Encyclopedia of Machine Learning

2010 Edition
| Editors: Claude Sammut, Geoffrey I. Webb

Generalization Bounds

  • Mark Reid
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-0-387-30164-8_328



In the theory of statistical machine learning, a generalization bound – or, more precisely, a generalization error bound – is a statement about the predictive performance of a learning algorithm or class of algorithms. Here, a learning algorithm is viewed as a procedure that takes some finite training sample of labeled instances as input and returns a hypothesis regarding the labels of all instances, including those which may not have appeared in the training sample. Assuming labeled instances are drawn from some fixed distribution, the quality of a hypothesis can be measured in terms of its risk – its incompatibility with the distribution. The performance of a learning algorithm can then be expressed in terms of the expected risk of its hypotheses given randomly generated training samples.

Under these assumptions, a generalization bound is a theorem, which holds for any distribution and states that, with high probability, applying...

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mark Reid
    • 1
  1. 1.The Australian National UniversityCanberraAustralia