Type-Driven Automated Learning with Lale

Martin Hirzel, Kiran Kate, Avraham Shinnar, Subhrajit Roy, Parikshit Ram

Machine-learning automation tools, ranging from humble grid-search to hyperopt, auto-sklearn, and TPOT, help explore large search spaces of possible pipelines. Unfortunately, each of these tools has a different syntax for specifying its search space, leading to lack of portability, missed relevant points, and spurious points that are inconsistent with error checks and documentation of the searchable base components. This paper proposes using types (such as enum, float, or dictionary) both for checking the correctness of, and for automatically searching over, hyperparameters and pipeline configurations. Using types for both of these purposes guarantees consistency. We present Lale, an embedded language that resembles scikit learn but provides better automation, correctness checks, and portability. Lale extends the reach of existing automation tools across data modalities (tables, text, images, time-series) and programming languages (Python, Java, R). Thus, data scientists can leverage automation while remaining in control of their work.

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