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Johnson-Lindenstrauss and RIP September 10, 2010

Posted by Sarah in Uncategorized.
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Via Nuit Blanche, I found a paper relating the Johnson-Lindenstrauss Theorem to the Restricted Isometry Property (RIP.) It caught my eye because the authors are Rachel Ward and Felix Krahmer, whom I actually know! I met Rachel when I was an undergrad and she was a grad student. We taught high school girls together and climbed mountains in Park City, where I also met Felix.

So what’s this all about?
The Johnson-Lindenstrauss Lemma says that any p points in n-dimensional Euclidean space can be embedded in O(\epsilon^{-2} \log(p)) dimensions, without distorting the distance between any two points by a distance of more than a factor between (1 -\epsilon) and (1 + \epsilon). So it gives us almost-isometric embeddings of high-dimensional data in lower dimensions.

The Restricted Isometry Property, familiar to students of compressed sensing, is the property of a matrix \Phi that

(1-\delta) ||x||_2^2 \le ||\Phi x||_2^2 \le (1 + \delta) ||x||_2^2
for all sufficiently sparse vectors x.
The relevance of this property is that these are the matrices for which \ell_1-minimization actually yields the sparsest vector — that is, RIP is a sufficient condition for basis pursuit to work.

Now these two concepts involve equations that look a lot alike… and it turns out that they actually are related. The authors show that RIP matrices produce Johnson-Lindenstrauss embeddings. In particular, they produce improved Johnson-Lindenstrauss bounds for special types of matrices with known RIP bounds.

The proof relies upon Rademacher sequences (uniformly distributed in [-1, 1]), which I don’t know a lot about, but should probably learn.

[N.B.: corrections from the original post come from Felix.]



1. Igor Carron - September 13, 2010


You said “RIP is a necessary condition for basis pursuit to work”. As far as I know, RIP is really a sufficient condition for basis pursuit.



2. Sarah - September 15, 2010

Oops, sorry!

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