Another of the new machine learning algorithms in Oracle 20c Database is called XGBoost. Most people will have come across this algorithm due to its recent popularity with winners of Kaggle competitions and other similar events.
XGBoost is an open source software library providing a gradient boosting framework in most of the commonly used data science, machine learning and software development languages. It has it’s origins back in 2014, but the first official academic publication on the algorithm was published in 2016 by Tianqi Chen and Carlos Guestrin, from the University of Washington.
The algorithm builds upon the previous work on Decision Trees, Bagging, Random Forest, Boosting and Gradient Boosting. The benefits of using these various approaches are well know, researched, developed and proven over many years. XGBoost can be used for the typical use cases of Classification including classification, regression and ranking problems. Check out the original research paper for more details of the inner workings of the algorithm.
Regular machine learning models, like Decision Trees, simply train a single model using a training data set, and only this model is used for predictions. Although a Decision Tree is very simple to create (and very very quick to do so) its predictive power may not be as good as most other algorithms, despite providing model explainability. To overcome this limitation ensemble approaches can be used to create multiple Decision Trees and combines these for predictive purposes. Bagging is an approach where the predictions from multiple DT models are combined using majority voting. Building upon the bagging approach Random Forest uses different subsets of features and subsets of the training data, combining these in different ways to create a collection of DT models and presented as one model to the user. Boosting takes a more iterative approach to refining the models by building sequential models with each subsequent model is focused on minimizing the errors of the previous model. Gradient Boosting uses gradient descent algorithm to minimize errors in subsequent models. Finally with XGBoost builds upon these previous steps enabling parallel processing, tree pruning, missing data treatment, regularization and better cache, memory and hardware optimization. It’s commonly referred to as gradient boosting on steroids.
The following three images illustrates the differences between Decision Trees, Random Forest and XGBoost.
The XGBoost algorithm in Oracle 20c has over 40 different parameter settings, and with most scenarios the default settings with be fine for most scenarios. Only after creating a baseline model with the details will you look to explore making changes to these. Some of the typical settings include:
- Booster = gbtree
- #rounds for boosting = 10
- max_depth = 6
- num_parallel_tree = 1
- eval_metric = Classification error rate or RMSE for regression
As with most of the Oracle in-database machine learning algorithms, the setup and defining the parameters is really simple. Here is an example of minimum of parameter settings that needs to be defined.
BEGIN -- delete previous setttings DELETE FROM banking_xgb_settings; INSERT INTO BANKING_XGB_SETTINGS (setting_name, setting_value) VALUES (dbms_data_mining.algo_name, dbms_data_mining.algo_xgboost); -- For 0/1 target, choose binary:logistic as the objective. INSERT INTO BANKING_XGB_SETTINGS (setting_name, setting_value) VALUES (dbms_data_mining.xgboost_objective, 'binary:logistic’); commit; END;
To create an XGBoost model run the following. BEGIN DBMS_DATA_MINING.CREATE_MODEL ( model_name => 'BANKING_XGB_MODEL', mining_function => dbms_data_mining.classification, data_table_name => 'BANKING_72K', case_id_column_name => 'ID', target_column_name => 'TARGET', settings_table_name => 'BANKING_XGB_SETTINGS'); END;
That’s all nice and simple, as it should be, and the new model can be called in the same manner as any of the other in-database machine learning models using functions like PREDICTION, PREDICTION_PROBABILITY, etc.
One of the interesting things I found when experimenting with XGBoost was the time it took to create the completed model. Using the default settings the following table gives the time taken, in seconds to create the model.
As you can see it is VERY quick even for large data sets and gives greater predictive accuracy.
Oracle 20c Database comes with some new in-database Machine Learning algorithms.
The short name for one of these is called MSET or Multivariate State Estimation Technique. That’s the simple short name. The more complete name is Multivariate State Estimation Technique – Sequential Probability Ratio Test. That is a long name, and the reason is it consists of two algorithms. The first part looks at creating a model of the training data, and the second part looks at how new data is statistical different to the training data.
What are the use cases for this algorithm? This algorithm can be used for anomaly detection.
Anomaly Detection, using algorithms, is able identifying unexpected items or events in data that differ to the norm. It can be easy to perform some simple calculations and graphics to examine and present data to see if there are any patterns in the data set. When the data sets grow it is difficult for humans to identify anomalies and we need the help of algorithms.
The images shown here are easy to analyze to spot the anomalies and it can be relatively easy to build some automated processing to identify these. Most of these solutions can be considered AI (Artificial Intelligence) solutions as they mimic human behaviors to identify the anomalies, and these example don’t need deep learning, neural networks or anything like that.
Other types of anomalies can be easily spotted in charts or graphics, such as the chart below.
There are many different algorithms available for anomaly detection, and the Oracle Database already has an algorithm called the One-Class Support Vector Machine. This is a variant of the main Support Vector Machine (SVD) algorithm, which maps or transforms the data, using a Kernel function, into space such that the data belonging to the class values are transformed by different amounts. This creates a Hyperplane between the mapped/transformed values and hopefully gives a large margin between the mapped/transformed points. This is what makes SVD very accurate, although it does have some scaling limitations. For a One-Class SVD, a similar process is followed. The aim is for anomalous data to be mapped differently to common or non-anomalous data, as shown in the following diagram.
