Nonlinear Feature Selection with the Potential Support Vector Machine

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We describe the “Potential Support Vector Machine” (P-SVM) which is a new filter method for feature selection. The idea of the P-SVM feature selection is to exchange the role of features and data points in order to construct “support features”. The “support features” are the selected features. The P-SVM uses a novel objective function and novel constraints — one constraint for each feature. As with standard SVMs, the objective function represents a complexity or capacity measure whereas the constraints enforce low empirical error. In this contribution we extend the P-SVM in two directions. First, we introduce a parameter which controls the redundancy among the selected features. Secondly, we propose a nonlinear version of the P-SVM feature selection which is based on neural network techniques. Finally, the linear and nonlinear P-SVM feature selection approach is demonstrated on toy data sets and on data sets from the NIPS 2003 feature selection challenge.