Scalable Convolutional Dictionary Learning with Constrained Recurrent Sparse Auto-encoders

12 Jul 2018  ·  Bahareh Tolooshams, Sourav Dey, Demba Ba ·

Given a convolutional dictionary underlying a set of observed signals, can a carefully designed auto-encoder recover the dictionary in the presence of noise? We introduce an auto-encoder architecture, termed constrained recurrent sparse auto-encoder (CRsAE), that answers this question in the affirmative. Given an input signal and an approximate dictionary, the encoder finds a sparse approximation using FISTA. The decoder reconstructs the signal by applying the dictionary to the output of the encoder. The encoder and decoder in CRsAE parallel the sparse-coding and dictionary update steps in optimization-based alternating-minimization schemes for dictionary learning. As such, the parameters of the encoder and decoder are not independent, a constraint which we enforce for the first time. We derive the back-propagation algorithm for CRsAE. CRsAE is a framework for blind source separation that, only knowing the number of sources (dictionary elements), and assuming sparsely-many can overlap, is able to separate them. We demonstrate its utility in the context of spike sorting, a source separation problem in computational neuroscience. We demonstrate the ability of CRsAE to recover the underlying dictionary and characterize its sensitivity as a function of SNR.

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