Getting back to the MSET algorithm. Remember it is a 2-part algorithm abbreviated to MSET. The first part is a non-linear, nonparametric anomaly detection algorithm that calibrates the expected behavior of a system based on historical data from the normal sequence of monitored signals. Using data in time series format (DATE, Value) the training data set contains data consisting of “normal” behavior of the data. The algorithm creates a model to represent this “normal”/stationary data/behavior. The second part of the algorithm compares new or live data and calculates the differences between the estimated and actual signal values (residuals). It uses Sequential Probability Ratio Test (SPRT) calculations to determine whether any of the signals have become degraded. As you can imagine the creation of the training data set is vital and may consist of many iterations before determining the optimal training data set to use.
MSET has its origins in computer hardware failures monitoring. Sun Microsystems have been were using it back in the late 1990’s-early 2000’s to monitor and detect for component failures in their servers. Since then MSET has been widely used in power generation plants, airplanes, space travel, Disney uses it for equipment failures, and in more recent times has been extensively used in IOT environments with the anomaly detection focused on signal anomalies.
How does MSET work in Oracle 20c?
An important point to note before we start is, you can use MSET on your typical business data and other data stored in the database. It isn’t just for sensor, IOT, etc data mentioned above and can be used in many different business scenarios.
The first step you need to do is to create the time series data. This can be easily done using a view, but a Very important component is the Time attribute needs to be a DATE format. Additional attributes can be numeric data and these will be used as input to the algorithm for model creation.
-- Create training data set for MSET CREATE OR REPLACE VIEW mset_train_data AS SELECT time_id, sum(quantity_sold) quantity, sum(amount_sold) amount FROM (SELECT * FROM sh.sales WHERE time_id <= '30-DEC-99’) GROUP BY time_id ORDER BY time_id;
The example code above uses the SH schema data, and aggregates the data based on the TIME_ID attribute. This attribute is a DATE data type. The second import part of preparing and formatting the data is Ordering of the data. The ORDER BY is necessary to ensure the data is fed into or processed by the algorithm in the correct time series order.
The next step involves defining the parameters/hyper-parameters for the algorithm. All algorithms come with a set of default values, and in most cases these are suffice for your needs. In that case, you only need to define the Algorithm Name and to turn on Automatic Data Preparation. The following example illustrates this and also includes examples of setting some of the typical parameters for the algorithm.
BEGIN DELETE FROM mset_settings; -- Select MSET-SPRT as the algorithm INSERT INTO mset_sh_settings (setting_name, setting_value) VALUES(dbms_data_mining.algo_name, dbms_data_mining.algo_mset_sprt); -- Turn on automatic data preparation INSERT INTO mset_sh_settings (setting_name, setting_value) VALUES(dbms_data_mining.prep_auto, dbms_data_mining.prep_auto_on); -- Set alert count INSERT INTO mset_sh_settings (setting_name, setting_value) VALUES(dbms_data_mining.MSET_ALERT_COUNT, 3); -- Set alert window INSERT INTO mset_sh_settings (setting_name, setting_value) VALUES(dbms_data_mining.MSET_ALERT_WINDOW, 5); -- Set alpha INSERT INTO mset_sh_settings (setting_name, setting_value) VALUES(dbms_data_mining.MSET_ALPHA_PROB, 0.1); COMMIT; END;
To create the MSET model using the MST_TRAIN_DATA view created above, we can run:
BEGIN -- DBMS_DATA_MINING.DROP_MODEL(MSET_MODEL'); DBMS_DATA_MINING.CREATE_MODEL ( model_name => 'MSET_MODEL', mining_function => dbms_data_mining.classification, data_table_name => 'MSET_TRAIN_DATA', case_id_column_name => 'TIME_ID', target_column_name => '', settings_table_name => 'MSET_SETTINGS'); END;
The SELECT statement below is an example of how to call and run the MSET model to label the data to find anomalies. The PREDICTION function will return a values of 0 (zero) or 1 (one) to indicate the predicted values. If the predicted values is 0 (zero) the MSET model has predicted the input record to be anomalous, where as a predicted values of 1 (one) indicates the value is typical. This can be used to filter out the records/data you will want to investigate in more detail.
-- display all dates with Anomalies SELECT time_id, pred FROM (SELECT time_id, prediction(mset_sh_model using *) over (ORDER BY time_id) pred FROM mset_test_data) WHERE pred = 0;
Oracle Autonomous Database (ADW) has been out a while now and have had several, behind the scenes, improvements and new/additional features added.
If you have used the Oracle Machine Learning (OML) component of ADW you will have seen the various sample OML Notebooks that come pre-loaded. These are easy to open, use and to try out the various OML features.
The above image shows the top part of the login screen for OML. To see the available sample notebooks click on the Examples icon. When you do, you will get the following sample OML Notebooks.
But what if you have a notebook you have used elsewhere. These can be exported in json format and loaded as a new notebook in OML.
To load a new notebook into OML, select the icon (three horizontal line) on the top left hand corner of the screen. Then select Notebooks from the menu.
Then select the Import button located at the top of the Notebooks screen. This will open a File window, where you can select the json file from your file system.
A couple of seconds later the notebook will be available and listed along side any other notebooks you may have created.
You have now imported a new notebook into OML and can now use it to process your data and perform machine learning using the in-database features.