Re: [R] box-constrained

From: Gustave Lefou <gustave5000_at_gmail.com>
Date: Thu, 06 Mar 2008 11:26:27 +0100

Thank you very much, that is exactly what I wanted to know.

I will add the gradient.

Do you have any reference about : "the objective function is additive rather than multiplicative, it has better numerical conditioning" ? I am just being curious :)

Gustave

2008/3/5, Ravi Varadhan <rvaradhan_at_jhmi.edu>:
>
> Hi,
>
> Let me make the following points in response to your questions:
>
> 1. Your call to optim() with "L-BFGS-B" as the method is correct. Just
> make sure that your function "f" is defined as negative log-likelihood,
> since optim is by default a minimizer. The other option is to define
> log-likelihood as usual, but set control=list(fnscale=-1).
>
> 2. You can add derivative (or gradient to be more precise) by defining
> that
> function and then using the "gr" argument in optim. Specifying exact
> gradient almost always improves the convergence of the iterative schemes,
> especially for ill-conditioned problems (flat region around the local
> minima). So, if it is not too much trouble, and you are confident of your
> differentiation skills, you should do that. However, in most cases the
> approximate finite-difference gradient used by optim() should be good
> enough.
>
> 3. Regardless of whether it is easy to compute the exact gradient or not,
> it is generally a bad idea to maximize the likelihood that involves the
> product of a large number of very small numbers. It is almost always
> better
> to maximize the log-likelihood. Since the objective function is additive
> rather than multiplicative, it has better numerical conditioning.
>
> Ravi.
>
>
>
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
> -------
>
> Ravi Varadhan, Ph.D.
>
> Assistant Professor, The Center on Aging and Health
>
> Division of Geriatric Medicine and Gerontology
>
> Johns Hopkins University
>
> Ph: (410) 502-2619
>
> Fax: (410) 614-9625
>
> Email: rvaradhan_at_jhmi.edu
>
> Webpage: http://www.jhsph.edu/agingandhealth/People/Faculty/Varadhan.html
>
>
>
>
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
> --------
>
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: r-help-bounces_at_r-project.org [mailto:r-help-bounces_at_r-project.org]
> On
> Behalf Of Gustave Lefou
> Sent: Wednesday, March 05, 2008 1:34 PM
> To: r-help_at_r-project.org
> Subject: [R] box-constrained
>
> Hello everybody,
>
> I have a question about box-constrained optimization. I've done some
> research and I found that optim could do that. Are there other ways in R ?
>
> Is the following correct if I have a function f of two parameters
> belonging
> for example to [0,1] and [0,Infinity] ?
> optim(par=param, fn=f, method="L-BFGS-B", lower=c(0,0), upper=c(1,Inf))
>
> My other question is whether it is possible to add the derivatives of my
> function (like in nlm) and whether it is better to add them ?
>
> If there is no need to add the derivatives, then I guess I could wish to
> optimize the likelihood directly rather than to optimize the
> log-likelihood... Indeed one aspect of the log-likelihood is to make the
> derivatives tractable (in iid cases). Do you agree ?
>
> Thank you !
> Gustave
>
>
> [[alternative HTML version deleted]]
>
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>

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