AAAI 2021
Conference paper

Searching for Machine Learning Pipelines Using a Context-Free Grammar

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AutoML automatically selects, composes and parameterizes machine learning algorithms into a workflow or pipeline of operations that aims at maximizing performance on a given dataset. Although current methods for AutoML achieved impressive results they mostly concentrate on optimizing fixed linear workflows. In this paper, we take a different approach and focus on generating and optimizing pipelines of complex directed acyclic graph shapes which in turn may lead to discovering hidden features and thus boost performance considerably. We explore the power of heuristic search and context-free grammars to search and optimize these kinds of pipelines. Experiments on various benchmark datasets show that our approach is highly competitive and often outperforms existing AutoML systems.