Classifying everyday activity through label propagation with sparse training data

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We solve the problem of activity verification in the context of sustainability. Activity verification is the process of proving the user assertions pertaining to a certain activity performed by the

We solve the problem of activity verification in the context of sustainability. Activity verification is the process of proving the user assertions pertaining to a certain activity performed by the user. Our motivation lies in incentivizing the user for engaging in sustainable activities like taking public transport or recycling. Such incentivization schemes require the system to verify the claim made by the user. The system verifies these claims by analyzing the supporting evidence captured by the user while performing the activity. The proliferation of portable smart-phones in the past few years has provided us with a ubiquitous and relatively cheap platform, having multiple sensors like accelerometer, gyroscope, microphone etc. to capture this evidence data in-situ. In this research, we investigate the supervised and semi-supervised learning techniques for activity verification. Both these techniques make use the data set constructed using the evidence submitted by the user. Supervised learning makes use of annotated evidence data to build a function to predict the class labels of the unlabeled data points. The evidence data captured can be either unimodal or multimodal in nature. We use the accelerometer data as evidence for transportation mode verification and image data as evidence for recycling verification. After training the system, we achieve maximum accuracy of 94% when classifying the transport mode and 81% when detecting recycle activity. In the case of recycle verification, we could improve the classification accuracy by asking the user for more evidence. We present some techniques to ask the user for the next best piece of evidence that maximizes the probability of classification. Using these techniques for detecting recycle activity, the accuracy increases to 93%. The major disadvantage of using supervised models is that it requires extensive annotated training data, which expensive to collect. Due to the limited training data, we look at the graph based inductive semi-supervised learning methods to propagate the labels among the unlabeled samples. In the semi-supervised approach, we represent each instance in the data set as a node in the graph. Since it is a complete graph, edges interconnect these nodes, with each edge having some weight representing the similarity between the points. We propagate the labels in this graph, based on the proximity of the data points to the labeled nodes. We estimate the performance of these algorithms by measuring how close the probability distribution of the data after label propagation is to the probability distribution of the ground truth data. Since labeling has a cost associated with it, in this thesis we propose two algorithms that help us in selecting minimum number of labeled points to propagate the labels accurately. Our proposed algorithm achieves a maximum of 73% increase in performance when compared to the baseline algorithm.