as a subroutine in ensemble methods to replace majority voting rule.
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