# Category Archives: Optimization

## Revisiting Nesterov’s Acceleration

Nesterov’s accelerated gradient descent (AGD) is hard to understand. Since Nesterov’s 1983 paper people have tried to explain “why” acceleration is possible, with the hope that the answer would go beyond the mysterious (but beautiful) algebraic manipulations of the original … Continue reading

## Deep stuff about deep learning?

Unless you live a secluded life without internet (in which case you’re not reading those lines), odds are that you have heard and read about deep learning (such as in this 2012 article in the New York Times, or the … Continue reading

## The entropic barrier: a simple and optimal universal self-concordant barrier

Ronen Eldan and I have just uploaded our new paper on the arxiv (it should appear tomorrow, for the moment you can see it here). The abstract reads as follows: We prove that the Fenchel dual of the log-Laplace transform … Continue reading

## Komlos conjecture, Gaussian correlation conjecture, and a bit of machine learning

Today I would like to talk (somewhat indirectly) about a beautiful COLT 2014 paper by Nick Harvey and Samira Samadi. The problem studied in this paper goes as follows: imagine that you have a bunch of data points in with a certain … Continue reading

## Theory of Convex Optimization for Machine Learning

I am extremely happy to release the first draft of my monograph based on the lecture notes published last year on this blog. (Comments on the draft are welcome!) The abstract reads as follows: This monograph presents the main mathematical … Continue reading

## Nesterov’s Accelerated Gradient Descent for Smooth and Strongly Convex Optimization

About a year ago I described Nesterov’s Accelerated Gradient Descent in the context of smooth optimization. As I mentioned previously this has been by far the most popular post on this blog. Today I have decided to revisit this post to give a … Continue reading

## Guest post by Dan Garber and Elad Hazan: The Conditional Gradient Method, A Linear Convergent Algorithm – Part II/II

The goal of this post is to develop a Conditional Gradient method that converges exponentially fast while basically solving only a linear minimization problem over the domain on each iteration. To this end we consider the following relaxation of the … Continue reading

## Guest post by Dan Garber and Elad Hazan: The Conditional Gradient Method, A Linear Convergent Algorithm – Part I/II

In a previous post Sebastien presented and analysed the conditional gradient method for minimizing a smooth convex function over a compact and convex domain . The update step of the method is as follows, where , . The … Continue reading

## The aftermath of ORF523 and the final

It has been two weeks since my last post on the blog, and I have to admit that it felt really good to take a break from my 2-posts-per-week regime of the previous months. Now that ORF523 is over the … Continue reading

## ORF523: Optimization with bandit feedback

In this last lecture we consider the case where one can only access the function with a noisy -order oracle (see this lecture for a definition). This assumption models the ‘physical reality’ of many practical problems (on the contrary to … Continue reading