Many scientific domains, such as nanophotonic design, gene expression, and materials design, are limited by high costs of acquiring data. This data is often intrinsically low-dimensional, nonlinear, and benefits from dimensionality reduction. Autoencoders (AE) provide nonlinear dimensionality reduction but are typically ineffective for low data regimes. Principal Component Analysis (PCA) is data-efficient but limited to linear dimensionality reduction. We propose a technique that harnesses the benefits of both methods by using PCA to initialize an AE. The proposed approach outperforms both PCA and standard AEs in low-data regimes and is comparable to the best of either of the two in other scenarios.
Article ID: 2023L25
Publisher: Canadian Artificial Intelligence Association