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Putting the ``Learning" into Learning-Augmented Algorithms for Frequency Estimation

Elbert Du · Franklyn Wang · Michael Mitzenmacher


Keywords: [ Hardware and Systems ]

Abstract: In learning-augmented algorithms, algorithms are enhanced using information from a machine learning algorithm. In turn, this suggests that we should tailor our machine-learning approach for the target algorithm. We here consider this synergy in the context of the learned count-min sketch from (Hsu et al., 2019). Learning here is used to predict heavy hitters from a data stream, which are counted explicitly outside the sketch. We show that an approximately sufficient statistic for the performance of the underlying count-min sketch is given by the coverage of the predictor, or the normalized $L^1$ norm of keys that are filtered by the predictor to be explicitly counted. We show that machine learning models which are trained to optimize for coverage lead to large improvements in performance over prior approaches according to the average absolute frequency error. Our source code can be found at

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